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当哈佛大学免费了,亚裔就不会被歧视?

更新时间:2016-1-18 9:05:08 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

A Push to Make Harvard Free Also Questions the Role of Race in Admissions
当哈佛大学免费了,亚裔就不会被歧视?

Should Harvard be free?

哈佛应该免费吗?

That is the provocative question posed by an outsider slate of candidates running for the Board of Overseers at Harvard, which helps set strategy for the university. They say Harvard makes so much money from its $37.6 billion endowment that it should stop charging tuition to undergraduates.

这是哈佛大学监事会选举时一群外部候选人提出的敏感问题。该监事会旨在辅助哈佛制定策略。他们声称,哈佛利用376亿美元的捐款赚取了大笔钱财,所以应当为本科生免除学费。

But they have tied the notion to another equally provocative question: Does Harvard shortchange Asian-American applicants in admissions?

不过,他们把这一意见与另一个同样敏感的问题放在了一起:哈佛是否在录取过程中亏待亚裔申请人?

The slate of five former students was put together by Ron Unz, a conservative from California and software entrepreneur who sponsored ballots initiatives opposing bilingual education. Although the campaign, “Free Harvard, Fair Harvard,” includes one left-leaning member — the consumer advocate Ralph Nader — Mr. Unz and the other three candidates have written or testified extensively against affirmative action, opposing race-based admissions.

加尼福尼亚保守派、软件创业人士罗恩·温茨(Ron Unz)团结了五位哈佛校友的力量。温茨资助过以反对双语教育为目标的多项选票倡议。虽然在这个“免费哈佛、公平哈佛”运动中有一位左倾成员——倡导消费者利益的拉尔夫·纳德(Ralph Nader)——但是温茨和其他三位候选人撰文或在听证会中不遗余力地作证,反对平权措施,反对基于族裔的录取制度。

Their positions are in lock step with accusations in a federal lawsuit accusing the university of discriminating against Asian-Americans in admissions. Harvard has denied the allegations.

他们的立场呼应着联邦法院的一宗关于哈佛大学在录取时歧视亚裔的诉讼。哈佛否认这些指控。

Coincidence or not, the plaintiffs in that case are seeking from Harvard exactly what the slate of candidates wants: disclosure of data showing how the university’s freshman class is selected each year.

不论是不是巧合,该诉讼中的原告对哈佛的要求和这群监事候选人的要求完全一致:公开数据,说明哈佛每年招录新生的情况。

The politically charged data holds the potential to reveal whether Harvard bypasses better-qualified Asian-American candidates in favor of whites, blacks and Hispanics, and the children of the wealthy and powerful, the group argues.

这些政治意味浓厚的数据有可能揭露哈佛是否有意忽略较为优秀的亚裔申请人,而青睐白人、黑人、拉丁裔以及权贵阶层的子女。

“Our focus is entirely on greater transparency in admissions,” Mr. Unz said, “namely urging Harvard to provide much more detailed information on how they select the very small slice of applicants receiving offers of admission, in order to curb the huge potential abuse possible under the entirely opaque system.”

“我们关注的仅仅是录取的透明度,”温茨说,“也就是敦促哈佛发布他们如何挑选那一小群成功申请者的详细信息,阻止在一套完全不透明的制度下惊人的潜在权力滥用。”

Whatever the political motivations of the slate, Mr. Unz and the other members have hit on two increasingly contentious issues in higher education: astronomical college costs and affirmative action.

不论这个候选人团体的政治动机如何,温茨等成员都抓住了高等教育中两个越来越有争议的话题:天文数字般的大学费用和平权措施。

The ballooning expense of college has become a hot topic in the presidential race, with several candidates proposing solutions ranging from government-financed tuition to the idea that private investors could finance college expenses in exchange for a share of an individual’s future earnings. Lawmakers on Capitol Hill have proposed an idea similar to the one held by Mr. Unz’s slate — that college endowments should be tapped to cover tuition.

上大学费用的急剧膨胀成为了总统大选的热门话题,多位候选人提出了解决方案,从政府拨款,到私人投资者出资以换取学生将来收入的一定比例。国会山的一些议员也提出了与温茨的团体类似的想法——大学收到的捐款也应该用来支付学费。

The United States Supreme Court is considering whether race should be used as a factor in college admissions. As so-called underrepresented minorities — blacks, Hispanics and Native Americans — get a boost at Harvard and many other colleges, Asian-Americans are among those who say they lose out.

美国最高法院正在考虑族裔是否应当作为大学录取的一个要素。因为所谓的弱势少数群体——黑人、拉丁裔和美洲土著——在哈佛和其他很多大学受到了优待,而亚裔则处于声称自身的机会受到剥夺的群体之列。

Mr. Unz and his group argue that the two issues are related. They say that once word spreads about a free Harvard education, the number of highly qualified candidates from all backgrounds will spike, and the university will no longer have trouble balancing its class for racial or ethnic diversity.

温茨和他的团体认为,这两个问题是关联的。他们称,一旦哈佛免学费的消息传开,来自各种背景的高水平候选者都会大幅增加,大学将不再存在平衡族裔多样性的问题。

And if Harvard abolishes tuition for undergrads, Mr. Nader said, “It will ricochet across the Ivy League.”

而如果哈佛为本科生免除学费,纳德说,“影响就将波及所有常春藤盟校。”

Maybe. Officials at Harvard suggested that even if the slate were to win, the idea is a nonstarter, pointing out that the endowment is split into thousands of funds designated for specific uses that have nothing to do with undergraduates.

也许吧。哈佛的管理层表示,即使这个团体成功,他们的这个想法也是天方夜谭。他们指出,哈佛的捐款分为数千个基金,它们各有具体用途,与本科生没有关系。

“There is a common misconception that endowments, including Harvard’s, can be accessed like bank accounts, used for anything at any time as long as funds are available,” Jeff Neal, a Harvard spokesman, said. “In reality, Harvard’s flexibility in spending from the endowment is limited by the fact that it must be maintained in perpetuity and that it is largely restricted by the explicit wishes of those who contributed the endowed funds.”

“有一个普遍的误解,就是包括哈佛在内的大学收到的捐款可以像有了一个银行账户一样随取随用,只要钱没有用完就行。”哈佛的一位发言人杰夫·尼尔(Jeff Neal)说,“事实上,哈佛在使用捐款时的灵活度受到很多限制,第一是必须是永续管理,第二是捐赠者的意愿。”

Mr. Neal also said that although tuition is high, Harvard, like many universities with large endowments, is generous with financial aid, awarding more than $1.4 billion to undergraduates in the past decade.

尼尔还说,虽然学费很高,但是像很多收到大笔捐款的大学一样,哈佛提供慷慨的助学金,在过去十年向本科生授予的助学金已超过14亿美元。

But Mr. Unz believes that even with the potential aid, prospective low-income applicants may be discouraged by the published tuition of $45,000 a year.

但是温茨认为,即使有可能获得助学金,有望入学的低收入申请者仍然会因公开的4.5万美元一年的学费而感到气馁。

Mr. Unz, whose 2012 data analysis of admissions at Harvard and other Ivy League institutions is cited in the case against the university, said his slate was not pressing to abolish affirmative action at Harvard, it was seeking only to get more information. But several members of the group are known for their past advocacy against using race in admissions.

温茨在2012年对哈佛和其他常春藤联盟院校的录取数据进行了分析,并以此反驳哈佛的说法。他表示,他的团队并不是向哈佛施压,要求废除平权措施,他们只是希望得到更多的信息。然而,该团体中的一些成员曾经公开反对把族裔因素纳入录取考量之中。

One is Lee C. Cheng, chief legal counsel for the online electronics retailer Newegg.com, who is co-founder of an organization that filed a brief in support of the white plaintiff in the lawsuit against the University of Texas that is before the Supreme Court.

郑立(Lee C. Cheng,音)就是其中之一。他是在线电子零售商新蛋网(Newegg.com)的首席法律顾问,联合创建的一家组织曾向最高法院递交过一份诉讼摘要文件,以支持一名白人原告对德克萨斯大学的诉讼。

Mr. Cheng is also quoted in the suit against Harvard, which was brought by Students for Fair Admissions.

在“大学生公平录取”(Students for Fair Admissions)组织对哈佛的诉讼中,也提及了郑立。

Another member of the slate is Stuart Taylor Jr., a former reporter for The New York Times who is co-author of a 2012 book contending that affirmative action harms minority students. And another is Stephen Hsu, a physicist and vice president at Michigan State University who has written against the use of race in college admissions.

该团体的另一个成员小斯图亚特·泰勒(Stuart Taylor Jr.)曾是《纽约时报》的记者。2012年,他与人合著了一本书,认为平权行动伤害了少数族裔学生。另一个成员史蒂芬·许(Stephen Hsu)是密歇根州立大学的物理学家和副校长,他也撰文反对将种族因素纳入大学招录之中。

Mr. Nader, who got his law degree from Harvard, said the admissions system has been “bollixed up for decades” by legacies and other preferences.

在哈佛获得法学学位的纳德称,因为传承原因和其他偏好,招录系统“这几十年来早已一片混乱”。

In court documents filed in the Fisher case, Harvard says a victory for the plaintiffs in the Students for Fair Admissions lawsuit would overturn its efforts to build a racially diverse class.

费舍尔案的庭审文件中,哈佛称,假如大学生公平录取组织一案中的原告赢得诉讼,就会逆转该校为建立种族多元的校园所做出的努力。

The Board of Overseers, with 30 members elected for rotating six-year terms, is the second most powerful board at the university. Members are generally elected from nominees selected by the Harvard Alumni Association.

由30个成员组成、每六年重新选举的哈佛大学监事会是哈佛权力第二大的委员会。成员大多经由哈佛校友会(Harvard Alumni Association)提名后选举产生。

To be placed on the ballot, other candidates must get petitions signed this month by 201 Harvard alumni.

为了进入投票环节,其他候选人必须在本月获得201位哈佛校友的签字推荐。

Mr. Unz, who these days is busy collecting signatures, believes his group stands a good chance. Part of his strategy apparently relies on low turnout among the 320,000 or so alumni, combined with the hope that an estimated 15,000 to 20,000 Asian-American graduates will be energized by the “Fair Harvard” plank.

这些天,温茨正忙于搜集签字。他认为他的团体的机会很大。显然,他的策略一方面取决于总人数32万左右的哈佛校友参与投票比例较低,另一方面要寄希望于“公平哈佛”的呼声能够让为数一万五到两万的亚裔美国校友振奋起来。

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