By Bill Mears, CNN Supreme Court Producer
(CNN) – The Supreme Court on Wednesday will hear oral arguments in an important affirmative-action case – whether the University of Texas’ race-conscious admissions policy violates the rights of some white applicants.
The justices will decide whether and when skin color and ethnicity can be used to create a diverse college campus. CNN gathered comments from three current or former students with a direct interest in the case. Their comments have been edited for clarity and brevity.
Abigail Fisher, plaintiff in the Supreme Court appeal
Fisher was denied admission to the state’s flagship university and filed a lawsuit challenging the selection process. She graduated this year from Louisiana State University, and issued a statement of her views, through her legal team.
FISHER: “I dreamt of going to UT (the University of Texas) ever since the second grade. My dad went there, my sister went there, and tons of friends and family. And it was a tradition I wanted to continue.
“There were people in my (high school) class with lower grades who weren’t in all the activities I was in, who were being accepted into UT. And the only difference between us was the color of our skin. I took a ton of AP (advanced placement) classes, I studied hard and did my homework, and I made the honor roll. I was in extracurricular activities – I played the cello, I was in math club, and I volunteered. I put in the work I thought was necessary to get into UT.
“I was taught from the time I was a little girl that any kind of discrimination was wrong. And for an institution of higher learning to act this way makes no sense to me. What kind of example does this set for others? A good start to stopping discrimination would be getting rid of the boxes on applications – male, female, race, whatever. Those don’t tell admissions people what type of student you are, or how involved you are. All they do is put you into a box, a theoretical box.