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  • Writer's picturelavabutton1

The end of Legacies

On February 2nd a bill was given to Congress that would end the tradition and favor of legacies for college applications.

Since the 1920’s when the legacy system in America became popular, people have been excluded from a chance at getting admitted into a college, and these “legacy” students have been favored over other random admissions.

“Legacies” are people who have had past generations of their immediate family go to a certain school. This system is used to favor legacy applicants over others.

In most especially exceptional schools, legacy admissions account for 10-25 percent of all total admissions. This is an issue with schools like MIT with an already low admissions rate of 7.3 percent because now even fewer people will be able to get in.

This issue is especially common with higher education universities such as schools like Harvard or yale which are already especially selective in their admissions process.

The system was also historically used to disadvantage minority groups by preventing them from getting even representation in the college admissions process without having the school be prosecuted for racist admissions practices.

The bill itself prevents this unfair policy by preventing higher education schools that participate in federal student aid programs from giving special treatment to people undergoing the admissions process that have a relationship with the alumni of the school.

This specifically amends the higher education act of 1965 which provides financial aid to post-secondary students ie. legacy students.

The second part of this bill grants the U.S. Secretary of Education the ability to waive the legacy preference for Historically Black College and Universities (HBCUs), Tribal College or Universities (TCUs), and Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs).

The bill states however that in order for these types of schools to receive this waiver, they must demonstrate their use of legacy is in the best interest of underrepresented and minority students.

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