Letter To The Editor: Diversity At Wake Forest

Letter To The Editor: Diversity At Wake Forest

In response to the “Editorial Board Reflects On Allman, Pittard Photos” staff editorial, I would like the editors to ask the administration and those involved selecting and admitting students to the university, what they are doing to increase diversity at Wake Forest. Is there a goal?  What is the plan?

The question is not entirely what Allman, assistant senior provost and dean of integration, and Associate Dean of Admissions Kevin Pittard did 30 years ago, but what they are doing now to make Wake Forest more diverse. People change over time, like U.S. Supreme Court Justice Hugh Black who went from a KKK member to a liberal on the court.

Is the Wake Forest diversity index from U.S. News improving? Wake Forest improved from 0.38 to 0.39 in two years.  In reality, this is probably just noise in the statistics, not really an improvement.

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Wake Forest ranks highly academically in the U.S. News national universities; however, on the U.S. News Campus Ethnic Diversity index Wake Forest badly trails its peers.

Wake Forest ranks 219th in national universities diversity index.

In order of academic rating in 2017, the top 27 universities have the following diversity ratings:

Princeton University:  0.66

Harvard University: 0.68

University of Chicago: 0.63

Yale University: 0.66

Columbia University: 0.70

Massachusetts Institute of Technology: 0.71

Stanford University: 0.74

University of Pennsylvania: 0.65

Duke University: 0.64

California Institute of Technology: 0.66

Dartmouth College: 0.63

Johns Hopkins University: 0.69

Northwestern University: 0.63

Brown University: 0.63

Cornell University: 0.65

Rice University: 0.69

Vanderbilt University: 0.58

University of Notre Dame: 0.43

Washington University in St. Louis: 0.58

Georgetown University: 0.58

Emory University: 0.65

University of California-Berkeley: 0.68

University of California-Los Angeles: 0.71

University of Southern California: 0.68

Carnegie Mellon University: 0.68

University of Virginia: 0.51

Wake Forest University: 0.38

Wake Forest needs to address the issue of diversity. What is the plan? What would it take to match UVA? Duke? Rice?

I suggest Wake Forest have an active recruitment plan. If it has one, why is it not working?

In the late 1960’s, Wake Forest invited a spokesman for the KKK to speak at Wait Chapel. I protested then, but it was a very lonely protest. I wrote a letter to the Old Gold & Black asking why the faculty had so few people of color, which got me the disapproval of the president.

Increases in diversity must be driven from the top. If we have a plan, what are the goals? How are they monitored? Is Wake Forest meeting the goals? What happens when Wake  Forest does not met the goals? If Wake Forest is meeting the goals it is time to review the goals.


Tom Daly ’69

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