Oregon Senator's Bill Tackles Legacy College Admissions to 'Level Playing Field'

In February, Senator Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and Representative Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y. 16th District) introduced the Fair College Admissions for Students Act. The bill looks to curb the admissions advantage given to the children of alumni and donors for colleges and universities. Sen. Merkley joined Cheddar news to discuss the push behind the legislation. "My dad was a mechanic. I was applying to schools around the country. I never thought about the fact that those students who came from the most privileged backgrounds also got a special advantage in applying to college," he said. "They take up 10-25 percent of the slots at many of our universities, and so this is kind of affirmative action for those who need it least rather than a level playing field for everyone else." If enacted, the law would amend the Higher Education Act of 1965 doing away with legacy or donor status admissions for any school participating in the federal student aid program.
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