Friday, November 11, 2005
The U.S. Justice Department plans to sue Southern Illinois University over three fellowship programs reserved for minority-group members or women. Among the three programs being challenged is one that is financed by the National Science Foundation and operated according to NSF guidelines, university officials say.This is front of today's Chronicle of Higher Education (subscriber permlink, here's a temp good for five days). The Chicago Sun-Times reports that the university is seeking a discussion and defends the practice. It also has a description of the fellowships called into question.
In a November 4 letter to the university, Bradley J. Schlozman, the acting assistant attorney general in charge of the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division, said his agency would file a lawsuit against the Southern Illinois University system's Board of Trustees and administration by November 18, based on its finding that the system has "engaged in a pattern or practice of intentional discrimination against whites, nonpreferred minorities, and males."
FELLOWSHIP: Bridge to the DoctorateThe effect of this would be sweeping, as I believe you could find such programs at most universities in America.
Award: $30,000 stipend, plus $10,500 for education expenses
Purpose: "For underrepresented minority students to initiate graduate study in science, technology, engineering and math.''
Number of awards since inception: 24 (19 blacks, 5 Latino, 1 Native American)
FELLOWSHIP: Proactive Recruitment and Multicultural Professionals for Tomorrow
Award: Tuition waiver and $1,200 monthly stipend
Purpose: "To increase the number of minorities receiving advanced degrees in disciplines in which they are underrepresented.''
Awards since inception: 78 (61 blacks, 14 Latinos, 1 Asian, 2 Native Americans)
FELLOWSHIP: Graduate Dean's
Award: Tuition waiver, $1,000 monthly stipend
Purpose: "For women and and traditionally underrepresented students who have overcome social, cultural or economic conditions.''
Awards since inception: 27 (16 whites, 7 blacks, 4 Latinos)