UW News

October 8, 1998

Former president of Harvard to address UW Board of Regents on affirmative action

News and Information

Derek Bok, former president of Harvard University and the co-author of a book that is the most comprehensive analysis of the effects of racial preferences in higher education, will be a guest speaker at the University of Washington Board of Regents Academic and Student Affairs Committee meeting, 8:30 a.m. Friday, Oct. 16 in the Walker-Ames Room.

“The Shape of the River: Long-Term Consequences of Considering Race in College and University Admissions,” is based on a study of 45,184 students who enrolled in 28 highly selective colleges in the years 1976 or 1989. The authors say their study disproves the claim made by critics of affirmative action that black students with lower test scores would be better off at less-selective institutions, where their scores would be more in line with the average student.

Bok is the 300th Anniversary University Professor at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard. He was dean of the Harvard Law School for three years before serving as Harvard’s president from 1971 to 1991.