Conference on Diversity in Higher Education Post-Fisher

Panel 1: Fisher vs. University of Texas at Austin: A Primer

An overview of the Supreme Court decision, its origins, and the current state of the remanded case. •Joshua Civin – General Counsel, Montgomery County Public Schools

  • Sharon Davies – Director of the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity, Moritz College of Law, Ohio State University
  • Patti Ohlendorf – Vice President for Legal Affairs, University of Texas at Austin
  • Moderator: Ranjana Natarajan – The University of Texas School of Law

Panel 2: Achieving Diversity Through Race-Neutral Admissions Programs

Discussion of the history of Hopwood and the Texas Top 10% law, how the law currently influences university admissions policies, and possible options to move forward in an entirely race-neutral scheme. •Kedra Ishop – Vice Provost, Director of Admissions, The University of Texas at Austin

  • Douglas Laycock – University of Virginia School of Law
  • Celina Moreno – Legislative Staff Attorney, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF)
  • Moderator: Jordan Steiker –The University of Texas School of Law

Keynote Speaker and Lunch

Hosted by the UT Division of Diversity and Community Engagement

  • Introduction: Gregory Vincent – Vice President for Diversity and Community Engagement, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Keynote: Beyond Affirmative Action: From Diversity to Inclusion

Speaker: Marta Tienda – Maurice P. During ’22 Professor in Demographic Studies, Professor of Sociology and Public Affairs, Princeton University

Panel 3: Ripple Effects of Opportunities in Higher Education

Discussion about affirmative action as part of the spectrum of opportunity in education and beyond, and whether an end to affirmative action could have larger societal effects.

  • Patrick Shin – Suffolk University Law School
  • Funmi Showole – Columbia Law School
  • Moderator: Cary Franklin – The University of Texas School of Law

Panel 4: Race-based and Class-based Affirmative Action: Point, Counterpoint

Discussion about race-based and class-based affirmative action as solutions for diversity in higher education.

  • David Hinojosa – Regional Counsel, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF)
  • Richard Kahlenberg – Century Foundation
  • Moderator: Joseph Fishkin – The University of Texas School of Law


Co-sponsored with the Texas Journal on Civil Liberties & Civil Rights, the Civil Rights Clinic, the Division on Diversity and Community Engagement, the Heaman Sweatt Symposium on Civil Rights, and the National Forum on Higher Education for the Public Good.

Event series: Conference