Gates forum to address admissions policies
By Eric Ambroso
Wednesday, December 3, 2003
Graphic by Ruben Deluna
Texas A&M President Robert M.
Gates will hold an open forum today to discuss changes in admissions requirements and to announce the
creation of the Tuition Policy Advisory Committee. The U.S. Supreme Court decided in June that race
can be considered in a university’s admission policies, and Big 12 schools, such as the University of
Texas, have already looked at implementing affirmative action policies in their
The Supreme Court upheld a previous ruling by the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court
of Appeals that the University of Michigan Law School’s admissions policy is
The school had been using race as a factor in admissions. The court held
that the law school’s goal of admitting a “critical mass of under represented minority students,”
does not necessarily turn the program’s admissions process into a quota system. However, the court
disagreed with Michigan’s undergraduate system of automatically distributing points to students from
minority groups in the admissions process.
In response to the ruling, Gates appointed a
task force in August, headed by Karan Watson, dean of faculties and associate provost, to research
A&M’s admissions policies.
The task force completed its work and submitted its
recommendations to Gates. He reviewed the recommendations and will announce a final decision about
whether the University will change its admissions policies at the forum.
“I’m going to
talk about changes in admissions requirements and also some new outreach programs,” Gates
Unlike A&M, UT proposed alterations to admissions policies this semester. The
implementation of any changes made to the A&M’s admissions policies will be delayed for at least a
According to the Texas Education Code, a university must publish its admissions
requirements at least one year prior to the date applicants for admission are considered using the new
The statute requires delaying implementation of any new admissions policies
until the Fall 2005.
Gates will announce which