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Both SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher and SUNY Student Assembly President Marc J. Cohen issued statements yesterday after the Supreme Court’s 4-3 ruling that colleges may, indeed, use affirmative action during the admissions process.

Zimpher stated:

“As public universities, we have a responsibility to our students to ensure that the demographics on our campuses and in our classrooms mirror that of the society in which they live and the workforce they will become a part of. This is the very reason SUNY recently put in place a sweeping new diversity policy that we believe will help us become the most inclusive system of higher education in the country.

“While not often the deciding factors, race and ethnicity are some of the many considerations taken into account as colleges and universities decide whether a student should be enrolled. Today’s Supreme Court decision upholding this practice at the University of Texas at Austin affirms diversity and inclusion as a meaningful, worthwhile, and absolutely necessary priority in public higher education.”

Cohen added:

“One of the most enriching aspects of our college years is exposure to diversity. The world is a melting pot of races, cultures, and lifestyles. As SUNY students we are privileged to attend some of the most diverse campuses in the nation. We learn, celebrate, and grow together.
The Supreme Court’s decision to support that diversity only serves to reaffirm inclusion as a core part of our shared values. Higher Education is a resource that should be available to everyone, especially the most vulnerable members of our society. We are looking forward to a future that is more diverse and accepting than ever before.”
  • This story was previewed in the January edition, page 19, of Campus News.