Admissions, Affirmative Action, and Penn

Saturday, September 24
1:00 - 2:00 PM
G-17, Claudia Cohen Hall
About this Session: With the recent supreme court ruling, the idea of affirmative action has been brought to the forefront of admissions officers across the country. How have these events influenced Penn's own decision making process for future Quakers? Presented by University of Pennsylvania Law School.

Featured Speakers

Eric J. Furda C'87

Dean of Admissions
University of Pennsylvania


Eric J. Furda, a 1987 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, has served as Penn's Dean of Admissions since 2008. Dean Furda has served as a higher education administrator for nearly three decades with 25 years of experience in admissions, including the position of Executive Director of Admissions at Columbia University in the City of New York from 1995 until 2004. He was appointed as the inaugural Vice President for Alumni Relations at Columbia University, a position he held from 2004-2008. Dean Furda earned a Master's degree from Teachers College Columbia University. While a student at Penn he was a four-year letterman on the varsity lightweight football team and was captain and MVP his senior year.

Over his career Dean Furda has served on or led committees for the Ivy League and the Consortium on Financing Higher Education (COFHE). He is currently on the Board of Directors for The Common Application and has served as Chair of the Board. He is currently a member of the scholarship selection committee for The Lenfest Foundation, based in Philadelphia. Dean Furda also hosts a show on college selection called The Process on SIRIUSXM Radio.

Vinay Harpalani, Ph.D. GED'99 GR'04 GR'05

Associate Professor of Law
Savannah Law School


Vinay Harpalani is Associate Professor of Law and teaches constitutional law, civil procedure, and employment discrimination. Prior to joining the faculty of Savannah Law School in August 2014, he was Visiting Assistant Professor of Law at the Chicago-Kent College of Law, Illinois Institute of Technology (2012-14), where he taught legal writing and Critical Race Theory. Professor Harpalani was also the inaugural academic fellow at the Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law and Equality, Seattle University School of Law (2010-12), where he taught seminar courses in education law and constitutional law; and the Derrick Bell Fellow at New York University (NYU) School of Law (2009-10), where he co-taught constitutional law courses with the late Professor Derrick Bell.

Professor Harpalani’s scholarship examines race-consciousness from both constitutional and interdisciplinary perspectives. He has written several law review articles on race-conscious university admissions, and three of these were cited in various U.S. Supreme Court amicus briefs in Fisher v. University of Texas. Additionally, Professor Harpalani has written on a variety of topics in Critical Race Theory, including racial ambiguity and the “acting White” phenomenon. His article “DesiCrit: Theorizing the Racial Ambiguity of South Asian Americans,” which was published in the NYU Annual Survey of American Law issue dedicated to Professor Derrick Bell, is perhaps the most comprehensive scholarly source on the racial classification of South Asian Americans (peoples in the U.S. whose ancestry derives from the Indian subcontinent), and it is also a pathbreaking work on the emerging topic of racial ambiguity.

Professor Harpalani graduated from NYU School of Law in 2009, where was an articles editor for the New York University Law Review, an Arthur Garfield Hays Civil Liberties Fellow, and a Derrick A. Bell Jr. Public Service Scholar. At NYU, he won the Gary E. Moncrieffe Award for “outstanding student in Racism and Law” and received a Vanderbilt Medal for "outstanding contributions to the school of law." Prior to law school, Professor Harpalani earned his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 2005 and also served as a lecturer at Penn.

Renee Post GED'99

Associate Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid
University of Pennsylvania Law School


Renee Post is the Associate Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. She received her B.A. in history and women’s studies from the University of Pittsburgh and her M.S.Ed in higher education administration from the University of Pennsylvania, Graduate School of Education. She began her career at the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 1999 as an Admissions Officer. In 2001, she was promoted to Associate Director, and in 2002 she served briefly as Interim Assistant Dean for Admissions and Financial Aid. She left Penn Law in 2002 and worked as a Consultant. In 2005, she returned to Penn Law as the Director of Admissions and was promoted to Associate Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid in March of 2007. Dean Post has served on various national committees for the Law School Admission Council, most recently serving as a member of the LSAC Board of Trustees.

Stacy Hawkins

Associate Professor
Rutgers Law School


Professor Stacy Hawkins is an Associate Professor at Rutgers Law School where she teaches Employment Law, Constitutional Law and an original seminar on Diversity and the Law. Her scholarship focuses on the intersection of law and diversity and has been published in the Fordham Law Review, the University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law and the Columbia Journal of Race and Law. She has also been a frequent contributor to a monthly column in The Legal Intelligencer focusing on diversity in the legal profession.

Prior to law teaching, Professor Hawkins spent more than a decade in private practice advising clients in both the public and private sector on the development of legally defensible diversity policies and programs. She holds a number of professional and civic appointments, including as a member of the Advisory Board of the Public Interest Law Center, as an inaugural member of the Pennsylvania Bar Association Diversity Team, and as co-chair of the Diversity Committee for the Pennsylvania Bar Association Commission on Women in the Profession.

Wendy White L'75

Senior Vice President and General Counsel
University of Pennsylvania and Penn Medicine


Wendy White is the Senior Vice President and General Counsel of the University of Pennsylvania and Penn Medicine. Previously, Ms. White held the positions of Vice President and General Counsel (2001-2003) and Deputy General Counsel of the University (1999-2001). She formerly was a partner in the law firm of Shea & Gardner in Washington, D.C., during the period 1981 – 1999, where she specialized in issues relating to non-profit institutions, labor and employment, products liability and commercial litigation. In addition, Ms. White served as Associate Counsel to the President of the United States in 1996-1997. Ms. White attended Goucher College (A.B., magna cum laude, 1972) where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She received her law degree from the University of Pennsylvania (J.D., magna cum laude), was an editor of the Law Review and a member of Order of the Coif. Ms. White is a member of the American Law Institute, the Board of Governors of the NASDAQ LLC, NASDAQ OMX PHLX, Inc., and NASDAQ OMX BX, Inc., and Chairs the Board of InterAct Theatre Company in Philadelphia She is a member of the Pennsylvania Bar and the District of Columbia Bar. Ms. White is a frequent speaker on labor and employment, higher education and ethics issues. She has two children, Miriam (son in law Nicholas Kuperman) and Andrew (daughter in law Amy Ludwig) and resides in Pennsylvania with her husband Lawrence.

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