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Affirmative Action At UCLA: Case Study

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Betsy Casas CCS 150/ DIS 1D June 10, 2016 CCS 150 Final Paper Affirmative Action at UCLA: Part I Chancellor Block proposed the Bruin Diversity Plan with the objective of promoting a diverse student body. His mission with this plan would be; 1) to reduce the historical deficit of traditionally disfavored minority groups (Latinx, African Americans, and Native Americans), 2) to counter the effects of societal discrimination, 3) to increase the number of professionals in currently underserved communities, and 4) to acquire the educational benefits that flow from a diverse student body. In order to achieve these goals he plans to use a point system which awards applicants points based on 7 categories. These categories vary in potential points accorded,…show more content…
It strictly prohibits discrimination and preferential treatment by state government institutions (as it does not apply to the private sector), and thus grants all citizens of this nation an equal protection of the laws. There are three standards of review under the Equal Protection Clause: Rational Basis Review, Intermediate Scrutiny, and Strict Scrutiny. In this case Strict Scrutiny will be used for the review of the Bruin Diversity Plan because it classifies applicants on the basis of a “suspect classification,” of which race is one. According to Strict Scrutiny, the government must prove that the use of a “suspect classification” is necessary and narrowly tailored to serve a “compelling governmental interest.” Of the four stated goals from the Bruin Diversity Plan, the fourth one which states: “to acquire the educational benefits that flow from a diverse student body,” would be able to serve as a compelling interest according to Justice Powell. In the case Regents of the University of California v. Bakke, Justice Powell in his opinion said that the “goal of achieving a diverse student body is sufficiently compelling to justify consideration of race in…show more content…
Bollinger case, the University of Michigan College of Literature, Science, and the Arts was sued because of its use of race as a factor in the point system the school used for admissions decisions. Every applicant who belonged to an underrepresented minority group was automatically distributed 20 points, which had the potential to become a decisive factor in the admission or rejection of the applicant. The Court held that even though the University wanted to further the compelling interest of achieving a diverse student body, it did not do it in a narrowly-tailored manner. The University did not give applicants an individualized review of their applications and used race as a decisive factor and not a plus factor in the admissions decisions, which is unconstitutional. The Bruin Diversity Plan does intend to use a point system which automatically awards 20 points to Latinx, African Americans, and Native Americans because of their “potential contribution to campus cultural diversity.” This would be deemed unconstitutional on the grounds of the Gratz case because by automatically awarding 20 points because of race solely to applicants, the factor of race would become a decisive factor in admissions and would not be narrowly-tailored enough to justify the program's use of
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