George Floyd Scholarships, Only Open To Black Students, Are Illegal, Federal Complaint Alleges
A mural of George Floyd painted downtown to memorialize the life of George Floyd is shown on the anniversary of his death on May 25, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia.
Megan Varner/Getty Images

A George Floyd memorial scholarship open only to “Black or African American, that is, a person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa,” students violates the Civil Rights Act, a federal complaint says.

North Central University in Minneapolis, Minnesota, has offered the scholarship since June 2020, and says on its website that the memorial scholarship “is a four-year, full-tuition scholarship awarded to one student each year based on two community recommendations and a written essay.”

William Jacobson, a Cornell Law professor who runs the conservative website Legal Insurrection and founded the Equal Protection Project, filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights in Chicago, alleging the scholarship violates Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits schools from discriminating based on race.

“The George Floyd Scholarship eligibility requirements are openly racially discriminatory,” Jacobson told The College Fix. “Regardless of the purpose of the racial discrimination, it is wrong and unlawful.”

“NCU needs to come up with a remedial plan to compensate students shut out of the George Floyd Scholarship due to discrimination,” Jacobson added.

In addition to violating the federal Civil Rights Act, the scholarship also violates Minnesota’s Human Rights Act, Jacobson’s complaint alleges.

“Similarly, the [scholarship] defies the civil rights protections of Minnesota’s Human Rights Act, which makes it a criminal offense for an educational institution to limit access to any educational program on the basis of race,” a footnote in the complaint says.

Jacobson also told The College Fix that the Supreme Court’s decision last year on affirmative action should make clear that discriminating based on race is illegal.


“After the Supreme Court’s decision in [Students For Fair Admissions], it is clear that discriminating on the basis of race to achieve diversity is not lawful,” Jacobson told the Fix. “As Chief Justice Roberts wrote in the majority opinion, ‘[e]liminating racial discrimination means eliminating all of it.’”

In Justice Neil Gorsuch’s concurring opinion on the affirmative action ruling, he stated that it doesn’t “matter if the recipient discriminates against an individual member of a protected class with the idea that doing so might favor the interests of that class as a whole or otherwise promote equality at the group level.”

The Supreme Court ruling was based on allegations that Harvard discriminated against Asian and white students by enrolling students of other races over them, even when the Asian and white students had better test scores.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  George Floyd Scholarships, Only Open To Black Students, Are Illegal, Federal Complaint Alleges