The vice president of diversity and inclusion at Eastern Virginia Medical School (EVMS) attempted to offer support to his DEI colleagues during what he called the “difficult days” following the Supreme Court’s decision that outlawed race-based admission practices.
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) documents obtained by Do No Harm show Mekbib Gemeda, Ed.D. forwarded to members of the Health Professions Chapter (HPC) of the National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education (NADOHE) information he gathered from a meeting held by the group’s president Paulette Granberry Russell, J.D., on June 28, the day before the release of the Court’s ruling.
Gemeda suggested NADOHE would still be supporting use of race in admissions whenever possible.
“I hope you are staying well during these difficult days,” he wrote in an email, and continued to summarize Russell’s meeting.
“The goal of the meeting was for Paulette to hear from Chapter leaders and to share plans and activities of NADOHE on the Supreme Court decision and State Legislation that is already affecting officers and programs,” he said, adding some “key highlights” of the meeting.
“NADOHE will continue to lead and partner with other organizations in opposing legislation against use of race in admissions,” Gemeda related, adding:
NADOHE will continue its work on articulating and presenting the argument on the critical importance of diversity in advancing academic excellence and innovation, civic engagement, and in achieving equity. To that end it will continue to work in tandem with other organizations in placing and disseminating this information to the public.
Gemeda also wrote that NADOHE “is working on developing resource toolkits for members in response to the SCOTUS decision,” and will be “exploring legal options to fight the efforts to dismantle diversity, equity and inclusion programing.”
Additionally, he shared Russell’s official statement on the day of the Court’s decision, one she called a “dark day in our nation’s history.”
Russell called the effects of the Court’s ruling “heart-wrenching”:
Even though many of us anticipated the outcome, facing the reality of the widespread impact of the Court’s ruling is heart-wrenching.
We are a racially diverse country that, as noted by the dissenting Justices Brown, Sotomayor, and Kagan, has not been colorblind.
Russell’s claim is representative of Critical Race Theory (CRT), the foundation of the DEI movement.
“This is a country with a history of legally sanctioned discrimination based on race, with outcomes that permeate our lives today in the 21st century,” she asserted.
“While the rulings acknowledge that race affects the lived experiences of students, they nevertheless limit the ability of colleges and universities to consider race in shaping their campuses,” she said, and then vowed:
We at NADOHE are discouraged but not dissuaded from our goals. We have work to do. We have votes to cast. We have students to educate and support. The work to ensure every student in our country has equal and equitable access to a college education continues, even on this dark day in our nation’s history.
Russell’s bio indicates her research interests are mired in a CRT worldview: “gender equity in STEM, campus culture and its impact on marginalized communities, and strategies for dismantling structural racism to create more equitable experiences for faculty, students, and staff of color.”
As Do No Harm reported in December 2022, NADOHE held a webinar series in advance of the Court’s ruling, the goal of which was to prepare academic DEI officers for their response to the anticipated decision and to plan for how they might still continue to support their diversity mission.
The decision by CRT/DEI activists to double down on finding workarounds to the Court’s ruling, however, is not based on any evidence that minority students who are qualified are being denied admission to medical schools, says Do No Harm Chairman Stanley Goldfarb, M.D.
In a letter to the editor at the Wall Street Journal in February, Dr. Goldfarb observed that, even though the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME), America’s primary medical school accreditation organization, has been coercing medical schools to accept more students of certain racial and ethnic groups for several years, “the number of minority students has increased only minimally and remains well below the sought-after goal of equaling the proportion of blacks in America.”
“Medical schools have had to confront the fact that an insufficient number of qualified students are available,” Goldfarb said, and spelled out the stark reality of the damage done by DEI to the future of health care in America: “Forcing greater diversity therefore must lead to a reduction in the merit of the students accepted.”
Additionally, however, Goldfarb noted the great disservice medical school diversity programs will inflict on qualified minority students if they dig in their heels further.
“Pursuing this approach will only undermine the academic achievements of those minority students who deserve admission to medical school and want eagerly to pursue a career in medicine,” he wrote. “They deserve fair treatment, just as patients deserve the highest standard of care.”
Get up to speed with the threats facing healthcare – and how we’re protecting patients and physicians.
"*" indicates required fields