NH Public Universities prohibited from using affirmative action since 2012

DURHAM, NH — The University of New Hampshire is the flagship school of the state’s public education system and since 2012 it’s been barred from using preferential treatment in college admissions due to state law.

The Granite State banned affirmative action in the college admissions process more than a decade ago.

Christopher Logan who works at Collegewise, a Boston area business that helps students in the admissions process says the new strategy of creating a diverse friendly campus helps “to make it a more welcoming and encouraging environment when those students think about matriculating to UNH.”

“Since 2012, New Hampshire state law has prohibited preferential treatment based on race and other protected categories in public sector recruiting, hiring, promotion and collegiate admissions. today’s court decision will not impact those policies, which are already neutral on race in compliance with state law,” UNH told Boston 25 in a statement.

Maddy Rodriguez, co-chair of Education Practice at the Boston law firm Foley Hoag, tells Boston 25 that once UNH makes student selections they cannot engage in any race-based or race-conscious recruiting once a student is accepted

They are bound by that 2012 law which Logan says surprisingly did not have a major impact on the racial makeup of UNH.

“There was a small decline in the number of admits from some racial minorities but there was also a decline in the number of white students on campus, so the numbers shifted a little bit but not the way you might have expected,” said Logan.

At any rate, in this new climate, Rodriguez says minorities need to remember this vital part of the admissions process.

“The court was also clear that students can still discuss their racial and ethnic identity as part of the application,” said Rodriguez.

She adds that experience is still something important that schools can still take into account.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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