Essay Affirmative Action Must Play a Role in College Admissions

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Anxiously awaiting its contents, the high school senior stares at his mailbox. He has been awaiting a response for months from his dream college. He has endured the endless questions from friends and family, "Did you hear from that college yet?" He has spent many a night he should have been sleeping lying in bed wondering whether he would be heading to his dream school in the fall. He has read numerous books and has done serious research on just what it took to get where he wanted to be. He continues to stare for hours, shaking from either anticipation or fear, though he cannot decide which. Finally his parents arrive home and encourage him to open the letter. He then opens the box. Now I ask this. Should this senior’s ethnicity impact…show more content…
In 1973, Bakke received a score of 468 out of 500, but was not accepted, because he had applied late in the year due to his wife's mother's serious illness, and by this time of the year, only applicants with scores 470 or higher were accepted. There were, however, four special-admissions slots remaining, but Bakke was ineligible for these. The special admissions program at Davis was reserved for applicants from disadvantaged backgrounds, and these applicants, who were required to be from a racial minority group, were evaluated separately from the other regular-admissions applicants. In both years that he applied, Bakke's GPA was close to the average for regular admittees, but significantly higher than that of the special admittees. His MCAT scores were well above both averages. Bakke was angered but decided to apply again in 1974. He was again rejected. Bakke then sued the medical school. He claimed that the special admissions program was an unfair racial quota, a violation of the 14th amendment. In its decision on the case of Allan Bakke, the Supreme Court ruled that racial quotas are unconstitutional, but that race can still be used as a factor in admissions. In the Supreme Court’s decision, Justice Marshall, the only justice on the Supreme Court who was of a racial minority group, stated that the Fourteenth Amendment, ratified directly after the Civil War,
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