Brown University conducting review of admissions, campus policies

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — In response to the national college admissions bribery scandal, Brown University announced a plan to review its practices, including the admissions process.

University President Christina Paxson sent a letter to the Brown community Tuesday highlighting the steps they’re taking to ensure the school’s policies, “align with Brown’s core values.”

According to Paxson, the university conducted an internal review in March of the admissions process for every recruited varsity athlete who enrolled at Brown over the last four years. She said the review yielded no concerns but will be followed by a more broader assessment to “gauge any exposure to risk from falsified admissions materials.”

“Preferential treatment, real or suspected, for students based on wealth or privilege is corrosive to our community,” she said in the letter.

Read President Christina Paxson’s full letter to the community

Paxson said since the national admissions investigation began, Brown has not been contacted by federal authorities. She plans to create a new committee of faculty and trustees to continue to review the admissions process, which will release a full report by the fall.

Brown’s Office of Institutional Risk Management, Audit and Compliance will also work closely with the university’s coaches and athletic department to determine how admissions procedures and protocols can be enhanced.

Paxson cited several instances from earlier this year where reports surfaced of students being given preferential treatment, citing reports of students receiving invitations to exclusive off-campus dinners supported by the university staff earlier this year.

In light of this, she said the university will also look into several other practices university-wide, “from alumni and parent engagement, to residential life, to academic concerns, to student conduct.”

“Although we cannot eradicate all of the effects of living in an unequal world,” Paxson explained. “Colleges and universities should not and cannot be places where educational opportunities are shaped by wealth.”

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