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ARL, Higher Ed Groups Urge US Supreme Court to Uphold Diversity in College Admissions

image CC-BY by KamrenB Photography

The Association of Research Libraries joined the American Council on Education (ACE) and 36 other higher education associations in filing an amicus brief (PDF) with the US Supreme Court in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin on Friday, October 30, 2015, as the court prepares to take a second look at the university’s diversity in admissions policy.

Abigail Fisher, an unsuccessful applicant to the University of Texas (UT), has asked the Supreme Court to reverse the 2014 decision of the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit re-endorsing the manner in which UT considers race in undergraduate admissions decisions.

The suit, brought in 2008, asks the court to declare UT’s race-conscious admissions policy inconsistent with Grutter v. Bollinger, the 2003 University of Michigan case that confirmed that race can have an appropriate but limited role in college admissions. In 2013, in Fisher I, the Supreme Court reaffirmed that obtaining the educational benefit of a diverse student body is a compelling interest that can justify narrowly tailored consideration of race. The Association of Research Libraries joined a 2012 amicus brief (PDF) filed on behalf of 40 higher education associations in support of the University of Texas policy.

About the Association of Research Libraries

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is a nonprofit organization of 124 research libraries in the US and Canada. ARL’s mission is to influence the changing environment of scholarly communication and the public policies that affect research libraries and the diverse communities they serve. ARL pursues this mission by advancing the goals of its member research libraries, providing leadership in public and information policy to the scholarly and higher education communities, fostering the exchange of ideas and expertise, facilitating the emergence of new roles for research libraries, and shaping a future environment that leverages its interests with those of allied organizations. ARL is on the web at http://www.arl.org/.