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July 26, 1995 - Image 2

Resource type:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 1995-07-26

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2 - The Michigan Daily -Wednesday, July 26, 1995

Continued from page 1
of it, so it's very important for us to get the
word out on our programs."
Duderstadt said that other universities'
reactions to the vote may prompt the Uni-
versity to step into the limelight. "Most
universities will (follow) U-M (and) edu-
cate themselves to diversity in education,"
he said. "Michigan may have an even
more important leadership role, because
people can't look to California anymore."
The UC system cannot be compared
effectively with the University, Monts
said, because that would be a comparison
of an entire system to one school.
"I will say this, though," Monts said.
"In 1993, all nine campuses of the UC sys-
tem had 151 African American faculty. In
July 1993, there were 126 African Ameri-
cans on this single campus. Make that
Monts said that programs such as the

Michigan Mandate, which was started in
1987 to increase minority representation
on campus, and the Michigan Agenda for
Women, which was created last year to
increase campus representation of women,
are helping to ensure that the University
grows in its diversity.

"There was nothing comparable to
Michigan Mandate or Michigan Agenda
for Women (at UC)," he said. "A lot of
their progress is basically inertia."
Duderstadt said universities should
work to reflect the diversity in society.
"The way I basically explain it is that
we are an institution created by society to
serve society," Duderstadt said. "To the
degree that our society ischaracterizedby
the University, that should also be re-
flected on our campus."
Duderstadt cited the appointment of
the fifth female dean, the target opportu-
nity program for senior female faculty, the
Violence Against Women task force and
the modification of University dependent
care policies as results of the Michigan
Agenda for Women.
University officials credit the Michi-
gan Mandate with the increase in minority
enrollment from 13.5 percent in 1988 to
24.2 percent in 1994.
"About a quarter of our students ar stu-
dents of color, and we're beginning to see
very significant involvement of women
(on campus),"Monts said.
The UC system previously accepted
between 40-60 percent of their students
based solely on grades. The remainder
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were acceptedbased on a combination of
grades and "supplemental factors," in-
cluding race and special skills.
However, officials said that the Uni-
versity does not admit any students on the
basis of grades - or any other factor-
"We are trying to admit as diverse a
class as possible," Duderstadt said. "We
use multi-dimensional admissions."
Vice President for Student Affairs
Maureen A. Hartford said this systemen-
sures a more diverse enrollment. "It's not
simply grades/ test scores," she said.
"We're creating a diverse set of students
based on a whole series of issues."
Despite the increase in minority en-
rollment, the Black enrollment still falls
behind that other minority groups.
Duderstadt said that while he is not
satisfied with the level of enrollment, he
has pinpointed a possible cause of the
"In a sense, the poverty that affects
many Black neighborhoods affects their
awareness of what their opportunities
are,"he said.
Minority retention is also a problem,
Hartfordsaid,buttthe retension rate is still
higher than at otheruniversities. "Our Af-
rican American students at Michigan
graduate at a rate much higher than (that
of) white students at other universities,"
she said. "The situation now still isn't
good enough forus."
Monts said the University's focus
should include the problem of overall re-
tention. "I'm also concerned that 85 per-
cent of all students graduate," he said.
"I'm concerned about the gap between
that and 100percent."
Althoughthe official University state-
ment on diversity lists many "diversity
factors," such as age, sexual orientation
and religious preference, officials said that
fornow,the diversity focus willremian on
race, gender, geographic and socioeco-
nomic factors.
"This does not focus on sexual orien-
tation," Duderstadt said."That is a differ-
ent issue. What we try to do is promote
tolerance and an environment free from
Duderstadt said that the same policy
applies to religious preference, hut that
this does not negatively affect the com-
mitment to diversity. "I think we have the
largest Jewish population in any Univer-

sity in the country," he said.
"Affirmative action benefits every-
body," Duderstadt said, referring not ot
to admissions policies but also to hiring
"Now (when we have a job opening)
we have to define very clearly what the
position is and we are compelled to con-
duct a very broad search," he said.
While University officials may be
wholeheartedly in support of affirmative
action, it is the Board of Regents that de-
termines the University's policies.
"Our board has been very supportig
of this policy, but (membership) changes
drastically every two years," Duderstadt
said. "While everyone on the board ac-
cepts the public image of this institution
and what that means, the mechanism of
being accountable to the public is probably
seen in different ways throughout the

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