- Some large tech companies made the case for affirmative action last week when the Supreme Court heard arguments on the issue, CNN reports.
- IBM and Intel both said colleges and universities should be allowed to consider race when admitting students as a way to increase diversity.
- Intel, Apple, Twitter and other tech companies have pledged to increase diversity after recent reports have shown that Silicon Valley is overwhelmingly white and male. Currently, 24% of Intel's employees are women and 12% are underrepresented minorities.
Affirmative action in admissions is an "essential step in any serious effort to address minority underrepresentation in the STEM fields," said a friend-of-the-court brief filed in November by IBM, Intel and others. The companies said affirmative action certainly isn't the only solution to the problem, but a "full court press" is needed to address the lack of diversity in STEM fields.
The case currently under consideration was brought by a white student who claims she was denied admission to the University of Texas at Austin because of its affirmative action admissions policy.
Most colleges are currently allowed to use affirmative action policies that consider race and ethnicity when admitting students.