Over the past year, the US Department of Education has opened several investigations into universities following complaints that they are systematically discriminating against male students.
Critics claim that by funding women-only scholarships and programmes, men are being unfairly denied opportunities.
“It’s really incomprehensible to me that with men being the minority [at universities] all these female-only scholarships are still going on,” said PhD student Kursat Pekgoz, who has filed several of the complaints.
“Colleges do not offer similar affirmative action programmes for men in the disciplines in which they are the minority,” he added.
But not everyone agrees.
Supporters of affirmative action programmes say the numbers don’t tell the whole story, because while men may be underrepresented in certain fields it is not due to the same institutional discrimination that held women back for decades.
“It’s concerning that the Department of Education is investigating these complaints rather than just dismissing them outright,” said Adaku Onyeka-Crawford, senior counsel at the National Women’s Law Center.
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