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Whitman Reaffirms Its Commitment to Diversity

A letter from Dr. Sarah Bolton and Whitman’s Board of Trustees

Aerial view of Ankeny field at Whitman College.

This letter was written to the Whitman College Community in early May 2023 in anticipation of  the upcoming Supreme Court of the United States decision on the use of race in admission decisions.

Dear Whitman Community, 

As we await a decision from the Supreme Court of the United States regarding the use of race in admission decisions, we write to reaffirm Whitman’s commitment to diversity as one of our core values. Admitting and supporting students whose identities reflect the breadth of our nation is both a moral imperative and central to our mission of providing a rigorous liberal arts education of the highest quality.

Regardless of the Court’s decision, Whitman College will continue to prioritize diversity, equity, inclusion and anti-racism and to seek a student body that is diverse in every way, including diversity of race and ethnicity. Just as important, we are committed to the work being done daily at Whitman College to fight racism and are committed to being a place where students, faculty and staff across a range of identities feel valued and welcomed. 

Having such an inclusive campus community is imperative to the education of our students. Learning amidst a broad range of perspectives, opinions, ideas, backgrounds and life experiences is essential to prepare our students for success in an increasingly diverse and global workforce. 

Whitman’s holistic admission process means that we consider a wide range of academic and personal factors in making admission decisions. To ensure that we continue to recruit a diverse student body, we will build our investments in financial aid, advance recruitment strategies that include a wide-range of types of schools, and grow our partnerships with organizations that serve underrepresented groups. 

In the months ahead we will be watching for a decision from the Court while we prepare for what comes next. Whitman will fully comply with the law. Regardless of the outcome of the case, the mission of Whitman College to draw a diverse population of students and to support them as they build meaningful lives of purpose will endure.  


Sarah Bolton, President
Joe Davis ’80, Chair of the Board of Trustees

Published on May 11, 2023
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