The Daily Tar Heel
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The Daily Tar Heel

Don’t mind the gap

Affirmative action for male applicants not solution

Admissions decisions should be based solely on the merits of one’s application. Although the female-to-male ratio at universities across the country is rising, administrators at UNC shouldn’t begin giving preferential treatment to male applicants.

Recently, the U.S. Civil Rights Commission opened an investigation into whether universities are giving preferential treatment to males to even the gender gap.

In 2005, 57 percent of college students were female; projections put that number at 60 percent by 2016. According to Title IX, public universities cannot consider gender when making admissions decisions.

Regardless of how wide the gender gap becomes, it is wrong to deny admission to an applicant based solely on gender.

The national trend is pointing toward an increase in the gender gap. But universities should not attempt to solve this problem by enacting quotas or pursuing roundabout ways to increase male enrollment.

There are clearly underlying problems that can’t be solved by affirmative action for males.

There is a reason the national enrollment is pushing 60 percent female. Boys are falling behind earlier in school. So perhaps the problem is built into the educational system.

If that’s the case, then the answer certainly doesn’t lie in giving males preferential treatment to college admissions for the sole purpose of balancing out the gender gap.

Besides, a university that is 40 percent male is hardly lacking in diversity.

Ensuring the success of male students is important, but giving them preferential treatment in the admissions process addresses the symptoms of the problem, not the root causes.

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