Texas Tech has been all over the news in recent days, with its upstart basketball team plowing through the March Madness NCAA tournament. Texas Tech (TTU) lost to the University of Virginia in a hard-fought battle in the championship game. But TTU is also in the news for a different reason, having come to an agreement with the Trump administration to end affirmative action.
In February, the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine agreed that going forward, race and national origin will no longer be a consideration in the admissions process. Should the school decide to use race as a factor in the future, it would have to submit an explanation to the Department of Education (DoE).
The agreement follows an investigation that first kicked off in 2005. Way back in 2004, someone filed a complaint with the DoE’s Office of Civil Rights, alleging that TTU used race as part of its admissions process and that this was in violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Affirmative action remains a complicated, touchy subject. Proponents argue that affirmative action helps neglected, under-served communities rise up the ladder. Certain minorities are more likely to attend subpar schools and lack access to various resources.
Critics claim that affirmative action is a violation of civil rights. According to this narrative, everyone should be judged by the same criteria and that ethnicity and skin color should not be a factor. In practice, affirmative action tends to hurt Caucasians and Asians.
However, affirmative action has helped countless individuals from disadvantaged communities gain access to higher education opportunities.