Professors at Smith College in Northampton, Mass. are being denounced as white supremacists after private messages were leaked in which they claim affirmative action sets up students for academic failure at the school.
The controversy in question concerns two letters sent by faculty in Smith’s School for Social Work to school administrators. Although the letters were initially private, they were leaked to students at the school by an unknown person, who said they wished to reveal the “violent, racist rhetoric directed toward students of color on the Smith campus.”
The first letter, sent by professor Dennis Miehls, warns that the school was failing in its “gatekeeper” function by admitting too many academically unprepared applicants.
“Why do you, as administrators, continue to offer differential outcomes to students of color, in spite of overwhelming data that demonstrates that many of our students, including white-identified students, cannot offer clients a social work intervention that is based upon competence, skills and ethics,” Miehls said in his letter. Miehls went so far as to call the admissions process “tainted” because of how willing it was to admit unprepared non-white students.
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