New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is battling President Donald Trump’s administration, issuing an open letter to SUNY and CUNY officials imploring them to maintain diversity and inclusion plans.
Cuomo issued the letter to SUNY Board of Trustees Chair H. Carl McCall and CUNY Board of Trustees Chair William Thompson Jr. on Thursday, directing them to maintain their diversity and inclusion plans after the Trump administration rescinded guidelines on using race in college admissions.
The letter directs the Chairs to continue existing policies that promote racial diversity and inclusion and to prepare a report by Aug. 15 on how they will further expand and increase diversity on campuses.
“The Trump administration's move to rescind the guidelines on using race in college admissions is a blatant attempt to limit the participation of minorities in higher education. It is part of a troubling trend by the President and his administration to alienate minorities and build walls to diversity and equal participation in society,” Cuomo wrote.
According to Cuomo, New York’s two university systems “have long been bastions of diversity and engines of social mobility,” citing SUNY’s 45 percent and CUNY’s 75 percent minority student population.
“In this state, we embrace diversity and we encourage it. I am directing you to continue your existing diversity and inclusion plans. The new federal action should have no bearing on admission policies and should not interfere with SUNY's and CUNY's commitment to a diverse and inclusive student body,” Cuomo said.
“The Trump administration wants to take this country backward, but in New York, we are moving forward. We will continue to work together to dismantle barriers to social and economic mobility and extend the promise of equal opportunity to all New Yorkers.”
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