In 1935, Alice Jackson Stuart was the first African American to apply to the University of Virginia. When she was denied admission, she questioned the decision and the NAACP threatened a lawsuit which led to the creation of a separate graduate school for blacks at Virginia State University. It took until 1950 for a black person to be admitted to UVa, and today Stuart’s papers are being donated to the school’s library. In the sixties, many public schools initiated affirmative action programs to boost minority enrollment. Are these programs still necessary? Hayward Farrar (Virginia Tech) and Peter Wallenstein (Virginia Tech) discuss how the nation’s higher education system was desegregated.
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