Message From the Dean: Affirmative Action Rulings

Dean Gillian Lester sent a message to the Columbia Law community following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to ban the use of affirmative action in college admissions.

Dear members of the Columbia Law School community,

A short while ago, the University shared the statement below regarding the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in two cases challenging the use of affirmative action in higher education.

“The Columbia University community represents a wide array of experiences and backgrounds. This diversity is central to our identity — it reflects the cultural richness of New York City as well as our mission to foster meaningful interactions and prepare students to make a difference in the world.

We are reviewing the Supreme Court’s decision and will refrain from commenting further until we fully understand its implications. As we prepare to comply with the law, our commitment to our values is unwavering. Diversity is a positive force across every dimension of Columbia, and we can and must find a durable and meaningful path to preserve it.”

The Law School is working closely with the University administration as we gain a fuller understanding of the ruling and its implications. We remain steadfast in our commitment to fostering a diverse community—something that is core to our educational mission. We will come together in the months ahead to discuss the decision and what it means for our students, faculty, and staff. In the meantime, I will remain in contact; you may also find it helpful to review President Bollinger’s recent commentary on the cases. 

Gillian Lester
Dean and Lucy G. Moses Professor of Law