For Immediate Release

Ann Arbor, MI, June 21, 2022 — Dr. Earl Lewis of the University of Michigan and Dr. Nancy Cantor, chancellor of Rutgers University - Newark, are pleased to announce the latest installment of the Our Compelling Interest (OCI) series, The Wall Around Opportunity: The Failure of Colorblind Policy for Higher Education, by Dr. Gary Orfield, Distinguished Research Professor at UCLA Graduate School of Education and co-director of The Civil Rights Project at UCLA.

Launched in the fall of 2016 with support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Our Compelling Interests is one of five key projects housed at the University of Michigan's Center for Social Solutions. The series, edited by Cantor and Lewis, showcases insightful commentary on diversity and democracy from experts in their respective fields. Previous volumes include Our Compelling Interests: The Value of Diversity for Democracy and a Prosperous SocietyThe Diversity Bonus: How Great Teams Pay Off in the Knowledge Economy by Scott Page, and Out of Many Faiths: Religious Diversity and the American Promise by Eboo Patel. 

“This series was timely when first conceived, and its importance has only grown in recent years, as the centrality of diversity and democracy claim center stage in public spheres,” notes Lewis. 

In The Walls Around Opportunity, Orfield argues that major breakthroughs toward equity in education require race-conscious and race-sensitive policies in dimensions beyond admissions: preparation and financing.

“Fulfilling our country’s compelling interests to reap the benefits of an ever-increasingly diverse talent pool places educational opportunity as a pathway to social mobility center stage in the organizing premise of our book series, and this newest volume states the case perfectly,” observes Cantor. “Indeed,” added Lewis, “Gary Orfield has written a very thoughtful and provocative book about how color blindness has impeded rather than enhanced opportunity, and the ways the walling of opportunity hampers the creation of a fully prosperous democracy.” 

The Center for Social Solutions and Rutgers University – Newark will hold two book launch events in Los Angeles and Washington D.C. this Fall, 2022.

The Walls Around Opportunity can be purchased in hardcover and eBook format through the Princeton University Press website