“We want to take this opportunity to reiterate the University of Wisconsin System position on undergraduate admissions. The requirements and policies regarding admissions to the university have not changed. We want Wisconsin families to know that the best way for their sons and daughters to be assured a place at any UW campus continues to be to work hard in school and demonstrate academic achievement. There will always be a place at a UW System campus for students who study hard and get good grades.
“As our campuses review applications for admission, they look for evidence that the applying students can, and will, succeed on that particular campus. In addition to academic achievement, we consider other factors that can benefit the education of our entire student body, including diversity, special talents, abilities, and personal experiences of students who want to attend our public university system. We will continue to do that, because we know that high school grade point averages and test scores alone do not tell the full story about an individual’s determination and potential.
“The 2003 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Grutter v. Bollinger reinforced the UW System’s legal ability to do what we have always done regarding admissions. Importantly, it also renewed our commitment to achieving a more diverse student body in the interest of providing the richest possible higher education experience for all of our students, and in the best interest of the future economic vitality of Wisconsin. Business leaders have repeatedly, and very pointedly, told us that the university needs to do a better job of diversifying the student educational experience, our campus environments and our graduating classes. We will continue to review our admissions processes to ensure that they help us to meet these goals.
“Make no mistake – teaching and learning come first in the UW System, and our students are held to high academic standards. The Board of Regents will closely track the progress of our campuses as they further evaluate and assess their admission processes.
“Through its Growth Agenda for Wisconsin and support for the Wisconsin Covenant, the UW System intends to provide more, not less, access to Wisconsin students from a variety of backgrounds, to help them to be better prepared to succeed on our campuses, to increase the number of Wisconsin residents who have four-year college degrees, and to prepare all of our students to live and work in an increasingly diverse society.
“The bottom line is that with the support of the Governor and the Legislature, working with our K-12 schools and the Technical Colleges, the university wants to offer more opportunities for a college education to a greater number of Wisconsin residents than ever before. Why? The answer is simple: that is the way Wisconsin will succeed in a globally competitive, knowledge economy.”