The Center for Individual Rights Is a Persistent Thorn in the Side of African-American Higher Education

The Center for Individual Rights has filed a federal lawsuit challenging a summer intern program for minority journalism students at Virginia Commonwealth University. The program is designed to increase the number of minority journalists and is not open to white students.

The summer intern program is operated by the university in conjunction with the Richmond Times-Dispatch and the Dow Jones Newspaper Fund. Similar programs are operated at about 20 colleges and universities nationwide.

The Center for Individual Rights has been a thorn in the side of black higher education since it was founded in 1989. CIR represented the plaintiff in the 1996 Hopwood case, which banned race-sensitive admissions in Texas. It later represented the plaintiffs in the two affirmative action cases at the University of Michigan. It has recently been active in securing a place on the November ballot for the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative, which, if enacted, would ban race-sensitive admissions at the University of Michigan.