On Friday, UVA’s Office of Undergraduate Admissions announced its decisions to the first class of early decision applicants since 2006. Alongside the released decisions came the announcement from Peabody Hall that the make-up of accepted students represent a record-breaking number of privileged white students.
“We are excited today to announce that UVA’s early decision process has produced the least diverse group of incoming students this University has seen in many years,” a statement from Dean of Admission Gregory Roberts read. “Not only is this group of students significantly less racially diverse than recent classes, but it also includes a remarkably low number of first-generation students, making this group of students some of the most privileged this University has seen in a long time. I’m proud to say that re-implementing early decision has made applying to UVA infinitely more accessible for those high school students who need the least amount of help in society.”
Many students applauded the University specifically for admitting so many legacy students – a whopping 26 percent – during this early decision application cycle. The early decision process now makes it much easier for the forgotten class of privileged white students to apply to UVA.
“I feel like there aren’t enough people that look like me here at UVA,” said Montague Everett Hampton Carrington IV, a third-year student in the College. “I look around, and it’s like, all I see is diversity, and students who have worked really hard to achieve success despite the obstacles that society has put in front of them, and I can’t relate to any of that. It’s really nice that UVA is making an effort to reduce barriers for students like me who already don’t have any barriers anyway.”
UVA had previously been criticized by student activists for not doing enough to promote uniformity among the student population. They argue that if every student comes from the same background and thinks and acts in the same way, then the University won’t even have to bother with inclusivity and accessibility measures.
“UVA has a long history of racism and white supremacy,” said Ashley Wilmington, a third-year Law student, “so it’s nice to see the University taking steps to embrace that tradition. I’d like to see other Offices and Departments making more of an effort to help students forget about such an uncomfortable part of this University’s past. The last thing we should be doing is trying to make up for the harm UVA’s previous actions have done.”