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On November 17, 2014, Students for Fair Admissions, Inc., an organization opposed to the use of race in the college admissions process, brought suit against the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It alleged that UNC's consideration of race in its admission process violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, section 1983, and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act. 

Relman, Dane & Colfax represent several students and applicants of color who attend or wanted to attend UNC-Chapel Hill who moved to intervene in the litigation. They have a significant interest in ensuring that future applications are considered under a holistic process that includes the lawful consideration of race, because otherwise, they cannot obtain the educational benefits that flow from a diverse student body.

Finding that “the result of this litigation will have a direct and significant impact on North Carolinians’ access to UNC-Chapel Hill,” the Court granted permissive intervention, allowing Intervenors to present information on the history of segregation and discrimination at UNC-Chapel Hill and in North Carolina and the effect of admissions processes on the critical mass of diverse students at UNC-Chapel Hill. 

The Relman, Dane & Colfax litigation team is assisted by co-counsel Jon Greenbaum, Brenda Shum, and Genevieve Bonadies Torres at the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and Jack Holtzman and Emily Turner at the North Carolina Justice Center. 

Case Caption

Students for Fair Admission v. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, No. 14-954 (M.D.N.C.).

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