NewsDuke University Opens Black-Only Scholarship To Everyone

Duke University Opens Black-Only Scholarship To Everyone

Affirmative action strikes again!

A full-ride scholarship to Duke University meant for Black students only will now be open to white, Hispanic, Asian, and Latino students in the wake of affirmative action ending. 

The Reginaldo Howard Scholarship, originally intended for students of “African descent,” will be turned into a leadership initiative. In partnership with the Office of University Scholars and Fellows, the Mary Lou Williams Center for Black Culture will establish the Reginaldo Howard Leadership Program—open to all undergraduate students, regardless of race, and “not including a competitive selection process.”

Established in 1979, the merit scholarship required students to present financial need and covered full tuition—room and board included—for a special selection of Black students. According to an archived website, scholarship “candidates are considered to be among the top applicants of African descent to Duke University.” 

Former recipients are sad to hear about the changes that helped so many receive their education.

“It is very much disheartening to hear that this program that opened the door for me to come to Duke is now being closed essentially, even though it will take on a new form,” Junior Mya Harris said.

Senior Drew Greene said the program gave him a sense of community with which he enjoys spending time.

“It has been a fantastic experience, so of course, in that regard, I am gutted.”

Other recipients felt blindsided by the decision after being informed on Apr. 9 via a summarized email explaining the changes occurred “in light of changes to the legal landscape related to race-based considerations in higher education.” “We were just kind of told what was happening as it was happening,” Hannah Gedion, a sophomore, said. 

“We felt very powerless, to be honest with you.”

Perry accuses the program of violating Title IX as it “operates exclusively for female students and illegally excludes and discriminates against non-female students based on their sex and gender identity.” 

Source: Black Enterprise

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