WashU opens minority scholarship to all

ST. LOUIS -- A Washington University scholarship program previously available only to blacks is now open to students of all races, the university said Friday.

Several universities in Missouri reconsidered minority scholarships after being challenged by groups campaigning against racially targeted college programs.

The move came months after the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on the use of race in admissions at the University of Michigan.

The court's eventual ruling made clear colleges can select students based in part on race but may not use rigid racial quotas.

Washington University previously argued the Supreme Court's affirmative action rulings did not undermine the school's blacks-only John B. Ervin scholarships, which paid up to full tuition for as many as 10 students a year.

The new Ervin Scholars Program will still seek out students with intellectual, leadership and community service achievements as well as applicants interested in a career in education. The new factors will go into effect for the 2005-06 academic year, the school said.

McLeod told The Associated Press later Friday that it remained unclear how many scholarships would be offered or the financial amount of them.