Dear BMCC Community,
Today, we received news that the U.S. Supreme Court has barred race-conscious admissions in higher education. This dire outcome to two cases brought before the Court, one against Harvard and another against the University of North Carolina, is in direct opposition to our BMCC mission grounded in equity for all students.
The Court’s ruling raises deep concerns as it impacts admissions policies across the nation. It could limit access to the transformative college education, especially in Black, brown, marginalized, and other communities, and exacerbate systemic disparities. As stated by Justice Sotomayor in her dissenting opinion, “[t]he devastating impact of this decision cannot be overstated. The majority’s vision of race neutrality will entrench racial segregation in higher education because racial inequality will persist so long as it is ignored.”
This setback hits at the very core of our BMCC mission to advance equity, socioeconomic mobility and justice through the far-reaching power of education.
At BMCC, diversity, inclusion and academic excellence remain the primary drivers of everything we do. We will continue to engage every strategy at our disposal—from our robust support services to our forward-looking degree programs and groundbreaking workforce initiatives—to ensure student success and a powerful culture of care at our College.
Our work on behalf of students is important. We are opening doors to exciting careers and advanced degrees. We must reaffirm our mission as a college to inclusion, diversity and our students’ upward mobility. We must reaffirm our commitment to antiracism and racial equity and continue to enable our students to tell their truths and share their experience.
The ruling against affirmative action reminds us of why we are here. In a time when legal attacks are being used to prevent the perspectives of marginalized communities from inclusion in our documented history as a country, when they are used to remove those truths from our curricula and our public spaces, our path forward is clear.
As Justice Sotomayor also stated in her dissenting opinion, “[t]rue equality of educational opportunity in racially diverse schools is an essential component of the fabric of our democratic society. It is an interest of the highest order and a foundational requirement for the promotion of equal protection under the law. Brown recognized that passive race neutrality was inadequate to achieve the constitutional guarantee of racial equality in a Nation where the effects of segregation persist.”
Education is an irrefutable tool in the dismantling of systems of inequality that marginalize immigrant and Black and brown communities. Take action by registering to vote and getting involved in your communities. When an opportunity to raise your voice and advocate for equity is before you, take it.
Anthony E. Munroe
President, Borough of Manhattan Community College