NSHE Responds to White House Policy on Race-Based Admissions


Dr. Thom Reilly, Nevada System of Higher Education chancellor. Image: NSHE.
Dr. Thom Reilly, Nevada System of Higher Education chancellor. Image: NSHE.

As the White House plans on encouraging higher education institutions to adopt race-blind admissions standards, Nevada System of Higher Education Chancellor Thom Reilly noted that Nevada’s higher education institutions operate under an open access general admission policy.

“We are a state that has open access for general admission to our public higher education institutions. If you meet the minimal requirements you are accepted into our institutions,” Reilly said. “But one of our main goals is to increase access and graduation rates among all populations, including historically underserved minority groups.”

Reilly added, “As a system we take satisfaction in who we include, not who we exclude. We believe in an inclusiveness mission with broad commitment to access and excellence and that higher education is a pathway to social mobility.”

UNLV. Image: Wikimedia Commons

NSHE takes pride in its diverse student population, including at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, which is ranked by U.S. News and World Report as tied for first place as the most diverse university in the nation.

Across NSHE’s seven degree-conferring institutions more than half of the students enrolled identify themselves as being from a diverse background, which have historically been underserved populations in higher education.

Nevada Board of Regents Chair Kevin J. Page added that Nevada’s economic success is dependent on increased participation in post-secondary education and closing the achievement gap among underserved populations.

“One of our main goals is to create a more inclusive, welcoming environment for our students, which includes encouraging students of all races and cultural backgrounds to pursue a degree or certificate in higher education that will enhance their skills, create better opportunities for themselves and their families, and provide a well-trained workforce for Nevada’s growing economy,” Page said.

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  1. Norm Robins has it nailed. From the governing board of the highest system of education in the state of Nevada, the purest form and classic example of bureaucratic gobbledygook and meaningless but eloquent rhetoric.

  2. I guess Dr. Reilly can’t see his way clear to answer my honest and quite simple question. Are other minority applicants given preference over Asian applicants who have better test scores as Harvard does? Why can’t I get an honest and quite simple answer yes or no?

    I suspect Dr. Reilly is practicing seagull management as politicians and bureaucrats too frequently do. What is seagull management you might ask? That’s managing like a seagull–flying in, pooping all over everything, and flying out.

    I take Dr. Reilly’s non-answer to mean yes, Asian applicants must be twice as good to be equal just as Jews, Italians, and Irish before them. I thought we had outgrown that sort of bias. I guess not. Pity.

  3. I agree with Norm Robins. More specificity would be appreciated, yet a policy of inclusion says a lot especially when the tone of our country is about exclusion. Please ask Dr. Reilly to continue his comments so that we can see what is really happening.

  4. Dr. Reilly give us the standard bureaucrat’s answer in this essay couched in vague generalities with nothing specific for us to chew on. It is a soporific that tells us nothing specific about his admission policies. Does he rate applicants on personal factors as does Harvard? Do Asians score lower on personal factors that exclude otherwise qualified kids in favor of less qualified ones as does Harvard? I read this essay twice looking for the answer, and all I found were gurgle-words selected to make me content but that kept me in the dark. So I would like this answered: Are kids of certain races who qualify better on test scores excluded in favor of “disadvantaged” kids whose test scores are inferior? A simple yes or no would be greatly appreciated. There is only so much “bureaucratise” I can handle.

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