The Admissions Opportunity Campaign uses a combination of student engagement and administrative pressure to advocate for banning the box on the Princeton undergraduate application asking about conviction history. By the end of this year, the University must decide whether or not to include some version of the question on the Princeton application supplement. Because conviction history is based on a deeply unjust and discriminatory system, this question is not an unbiased indicator of culpability or character: instead, enables discrimination and undermines qualified students’ efforts to compete equally.
The precedent to remove the box has already been established in multiple institutions nationwide. Ott said that over 50 schools have removed the question, including the University of California system, the State University of New York system, Louisiana public universities, and Maryland public universities.
In addition, the U.S. Department of Education called on universities to reconsider the box in 2016, and the American Association of Colleges and Universities called on its members to reconsider these questions in May, Ott said. No Ivy League universities have yet banned the box. New Jersey job applications have banned the box by law.
Notably, there is no statistically significant differencein crime rates for schools with and without the box, and about 97 percent of students who commit misconduct on campuses have no prior criminal record.