Bricks on the Brain

UM Law

Friday, November 11, 2005

Outrageous Discriminatory Recruitment II

I recently discussed what I perceived as a discriminatory hiring practice nonetheless endorsed by the UM Law administration. Essentially, a law firm is taking applications for a paid clerkship, the winner also receiving a monetary scholarship (a.k.a. signing bonus). Applicants are limited by race, and whites need not apply.

Apparently other schools are in the DOJ's cross-hairs for very similar scholarship/work-study discrimination. As I commented on a collegue's blog posting, these types of scholarship/employment practices may run afoul of Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964.

The most outragous aspect of this controversy is the fact that UM Law only grudgingly allows the military JAG corps to recruit on campus, disclaiming support for their "discriminatory" practice. Apparently it does not matter to the administration that the military's hiring practices have been deemed legal. The majority of Americans support the military's policies regarding women in combat roles and the "don't ask don't tell" policy with regards to sexual orientation. But a firm that denies opportunities to students based on race is welcomed on campus with open arms. What's next for UM Law...a minority-only or gay-only law review?

I wonder how the "winners" of these scholarships/internships in question must feel, knowing that but for naked racial discrimination, a more qualified candidate might have won instead.


  • At 3:46 PM, Blogger Tortious Inference said…

    I understand your anger over what the firm (a private co.) has decided to do in their effort to recruit more racially mixed person to their private firm. But are you saying that they only look at the racial background of the person as far as the scholarship/internship and that if it were open to all students then those students would not have a chance because they are less qualified?

    I wonder though it is all fruitless anyway since when these racially differ persons enter these firms only to be ultimately alienated and forced/given no choice but to go else where. Yes, they are "winners" in the end aren't they. I agree with you, it is outrageous and but for that "racial discrimination" you would probably have the scholarship and this firm would have to lower its standards to let those people of color in if they really wanted them.

  • At 5:30 PM, Blogger Bricklayer said…


    1. I never claimed that I was not a member of the qualifying minority races. I am, however, ineligible because I am not a 1L. I have no personal stake in who wins.

    2. I am not saying minority students are less qualified simply because they are minorities, or that they are assumedly less qualified. But I do find it worth noting that for the past few years, the UM Law Review has had very few minority members that would qualify to compete for that scholarship/internship. (To my knowledge, basing admission to the Law Review on race has never been proposed and I do not think it would be accepted well.) There have been many females, religious minorities, and "out" homosexuals on the Law Review in the last few years. All ineligible to compete.

    3. Your second paragraph echoes the sentiments of Justice Thomas, himself an African-American. See his dissent in GRUTTER V. BOLLINGER 539 U.S. 306.

    It is nice to see that there are still law students who think for themselves.

  • At 6:18 PM, Blogger Tortious Inference said…

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