Critics of the University’s admissions policies may feel LSA freshman Sarah Barnard’s 3.0 grade point average and 22 ACT score did not merit her acceptance into the University, but she says standardized tests do not adequately measure an applicant’s intelligence and are inherently biased against minorities.

“They don’t really show your capabilities of how you can excel at the University,” said Barnard, a graduate from Ann Arbor Huron High School. “There’s no way that a three-hour test can measure anybody’s intellectual capability.”

Barnard admitted she definitely would not have been admitted into the College of Literature, Science and the Arts if its admissions policy had not granted her 20 points for being black. She was required to take classes before the start of her freshman year through the Summer Bridge program, designed to prepare certain students for University classes and determine whether they are capable of succeeding academically.

But Barnard said the use of race as an admissions factor, the subject of two lawsuits filed against LSA and the Law School, offsets the racism embedded in society.

“There are so many hidden points within the (LSA) point system that favor white students,” she said, citing examples like the points given for legacy status and attending an affluent high school with a strong curriculum. “It’s because of money, because these are students who are mainly white, because in the past their parents had the opportunity to go to college.”

Education senior Agnes Aleobua, who also took Summer Bridge classes after earning a 3.6 GPA and 26 ACT in high school, said the policies ensure that both white students attending affluent suburban schools and black students attending poor inner-city schools have the same opportunity to attend the University.

Black students are often unprepared for college because of their high-school educations, said Aleobua, a member of the Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action and Integration and Fight for Equality By Any Means Necessary. “The solution then isn’t to exclude them from college. It’s to have support programs and counseling programs to make sure they’re on track when school starts.”

LSA junior Mark Stamps, a graduate of Detroit Renaissance High School, said students at his school did not read college preparatory literature and had to use poor quality chemistry equipment. He added that many teachers “teach to a level they feel the student is able to perform.”

Aleobua said although her high school, Cass Technical High School, is considered to have one of the strongest academic programs in inner-city Detroit, the school offered its 3,000 students only four Advanced Placement classes and 20 computers with Internet access.

“You get to college … and it doesn’t matter if you know how to do the homework assignment or not, because you don’t know how to use e-mail,” she said.

Despite the fact that many inner-city, predominantly non-white schools often lack the same resources as suburban schools, some Summer Bridge graduates do not feel the LSA’s policy of granting points to black, Hispanic and Native American students is the best way to compensate for such disadvantages.

The biggest disadvantage many minorities face is a lack of financial resources, Stamps said, and a lack of understanding that substantial financial aid is available.

“Wherever you go, there’s a desire to learn, but it’s just a matter of resources.”

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