Coalition for Equity and Excellence in Maryland Higher Education et al v. Ehrlich et al
MEMORANDUM. Signed by Judge Catherine C. Blake on 11/8/2017. (jnls, Deputy Clerk)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF MARYLAND
THE COALITION FOR EQUITY AND
EXCELLENCE IN MARYLAND
HIGHER EDUCATION, et al.
MARYLAND HIGHER EDUCATION
COMMISSION, et al.
Civil No. CCB-06-2773
TABLE OF CONTENTS
INTRODUCTION .............................................................................................................. 2
PROCEDURAL HISTORY................................................................................................ 4
PRELIMINARY ISSUES ................................................................................................... 7
Standing .................................................................................................................. 8
Defendants’ Daubert Motion .................................................................................. 9
Standard for Admissibility ........................................................................ 10
Reliability of Conrad and Allen’s Testimony ........................................... 11
Permanent Injunction ............................................................................................ 19
PROPOSED REMEDIES ................................................................................................. 21
The State’s Remedial Proposals............................................................................ 22
The Plaintiffs’ Remedial Proposals ...................................................................... 23
New Programs ........................................................................................... 25
Academic Program Transfers ................................................................... 27
a. Faculty and Students........................................................................... 28
b. Partnerships and Investments ............................................................. 31
c. Maryland’s Workforce Needs in STEM and Nursing ........................ 32
d. UMUC Issues ..................................................................................... 32
MHEC Program Approval Process ........................................................... 35
Effectiveness of the Plaintiffs’ Proposed Remedy.................................... 38
Cost of the Plaintiffs’ Remedial Proposal ................................................. 40
Impact of the Plaintiffs’ Proposal on Institutional Accreditation ............. 44
The HBIs’ Remedial Proposals ............................................................................. 45
Morgan ...................................................................................................... 47
UMES ....................................................................................................... 48
Coppin ....................................................................................................... 46
Bowie ........................................................................................................ 48
HISTORICAL RECORD.................................................................................................. 49
Historical Support for Unique, High-Demand Programs ..................................... 49
Previous Remedies Under Fordice Standard ........................................................ 54
Tennessee .................................................................................................. 57
Alabama .................................................................................................... 59
Mississippi ................................................................................................ 54
Louisiana ................................................................................................... 60
ANALYSIS ....................................................................................................................... 61
Program Transfers ................................................................................................. 66
Funding for Recruitment, Financial Aid, and Marketing ..................................... 68
New Programs ....................................................................................................... 63
MHEC Process ...................................................................................................... 69
REMEDY FOR MARYLAND ......................................................................................... 69
The years of segregation under law at Maryland's public institutions of higher education
came to an end some decades ago, and the State has much to be proud of in its public colleges
and universities. Maryland’s distinguished historically black institutions (“HBIs”) serve a vital
mission in our system of public higher education. Yet current policies and practices traceable to
the de jure system, in the form of unnecessary program duplication having segregative effects at
the HBIs, persist. In such circumstances, the Supreme Court has placed the burden squarely on
the state to reform such policies “to the extent practicable and consistent with sound educational
practices.” U.S. v. Fordice, 505 U.S. 717, 729 (1992).
In the several years since this court found that the plaintiffs, including the Coalition for
Equity and Excellence in Maryland Higher Education (“the Coalition”), had proved the existence
of unnecessary program duplication having segregative effectives at the HBIs, mediation proved
unsuccessful and a lengthy remedies hearing followed. Unfortunately, the State did not engage in
a serious effort to propose a remedy prior to the hearing and did not permit the Coalition’s
experts to consult meaningfully with relevant state actors including the presidents and faculty of
the HBIs and of the state’s traditionally white institutions (“TWIs”). 1 As more fully explained
below, the court is forced to conclude that neither side’s proposed remedies are, for different
reasons, sufficiently practicable, educationally sound, and likely to achieve the greatest possible
reduction in segregative effects to justify ordering their imposition. Instead, the court will order
appointment of a Special Master, authorized to consult with all relevant decision makers, to
propose a remedial plan including funding for new programs and student recruitment at the
HBIs, but not the extensive transfer of programs from the TWIs to the HBIs requested by the
All parties need to recall that this case is not about institutions but about the
constitutional right of students to attend any public college or university for which they are
qualified without being required to accept racial segregation at that institution. Maryland’s TWIs
already meet that standard of integration; Maryland’s HBIs do not. A remedial plan must
encourage other-race students to attend the HBIs, but it will not be educationally sound if it
The four HBIs are Morgan State University, University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Coppin State University, and
Bowie State University. Institutions that have been referred to as TWIs include Towson University; the University
of Baltimore (“UB”); the University of Maryland Baltimore County (“UMBC”); the University of Maryland
University College (“UMUC”); Frostburg State University; Salisbury University; University of Maryland, College
Park (“UMCP”); and St. Mary’s College of Maryland.
unduly harms the students at the integrated TWIs. Crafting such a plan is a daunting task
requiring the good faith collaboration of the Coalition and the State. The court urges such
collaboration to strengthen and enhance Maryland’s HBIs for the benefit of all Maryland
students, present and future.
II. PROCEDURAL HISTORY
This action dates back to 2006. Plaintiffs, The Coalition for Equity and Excellence in
Maryland Higher Education and named individuals associated with the organization,
(collectively, “the Coalition” or “the plaintiffs”), sued the State of Maryland, the Maryland
Higher Education Commission (“MHEC”), and their officers in their official capacities
(collectively, “the State” or “the defendants”), alleging violations of Title VI of the Civil Rights
Act of 1964 and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. After a bench trial,
the court issued an opinion in 2013 holding that under United States v. Fordice, 505 U.S. 717
(1992), unnecessary program duplication within Maryland’s system of higher education
continues to have segregative effects for which the State has no sound educational justification.
Coal. for Equity & Excellence in Md. Higher Educ. v. Md. Higher Educ. Comm’n, 977 F. Supp.
2d 507, 544 (D. Md. 2013).2 Mediation regarding possible remedies commenced in January 2014
and continued for more than one year but was ultimately unsuccessful. (See Oct. 2, 2014 Order,
ECF No. 398).
The parties then submitted competing remedial proposals to the court. The plaintiffs
submitted an initial remedial proposal on May 5, 2015. (Pls.’ First Remedial Proposal, ECF No.
406). The State filed its initial remedial proposal on November 20, 2015. (Defs.’ First Remedial
The court rejected the plaintiffs’ claim that Maryland’s current higher education funding policies could be traced to
Maryland’s de jure funding practices. See Coal. for Equity & Excellence in Md. Higher Educ. v. Md. Higher Educ.
Comm’n, 977 F. Supp. 2d 507, 529-35 (D. Md. 2013)
Proposal, ECF No. 447). On February 2, 2016, the court concluded that an evidentiary hearing
was needed “to inform the court on the complex question of what remedies are educationally
sound, justified by the scope of the violation found, and best targeted to remedy that violation
while enhancing rather than harming Maryland’s system of public education.” (Feb. 2, 2016
Mem. and Order, ECF No. 460).3 The court stated that the defendants’ remedial proposals “are
neither adequate nor sufficiently specific,” although it noted that collaborative programs—one
aspect of the State’s first remedial proposal—“are indeed helpful in certain circumstances.” (Id.
at 2). The court also noted that the plaintiffs’ proposals “for creation of niche areas of
programmatic concentration, with increased new and high-demand offerings, appear promising
but need more thorough discussion.” (Id.). Finally, the court rejected the proposal of having
Morgan State University (“Morgan”) take over the University of Baltimore (“UB”) and noted it
was unlikely to order a remedy “that would essentially eliminate” the University of Maryland
University College (“UMUC”). (Id. at 2 n.2).
On June 1, 2016, the State filed a motion for a protective order to prevent the plaintiffs
from using or relying on mediation materials prepared and shared among the parties and the
mediator. In particular, the presidents of Maryland’s HBIs had developed proposals listing
courses (and associated funding) that each institution would prioritize in the context of a
proposed settlement; the defendants sought to block the plaintiffs from using these submissions
in the court proceedings on remedy. (Defs.’ Mot. for Protective Order, ECF No. 469). On August
12, 2016, the court granted in part and denied in part the plaintiffs’ motion. Specifically, because
of the confidentiality requirement in Local Rule 607.4, the court ordered that HBI submissions
Accordingly, the court denied the plaintiffs’ motion for judgment on their remedial proposal. (Feb. 2, 2016 Mem.
and Order at 2, ECF No. 460).
be stricken as exhibits from the plaintiffs’ expert reports, but the court declined to strike the
expert reports themselves. (Aug. 12, 2016 Order, ECF No. 485).
In the months leading up to the six-week remedies hearing—which took place in January
and February 2017—the parties filed several other motions. On September 30, 2016, the State
moved to exclude expert testimony concerning the effects of “programmatic niches,” “highdemand” programs, and “unique” programs on HBI enrollment by other-race students, claiming
such testimony is inadmissible under Fed. R. Evid. 702. (Defs.’ Mot. to Exclude Expert
Testimony, ECF No. 495) (“Daubert motion”). The plaintiffs responded in opposition to the
Daubert motion on December 9, 2016. (Pls.’ Resp. in Opp’n to Mot. to Exclude Expert
Testimony, ECF No. 528) (“Daubert Opp.”). In part, the plaintiffs urged the court not to rule on
the motion to exclude expert testimony before the remedies hearing. (Id. at 32). The court agreed
with the plaintiffs and declined to rule on the Daubert motion before the remedies hearing
commenced in January 2017.
In addition to the Daubert motion, the State filed a motion to compel the plaintiffs to
answer discovery requests related to the plaintiffs’ Article III standing. (Defs.’ Mot. to Compel,
ECF No. 503). On December 16, 2016, the court denied the motion to compel additional
discovery. (Mem. and Order, ECF No. 536).
Prior to the remedies trial, the two sides also filed various motions in limine. On
November 30, 2016, the plaintiffs filed a motion in limine to prohibit the State from presenting
evidence at trial that, according to the plaintiffs, would re-litigate the liability findings. (Pls.’
Mot. in Limine, ECF No. 522). On December 16, 2016, the court granted the plaintiffs’ motion
in limine insofar as it sought to prevent re-litigating the liability findings but denied it insofar as
it sought to strike a particular statistical analysis. (Order, ECF No. 537). Also on November 30,
2016, the State filed its first motion in limine to exclude evidence about injunctive relief at the
University of Maryland Eastern Shore (“UMES”). (Defs.’ First Mot. in Limine, ECF No. 520).
The court again declined to rule before the hearing.
On December 14, 2016, the State filed a second motion in limine to exclude from use at
trial a dissertation written by Brandon Daniels and to bar the plaintiffs’ experts from relying
upon it. (Defs.’ Second Mot. in Limine, ECF No. 530). Also on December 14, 2016, the
defendants filed a third motion in limine seeking to exclude written responses from the HBIs
concerning which programs would be best suited at each HBI to desegregate that HBI and
contribute to its academic identity. (Defs.’ Third Mot. in Limine, ECF No. 531). On December
28, 2016, the defendants filed a fourth motion in limine to preclude the plaintiffs from presenting
certain testimony and exhibits related to the proposed transfer of engineering programs from the
University of Maryland Baltimore County (“UMBC”) to Morgan. (Defs.’ Fourth Mot. in Limine,
ECF No. 538). Since the hearing, the court has ruled on the motions, which were denied. (Sept.
29, 2017 Order, ECF No. 640).
The court held a six-week hearing on remedies in January and February, 2017. Post-trial
briefing concluded on June 2, 2017, and on June 8, 2017, counsel presented oral argument.
This opinion constitutes the court’s findings of fact and conclusions of law under Fed. R.
Civ. P. 52.
III. PRELIMINARY ISSUES
Before reviewing the parties’ proposed remedies, the court must consider three
preliminary issues: standing; the admissibility of the plaintiffs’ expert testimony; and the
propriety of injunctive relief.
Although this court found standing in its 2013 liability ruling, and again in a 2016
memorandum issued prior to the start of the remedies hearing, the State continues to assert that
plaintiffs lack standing. The court will briefly address the State’s revived arguments.
Constitutional standing is a “fundamental limitation” requiring injury in fact, traceability,
and redressability. Town of Chester, N.Y. v. Laroe Estates, Inc., 137 S. Ct. 1645, 1650 (2017).
The Supreme Court recently explained that “[a]t least one plaintiff must have standing to seek
each form of relief requested in the complaint.” Id. at 1651. “In the absence of injury to itself, an
association may have standing solely as the representative of its members.” Warth v. Seldin, 422
U.S. 490, 511 (1975). The Coalition has standing in this case so long as “just one of [its] . . .
members would have standing.” Retail Indus. Leaders Assoc. v. Fielder, 475 F.3d 180, 186 (4th
Cir. 2007). David Burton, the founding member of the Coalition, reiterated by affidavit that
“[s]tudents enrolled at Maryland’s HBIs have been members of the Coalition throughout the
entire duration of this case.” (Aff. of David Burton ¶ 4, ECF No. 508-1; see also Current Student
Affs. ¶ 2, ECF Nos. 508-2, -3, -4, & -5). The State’s only attempt to rebut this assertion is to note
that one of the students, Chinedu Nwokeafor, a senior at Morgan State, expected to graduate in
2017.4 Even if Mr. Nwokeafor graduated, the Coalition still has provided declarations from
three current Maryland HBI student members. (Current Student Affs. ¶ 1, ECF Nos. 508-2, -3, &
-5). The Coalition seeks injunctive relief applicable to all HBI students, and the record indicates
that continuing student membership in the Coalition is probable.
The State assumes Mr. Nwokeafor intends to graduate in May 2017. The court notes that, as Morgan State holds
annual graduation ceremonies in both May and December, Mr. Nwokeafor’s actual date of graduation is
http://commencement.morgan.edu/ (last visited October 27, 2017).
The State also argues that the student declarations fail to establish injury-in-fact. The four
current student members of the coalition all provided declarations noting “the injury to students
such as [themselves] based on the ongoing segregative effects of Maryland’s policy of program
duplication.” (Current Student Affs. ¶ 5, ECF Nos. 508-2, -3, -4, & -5). The State’s assertion that
the currently enrolled students needed to specifically demonstrate a desire for and denial of an
integrated education is without merit. As this court noted in its 2013 memorandum, “if the
Coalition demonstrate[s] that any one of its members is subject to ongoing segregative policies
traceable to the de jure era and attributable to the state . . . then the Coalition has shown a
justiciable injury.” (Oct. 7, 2013 Mem. at 18, ECF No. 382).
Defendants’ Daubert Motion
In September 2016, defendants filed a motion seeking to exclude the opinion testimony
of plaintiffs’ experts, Drs. Clifton Conrad and Walter Allen (“Conrad and Allen”), under Federal
Rule of Evidence 702 and Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 509 U.S. 579 (1993).
(Daubert Mot., ECF No. 495). The court deferred consideration of the motion, and Conrad and
Allen testified at the remedies hearing—subject to defendants’ ongoing Daubert objection—
regarding various aspects of their remedial proposal, including the effect of programmatic
niches, unique programs, and high-demand programs on HBI enrollment of white and other-race
students. Following the hearing, the parties submitted additional briefing and correspondence
regarding the Daubert issue. Now, defendants ask the court to grant the motion to exclude and
to strike Conrad and Allen’s testimony from the record. For the reasons explained below, the
court has denied the motion.
Standard for Admissibility
Under Daubert, district courts perform a “gatekeeping” function to ensure that expert
testimony is both relevant and reliable. Cooper v. Smith & Nephew, Inc., 259 F.3d 194, 199 (4th
Cir. 2001) (citing Daubert, 509 U.S. at 588); see also Kumho Tire Co., Ltd. v. Carmichael, 526
U.S. 137, 141 (1999) (extending Daubert’s analysis to expert testimony based on “technical” and
“other specialized,” as well as “scientific,” knowledge). The source of this obligation is Federal
Rule of Evidence 702, which provides that
a witness who is qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or
education” may offer opinion testimony if “(a) the expert’s scientific, technical, or other
specialized knowledge will help the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to
determine a fact in issue; (b) the testimony is based on sufficient facts or data; (c) the
testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods; and (d) the expert has reliably
applied the principles and methods to the facts of the case.
Fed. R. Evid. 702. The proponent of the expert testimony bears the burden to establish its
admissibility by a preponderance of the evidence. Cooper, 259 F.3d at 199.
The Supreme Court in Daubert identified a flexible, non-exhaustive set of factors to
guide courts in evaluating the reliability of expert testimony. See Daubert, 509 U.S. at 592-594.
These factors include: “(1) whether a theory or technique can be or has been tested; (2) whether
it has been subjected to peer review and publication; (3) whether a technique has a high known
or potential rate of error and whether there are standards controlling its operation; and (4)
whether the theory or technique enjoys general acceptance within a relevant scientific
community.” Cooper, 259 F.3d at 199 (citing Daubert, 509 U.S. at 592-94). A district court
need not consider every factor in every case, and “particular factors may or may not be pertinent
in assessing reliability, depending on the nature of the issue, the expert’s particular expertise, and
the subject of his testimony.” Id. at 200 (citing Kumho Tire, 526 U.S. at 150). Courts have
recognized a particular need to employ a “flexible” test in areas outside of the hard sciences.
See, e.g., U.S. v. Simmons, 470 F.3d 1115, 1122-23 (5th Cir. 2006) (admitting the testimony of a
psychologist that did not satisfy all four Daubert factors).
Reliability of Conrad and Allen’s Testimony5
Defendants assert that the “Plaintiffs seek to offer expert opinion testimony that is
unsupported by any social science methodology at all (with regard to the effect of ‘programmatic
niches’) and by unsound and unreliable social science (with regard to the effects of ‘highdemand’ or ‘unique’ programs).” (Daubert Mot., ECF No. 495, at 1). Specifically, they contend
that (1) Conrad and Allen offer no social science basis for their conclusions regarding
programmatic niches; (2) the methodology of Dr. Conrad’s 1994 study is unreliable, and there is
no social science basis for generalizing from it; (3) the methodology of the 2016 enrollment
study is unreliable; and (4) Conrad and Allen’s personal experiences, including campus visits
and conversations with students at HBIs, are not a reliable basis for their testimony. Plaintiffs
respond, among other things, that a less rigid test for reliability applies outside of the hard
sciences; that Conrad and Allen’s analysis complied with relevant standards; that Dr. Conrad’s
1994 study is only one piece in a “vast body of evidence” upon which Conrad and Allen based
their remedial proposal, (Daubert Opp. at 4, ECF No. 528); and that the defendants’ criticisms
go to the weight, rather than the admissibility, of Conrad and Allen’s testimony.
Rule 702 requires the court to determine both whether a witness is “qualified” as an expert and whether the
proposed testimony is reliable and relevant. See Fed. R. Evid. 702; Cooper, 259 F.3d at 199 (citing Daubert, 509
U.S. at 588). Defendants challenge only the reliability, not the relevance, of Conrad and Allen’s opinions. (See
Daubert Mot. at 5 (“The reason to bar the gate in this case is the unreliability of the methodology Plaintiffs’ experts
deploy to support their opinions.”).) Defendants also appear to challenge Conrad and Allen’s qualifications to offer
opinions as to remedy, although Dr. Allen was previously qualified as an expert in remedy, among other areas, and
defendants do not raise specific objections to either his or Dr. Conrad’s qualifications. In any case, mindful that
whether a witness is qualified to testify as an expert depends upon “the nature of the opinion he offers,” see Gladhill
v. Gen. Motors Corp., 743 F.2d 1049, 1052 (4th Cir. 1984), the court again finds that Conrad and Allen’s
“knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education”—including their extensive experience in the areas of higher
education desegregation research and litigation—qualifies them to provide opinions in this case, see Fed. R. Evid.
702. The court’s Daubert analysis thus will focus on whether their opinions are reliable.
The question before the court is whether Conrad and Allen’s opinions are “based on
sufficient facts or data” and are “the product of reliable principles and methods . . . [that were]
reliably applied . . . to the facts of the case.” See Fed. R. Evid. 702. For the reasons discussed
below, the court finds that they satisfy this standard.
First, the record reflects that Conrad and Allen relied on a wide range of authorities in
developing their remedial proposal, considering “historical factors” as well as “documents and
court records.” (See 1/19/17 AM Trial Tr. at 6). At the remedies hearing, Conrad and Allen
specifically cited, among other sources: guidance from the Department of Education, Office of
Civil Rights (“OCR”), (1/18/17 PM Trial Tr. at 4, 5-6 (Allen)); the 2000 Partnership Agreement
between OCR and the state of Maryland, (Id. at 4, 6-7); the report of the Maryland Cox Task
Force, (Id. at 5, 7); the 2006 Committee 1 report (Id. at 5, 7-8); the 2008 HBI panel, (Id. at 8); the
2009 Maryland State Plan for Higher Education, (Id. at 5, 8-9); the 2005 letter from the four HBI
presidents, (Id. at 10); records associated with higher education desegregation litigation in other
states, (Id. at 11); academic research and scholarship, (Id. at 5); Dr. Conrad’s 1994 study,
(1/24/17 Trial Tr. at 31-35 (Conrad)); enrollment trend data (1/18/17 AM Trial Tr. at 81 (Allen));
and their personal and professional experiences, (Id.; 1/24/17 Trial Tr. at 25 (Conrad)). Conrad
and Allen reference each of these sources in some part of the Second Corrected Reply Report,
and the majority of them appear in the sections of the report that defendants identify as
appropriate locations for such disclosures, (see Reply, Mot. to Exclude Expert Testimony at 5,
ECF No. 529 (“Daubert Reply”)); “Basis for Opinions,” (Final Expert Report, PRX 312 ¶¶ 8596); “Data and Materials Considered,” (id. ¶¶ 97-104); “Overview of Methodology,” (id. ¶¶ 7482), and Exhibit 18, “Materials Considered,” (id. Ex. 18). In short, the Second Corrected Reply
Report and supporting testimony demonstrate that Conrad and Allen based their remedial
proposal on “sufficient facts or data.” (See Fed. R. Evid. 702(b)).6
Second, Conrad and Allen utilized processes that, despite some methodological flaws, are
sufficiently reliable to support admission of their testimony. (See Fed. R. Evid. 702(c)-(d)).
There is no one-size-fits-all test for reliability; rather, an expert’s opinions are reliable if they
comply with the standards of the “relevant field.” See Cooper, 259 F.3d at 203 (quoting Kumho
Tire, 526 U.S. at 152) (“[T]he purpose of Rule 702’s gatekeeping requirement is to ‘make certain
that an expert . . . employs in the courtroom the same level of intellectual rigor that characterizes
the practice of an expert in the relevant field.”). Here, Conrad and Allen’s opinions—
summarized in their 240-page final report and extensive supporting testimony—encompass
multiple subject-matter areas and modes of analysis. Thus, the court will look to the standards of
various “field[s],” see id.—among them general principles of social science research, best
practices in higher education desegregation, and requirements of quantitative and qualitative
analysis—in evaluating the reliability of Conrad and Allen’s remedial proposal.
As Dr. Allen explained at the remedies hearing, he and Dr. Conrad used “a mixedmethods approach” to arrive at their conclusions. (1/19/17 AM Trial Tr. at 5 (Allen)). They
considered available information “in conjunction with and in connection to the patterns of
enrollment that were existent and that were anticipated or desired.” (Id. at 6). They “drew from
multiple sources” and would “look at the data, go back and look at the patterns, look at sources,
look at historical factors, look at the characteristics of the institutions, and so accepted, embraced
the fact that those different dimensions are interactive.” (Id. at 11). They produced original
analysis, most notably the 2016 enrollment study, in addition to reviewing and interpreting
Because Rule 702 requires the court to determine whether an expert has a reliable basis for his opinion, not
whether corroborating evidence exists, the court will not consider plaintiffs’ arguments regarding sources upon
which Conrad and Allen did not rely. (See, e.g., Opp. to Daubert Mot., ECF No. 528, at 20-23).
existing documents. Dr. Allen described their work as “an iterative process.” (Id.). Dr. Conrad
explained that they were engaged in “sifting and winnowing.” (1/24/17 Trial Tr. at 148, 188,
198; 1/25/17 Trial Tr. at 19, 24, 25, 48, 65, 112, 126 (Conrad)).
Conrad and Allen’s approach is “one generally employed in the social sciences.” See
U.S. v. Hammoud, 381 F.3d 316, 337 (4th Cir. 2004) (en banc). 7 In Hammoud, the Fourth
Circuit upheld the admission of opinion testimony the expert described as follows:
Well, we’re talking about a social science here. This is not scientific research.
Basic academic intellectual research combined with the techniques I was taught in
. . . various courses I took as an analyst for the government both taught that the
best way to go about making sense of something in the social sciences is to collect
as much information as possible and to balance each new incoming piece of
information against the body of information that you’ve built to that point . . . . So
it’s a constant vetting process. And the more rigorous you are, the better your
information will be.
381 F.3d at 337. This explanation closely resembles Conrad and Allen’s descriptions of their
“iterative” process in this case, including the following account by Dr. Allen:
As is consistent with any research process, we reviewed multiple sources of
information and data. We then, in our conversations, exchanges, reading, and
analysis of those data sources, formulated comprehensive strategies and, out of
those strategies and out of the analysis went through a process that led to the
presentation of a set of formalized or formal recommendations.
I should emphasize that this process was iterative. It wasn’t a strict and simple
linear process. That is, things that we learned along the way, we used to inform,
revise, and refocus at points the report.
(1/18/17 AM Trial Tr. at 76-77 (Allen)).
In Hammoud, the Fourth Circuit affirmed a criminal defendant’s convictions and sentence, considering, among
other issues, the defendant’s Daubert challenge. Hammoud, 381 F.3d at 336-37, 357. Subsequently, the Supreme
Court granted certiorari, vacated the decision, and remanded for reconsideration in light of United States v. Booker,
543 U.S. 220 (2005). See Hammoud v. US, 543 U.S. 1097 (2005). The Fourth Circuit vacated Hammoud’s sentence
and remanded for resentencing under the advisory guidelines scheme set forth in Booker. U.S. v. Hammoud, 405
F.3d 1034 (4th Cir. 2005) (mem.). Because the Supreme Court’s order did not affect the court’s resolution of
Hammoud’s challenges to his convictions, including his Daubert challenge, the Fourth Circuit reinstated those
portions of its prior opinion. Id.
Defendants contend that Conrad and Allen’s opinions fail to satisfy the relevant standard
because they are based on unreliable social science or have no social science basis at all. (See
Daubert Reply at 6-8, ECF No. 529 (capitalization altered)). In particular, defendants appear to
discount Conrad and Allen’s reliance on any sources other than specific qualitative and
quantitative studies, including historical documents. As Hammoud makes clear, however, the
review and analysis of a body of information—whether in the form of studies, raw data, or
historical documents like committee reports—is itself a generally accepted approach in the social
science field. See Hammoud, 381 F.3d at 337. Such a process is especially appropriate where,
as here, the subject matter is complex and not susceptible to resolution by any single mode of
Further, to the extent that Conrad and Allen base their opinions on their experience,
rather than a particular social science methodology, the applicable standard is the one that
governs testimony by experiential experts. An experiential expert may testify on the basis of
either “experience alone” or “experience in conjunction with other knowledge, skill, training or
education.” U.S. v. Wilson, 484 F.3d 267, 274 (4th Cir. 2007) (quoting Fed. R. Evid. 702
advisory committee’s note). Such testimony satisfies the reliability requirement where the expert
can “explain how [his] experience leads to the conclusion reached, why [his] experience is a
sufficient basis for the opinion, and how [his] experience is reliably applied to the facts.” Id.
(quoting Fed. R. Evid. 702 advisory committee’s note). Applying this standard, the court finds
that Conrad and Allen have sufficiently explained how their experience in the field of higher
education desegregation—including as expert witnesses in similar litigation—informed their
recommendations in this case. (See, e.g., 1/18/17 AM Trial Tr. at 74-75 (Allen) (discussing
experience developing remedial proposals); 1/18/17 PM Trial Tr. at 36-38 (Allen) (discussing
experience with “what worked and didn’t work” and familiarity with the role of independent
monitors and monitoring committees); 1/19/17 AM Trial Tr. at 6-7 (Allen) (discussing
experience with the use of qualitative versus quantitative data and appropriateness of quantitative
testing); 1/19/17 AM Trial Tr. at 29-30 (Allen) (discussing types of data relied on by courts in
previous cases); 1/19/17 AM Trial Tr. at 34 (Allen) (explaining that recommendations in
remedial proposal are based in part on “experiences and lessons learned from earlier remedial
proposals”); 1/19/17 AM Trial Tr. at 48-49 (Allen) (explaining that the “mixed-methods
analysis” used to create the remedial proposal incorporated “prior experience with remedial
[proposals] and prior experience with the desegregation of systems of higher education”); see
also 1/24/17 Trial Tr. at 184-86 (Conrad) (discussing “extensive experience visiting HBCUS”).8
Of course, to the extent that Conrad and Allen’s remedial proposal does rely on specific
quantitative or qualitative studies, the court must determine whether the methodology of the
studies they employed satisfies Rule 702. See Cooper, 259 F.3d at 200 (citing Kumho Tire, 526
U.S. at 152 and Oglesby v. General Motors Corp., 190 F.3d 244, 250 (4th Cir. 1999)). Through
the testimony of Dr. Lichtman and Dr. Bastedo, as well as exhibits filed with their Daubert
motion, defendants presented a number of specific criticisms of Dr. Conrad’s 1994 study and the
2016 enrollment analysis, including claims related to generalizability, bias, and flaws in research
design and execution. Although, in certain instances, it is possible for such errors to warrant
exclusion, see In re Scrap Metal Antitrust Litig., 527 F.3d 517, 530 (6th Cir. 2008), that is not
the case here. Dr. Conrad’s 1994 study is a published work considered by multiple courts
This is not to say that all of Conrad and Allen’s statements about their experience satisfy the reliability standard
articulated in Wilson. For example, the following statement by Dr. Allen is more vague: “[I]n terms of my own
experience, it simply became a part of my preparation carrying forward, that is experience I’ve had visiting different
campuses, assessing programs, both in the US and internationally, and just the cumulative research and expert
experience I’ve had over my career.” (1/18 17 AM Trial Tr. at 81 (Allen). On the whole, however, Conrad and
Allen’s explanations meet the required threshold. See Wilson, 484 F.3d at 274 (quoting Fed. R. Evid. 702 advisory
deciding higher education desegregation cases, see Cooper, 259 F.3d at 199 (citing Daubert, 509
U.S. at 592-94) (citing “publication” and “general acceptance within a relevant scientific
community” as factors that bear on reliability), and the 2016 enrollment study is a piece of
rigorous quantitative analysis that defendants replicated and critiqued as part of their case, see id.
(listing “whether a theory or technique can be or has been tested” as a factor). “Vigorous crossexamination, presentation of contrary evidence, and careful instruction on the burden of proof
are the traditional and appropriate means of attacking shaky but admissible evidence.” Daubert,
509 U.S. at 596. Because any methodological weaknesses present here go to weight, rather than
admissibility—and because, at the remedies hearing, defendants had the opportunity to test
Conrad and Allen’s opinions through the adversarial process—there is no basis for exclusion
under Rule 702.9 See Karlo v. Pittsburgh Glass Works, LLC, 849 F.3d 61, 81-85 (3d Cir. 2017)
(reversing exclusion of expert testimony where district court “erred by applying a ‘merits
standard of correctness,’ a higher bar than what Rule 702 demands”).
Further, although the word of an expert is not enough to establish reliability, Kumho Tire,
526 U.S. at 157, an expert’s background may bear on the Daubert analysis, particularly when the
nature of the subject matter “preclude[s] ideal experimental conditions and controls.”
Simmons, 470 F.3d at 1123 (“In such instances, other indicia of reliability are considered under
Daubert, including professional experience, education, training, and observations.”). The task
here—developing a promising remedial theory under circumstances with no historical or
contemporary counterpart—is clearly one that “preclude[s] ideal experimental conditions and
As such, it is appropriate to consider Conrad and Allen’s extensive
Because plaintiffs have demonstrated a sufficiently reliable basis for Conrad and Allen’s opinions without showing
that Dr. Conrad’s 1994 study was replicated, the court need not consider whether the dissertation of Brandon
Daniels, (PRX 311), constitutes such a replication. See Ruffin v. Shaw Industries, Inc., 149 F.3d 294, 297-99 (4th
Cir. 1998) (excluding scientist’s test results as unreliable where, among other things, plaintiffs could not show that
her methodology had been independently replicated).
qualifications and experience in the field of higher education desegregation. See Cooper, 259
F.3d at 199 (citing Kumho Tire, 526 U.S. at 150, 152) (court has broad discretion in determining
not just whether proposed expert testimony is reliable, but how to determine reliability).
As noted, Dr. Allen has worked as an academic, consultant, and expert witness on higher
education desegregation issues since 1976. (See Final Expert Report, PRX 312, Ex. 2). His
research involves a “broad consideration of social inequality, with a particular focus on
education and educational inequalities with respect to race, socioeconomic status, and gender.”
(1/18/17 AM Trial Tr. at 74 (Allen)). Recently, he has focused on racial desegregation, higher
education, and student choice. (Id.). Dr. Allen has served as an expert witness in numerous
higher education desegregation cases, including United States v. Fordice, 505 U.S. 717 (1992);
Ayers v. Fordice, 111 F.3d 1183 (5th Cir. 1997); United States v. Alabama, 828 F.2d 1532 (11th
Cir. 1987); Knight v. Alabama, 787 F. Supp. 1030 (N.D. Ala. 1991); and Geier v. Sundquist, 801
F.2d 799 (6th Cir. 1986); as well as the affirmative-action cases Grutter v. Bollinger, 539 U.S.
306 (2003), and Gratz v. Bollinger, 539 U.S. 244 (2003). (Final Expert Report, PRX 312, ¶ 10).
During the 2012 liability trial, Dr. Allen was qualified as an expert and testified without
objection in the areas of program uniqueness, unnecessary program duplication, sound
educational justification, student choice, and remedies. (1/18/12 AM Trial Tr. at 37-38 (Allen)).
The court cited to his trial testimony in its 2013 liability opinion.
Dr. Conrad has worked as an academic, consultant, and expert witness on higher
education desegregation issues since 1980.
(Final Expert Report, PRX 312 ¶ 2). He has
published extensively on academic programming and unitary and dual systems of higher
education in former de jure states, (1/10/12 AM Trial Tr. at 7-8 (Conrad)), and he testified as an
expert witness in Fordice and Knight, among other cases. (Final Expert Report, PRX 312 ¶ 6).
Dr. Conrad has served as a consultant to both OCR and Maryland on higher education issues.
(1/10/12 AM Trial Tr. at 8-10 (Conrad)). Like Dr. Allen, he was qualified as an expert without
objection in the 2012 trial, and he testified regarding programs, program approvals, program
duplication, and the potential for unique programs to create other-race enrollment. (1/10/12 AM
Trial Tr. at 10-11 (Conrad)). The court cited to his expert reports and trial testimony in its 2013
Given the nature of the subject matter, the court concludes that Conrad and Allen’s
professional experience, education, training, and observations constitute an additional factor in
favor of their reliability.
In fulfilling its gatekeeping obligations, a court determines only whether the underlying
methodology is valid, not whether the expert’s conclusions are correct. TFWS, Inc. v. Schaefer,
325 F.3d 234, 240 (4th Cir. 2003). Conrad and Allen’s opinions satisfy this test. In developing
their remedial proposal, Conrad and Allen reviewed facts and data from a wide range of sources.
They analyzed those facts and data using principles and methods generally accepted in the
relevant fields, including social science, higher education desegregation, and quantitative and
qualitative analysis. And they otherwise drew on “specialized knowledge” gained through their
professional experience, education, and training. See Fed. R. Evid. 702(a).
For these reasons, the court will admit the challenged expert report and testimony.
The defendants also challenged the propriety of injunctive relief as a remedy in this case.
In its Proposed Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law, however, the State asserted, for the
first time, that the plaintiffs must meet the traditional four-factor test for permanent injunctive
relief before the court can impose a remedy. To support its argument, the State relies on eBay,
Inc. v. MercExchange, LLC, 547 U.S. 388 (2006) in which the Supreme Court held the
traditional four-factor test applied to disputes arising under the Patent Act. Under the traditional
four-factor test, to obtain a permanent injunction a plaintiff must demonstrate:
(1) that it has suffered an irreparable injury; (2) that remedies available at law, such as
monetary damages, are inadequate to compensate for that injury; (3) that, considering the
balance of hardships between the plaintiff and defendant, a remedy in equity is
warranted; and (4) that the public interest would not be disserved by a permanent
eBay, 547 U.S. at 391. The State cannot offer any examples of application of this permanent
injunction standard to a Fordice analysis in desegregation litigation.
In the wake of eBay, the Fourth Circuit has applied the four-factor test to a preliminary
injunction in a copyright case, Bethesda Softworks, LLC v. Interplay Entm’t Grp., 452 Fed.
App’x 351, 355 (4th Cir. 2011), a permanent injunction under the Due Process Clause, A
Helping Hand, LLC v. Baltimore Cty., MD, 355 Fed. App’x 773, 776 (4th Cir. 2009), and a
permanent injunction under the First Amendment, Legend Night Club v. Miller, 637 F.3d 291,
302–03 (4th Cir. 2011). Courts have interpreted eBay to prohibit “mechanical rules mandating
injunctive relief” in any context. Intertape Polymer Corp. v. N.L.R.B., 801 F.3d 224, 247 (4th
Cir. 2015); see also, e.g., Salinger v. Colting, 607 F.3d 68, 77–78 (2d Cir. 2010) (“[N]othing in
the text or logic of eBay suggests that its rule is limited to patent cases. On the contrary, eBay
strongly indicates that the traditional principles of equity it employed are the presumptive
standard for injunctions in any context.”).
While courts ordering remedies under a Fordice analysis have done so without discussing
the test for granting a permanent injunction, there is no doubt that, even under the traditional
four-factor analysis, injunctive relief is appropriate here.
First, this court already found that the traceable de jure era policy of unnecessary
program duplication “continues to exacerbate the racial identifiability of Maryland’s HBIs,” thus
causing irreparable injury to their students. (Oct. 7, 2013 Mem. at 59, ECF. No. 382).
“Irreparable injury comes from the maintenance of segregative policies which are educationally
unsound . . . not from the dismantling of those policies.” U.S. v. State of La., 815 F. Supp. 947,
955 (E.D. La. 1993). Second, monetary damages are inadequate, because “a State does not
discharge its constitutional obligations until it eradicates policies and practices traceable to its
prior de jure system that continue to foster segregation.” Fordice, 505 U.S. at 728. Third, the
Fordice analysis already incorporates a balance of hardships inquiry with the “practicable and
educationally sound” test. Given those parameters for any remedial order, the injury to plaintiffs
outweighs any burden imposed by an injunction. Fourth, “upholding constitutional rights is in
the public interest.” Legend Night Club, 637 F.3d at 303.
Given this court’s prior findings of liability under Fordice, and considering the fourfactor test for a permanent injunction emphasized in eBay, remedial action will be ordered to
address unnecessary program duplication in Maryland’s higher education system.
IV. PROPOSED REMEDIES
Before stating its ruling on remedies, the court will provide a brief overview of the
competing remedial proposals offered by the defendants and the plaintiffs, and will explore ways
in which the plaintiffs’ proposal reflects the contents of separate remedial proposals submitted by
the four HBIs. The court will summarize testimony from university presidents and other
witnesses with respect to key aspects of the plaintiffs’ proposal, particularly the proposed
transfer of academic programs from TWIs to HBIs. The court also will summarize testimony
related to issues raised by the plaintiffs’ proposal, including its cost, potential complications
related to accreditation, and the plaintiffs’ proposed revisions to the State’s academic program
The State’s Remedial Proposals
The State’s initial remedial proposal, submitted on November 20, 2015, consisted of two
elements. First, the State proposed the creation of a Fund for Collaborative Academic Programs
(“FCAP”), a six-year initiative to support the development of new, collaborative programs
between HBIs and TWIs. The State suggested FCAP might distribute $10,000,000 in grants.
(Defs.’ First Remedial Proposal at 3–7, ECF No. 447). Second, it proposed the establishment of
four summer academies for high school students, one at each HBI. The academies would be
supported by State expenditures between $500,000 and $1,000,000 per institution per year,
during a proposed four-year period. (Id. at 7–10). On February 2, 2016, the court concluded this
proposal was “neither adequate nor sufficiently specific,” although it noted that “collaborative
programs are indeed helpful in certain circumstances.” (Mem. and Order at 2, ECF No. 460).10
On April 24, 2017—after the remedies trial had concluded—the State submitted a second
remedial proposal. (Defs.’ Second Remedial Proposal, ECF No. 621). Under the second
proposal, which superseded the first, the State would provide $50 million in funding over a fiveyear period, divided evenly among Morgan, Bowie, and Coppin. (Id. at 3).11 Each of these three
HBIs could use its portion of the funding for some or all of four purposes: enrollment
management, student aid, campus inclusion initiatives, and summer academies. (Id. at 5).
According to the defendants, these uses “were supported by trial testimony” and, overall, this
flexible approach is “consistent with the HBI presidents’ preferences as expressed at trial” and
would “avoid the risks of Plaintiffs’ program-based approach.” (Id.). “The proposal is intended
At the remedies trial, all four HBI presidents testified that the first State proposal was inadequate. (1/9/17 PM
Trial Tr. at 46 (Wilson); 1/10/17 PM Trial Tr. at 4 (Bell); 1/11/17 AM Trial Tr. at 14–16 (Burnim); 1/11/17 PM
Trial Tr. at 65–70 (Thompson); PRX 1). Because the court has found the initial proposal to be inadequate, and
because the State revised its proposal after the remedies trial, the court need not provide a detailed account of the
criticisms discussed during the remedies trial.
The State has taken the position that UMES is not entitled to relief.
to be sufficiently flexible and self-executing that no further judicial oversight would be
required,” according to the State. (Id.). No funding for new programs was included. (See
generally, Apr. 24, 2017 Status Report, ECF No. 621).
The Plaintiffs’ Remedial Proposals
The plaintiffs submitted an original remedial proposal in May 2015. (Pls.’ First Remedial
Proposal, ECF No. 406). At trial, however, testimony focused on the plaintiffs’ revised remedial
proposal, which was submitted in 2016 and was the most recent at the time of trial. (PRX 21;
PRX 312). The plaintiffs’ 2016 remedial proposal would employ three strategies to increase
other-race enrollment at HBIs: the creation of “programmatic niches” at each HBI, various
academic “enhancements” at each HBI, and a reformed State process for approving new
academic programs. These strategies will be briefly discussed in turn.
The plaintiffs’ proposal centers on the first strategy: the creation of two or three
“programmatic niches” at each of the four HBIs. These “programmatic niches” are clusters of
related undergraduate and graduate programs, at least some of which are “unique” and in high
demand among students. (PRX 312 at 50–51; PRX 21 at 1). To create these unique, high demand
programs, plaintiffs generally call for either the creation of new programs at HBIs or the transfer
of programs from TWIs to HBIs.12 In some instances, the plaintiffs propose new collaborations
between HBIs and TWIs. According to the plaintiffs, these niches will help foster distinct
institutional identities (beyond racial identities) at the HBIs, thus attracting other-race students.
(PRX 312 at 50–51; PRX 21 at 1).
In addition to creating unique, high demand programs, the plaintiffs propose various
academic “enhancements,” such as additional funding for capital improvements, technology
In this context, the “transfer” of a program from a TWI to an HBI generally means closure of the program at the
TWI and the transfer of all resources attached to the program to the HBI. (PRX 21 at 2 n.1).
upgrades, scholarships, marketing, and recruitment activities. These funds are meant to support
the programmatic niches by enhancing the quality and capacity of academic programs at HBIs.
(Pls.’ Proposed Findings of Fact at 133-35, ECF No. 622; PRX 312 at 29–30). Second, the
plaintiffs propose reforms to the MHEC approval process for new academic programs. (Pls.’
Proposed Findings of Fact at 135-43, ECF No. 622; PRX 312 at 9, 30–33).
Importantly, neither the plaintiffs’ most recent proposal nor the State’s original proposal
reflects a consensus among key stakeholders. The State’s first remedial proposal was drafted by
State attorneys and two University System of Maryland (“USM”) officials. (PRX 327 at 3;
1/12/17 PM Trial Tr. at 21–24 (Fielder)). That is, neither MHEC, (1/12/17 PM Trial Tr. at 35–36
(Fielder)), nor the current HBI presidents, (1/9/17 PM Trial Tr. at 46) (Wilson); 1/10/17 PM
Trial Tr. at 3 (Bell); 1/11/17 AM Trial Tr. at 16–17 (Burnim); 1/11/17 PM Trial Tr. at 65–66
(Thompson)), were involved in drafting the State’s original proposal. The State also did not
consult with three of the TWI presidents who testified at the remedies trial. (1/30/17 Trial Tr. at
120 (Hrabowski); 2/1/17 Trial Tr. at 53 (Schatzel); 2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 136 (Schmoke)).13 And the
plaintiffs’ experts were not able to consult with HBI presidents when drafting their proposal.
(See 1/11/17 PM Trial Tr. at 93). UB President Kurt Schmoke highlighted this lack of
coordination among key stakeholders and suggested it would be helpful for all sides to discuss
potential remedies. “I would hope, before final decisions are made, if it is possible, that we have
an opportunity to sit with the presidents of the HBIs and the TWIs,” he said. (2/9/17 Trial Tr. at
136 (Schmoke)). “[O]n the programmatic side, and looking at both the quality of programs and
what might attract all students – white, black, whatever – to this program, we might be able to
come up with some ideas that would be – might help resolve some of these issues.” (Id.).
UMUC’s President Miyares testified that he believes the State’s plan was “shared with the presidents” at a
presidents’ council meeting, but that he was “not familiar with the details.” (2/6/17 Trial Tr. at 132-33 (Miyares)).
Below is an overview of the plaintiffs’ proposal. Where relevant, the court also describes
the State’s objections to the plan.
The plaintiffs’ proposal includes creating a variety of new programs at the HBIs. At
Morgan, the plaintiffs propose creating three unique, high demand programs in the areas of
business and management; urban environment, health, and sustainability; and engineering. To do
so, the plaintiffs would both create new programs and transfer programs from TWIs. (PRX 21 at
2–7). At UMES, the plaintiffs propose the creation of three niches in the areas of engineering and
aviation sciences; agriculture and environmental sciences; and pharmacy and health professions.
(Id. at 11–14). The plaintiffs do not propose any program transfers to UMES. At Bowie, the
plaintiffs recommend creating two niches: computer sciences, and professional studies: nursing,
social work, and education. (Id. at 15–16). To create these niches, the plaintiffs propose creating
a variety of new programs and transferring a doctorate program in Information and Interaction
Design from the University of Baltimore. (Id.). At Coppin, the plaintiffs propose two niches: one
in nursing and allied health, and the other in criminal justice and applied social and political
sciences. (Id. at 8–10). For nursing and allied health, the plaintiffs propose no program transfers.
For criminal justice and applied social and political sciences, they propose creating new
programs and transferring programs. (Id.).
The plaintiffs’ remedial proposal with respect to UMUC, which offers classes that are
either exclusively online or a combination of online and on-site instruction, is different. Their
2016 remedial proposal called for transferring all UMUC programs that duplicated HBI
programs to the HBI that offers the duplicated program. (Id. at 17–18). After trial, however, the
plaintiffs revised their proposal with respect to UMUC, in two ways. First, they “do not seek to
transfer the parts of programs where UMUC is working under a DOD contract or engaging in
specialized programming targeted towards members of the military stationed out-of-state or
outside the U.S.” (Pls.’ Proposed Findings of Fact at 121, ECF No. 622). Second, the plaintiffs
clarified that they are no longer proposing the “total transfer” of all duplicative offerings from
UMUC to the HBIs. Their latest proposal suggests that some duplicative programs could be
transferred in a more “limited” way. For instance, the plaintiffs suggest UMUC might continue
to offer the transferred programs to out-of-state students. (Id.). The plaintiffs also propose
transferring three programs from UMUC to Coppin (a bachelor’s in criminal justice, a bachelor’s
in investigative forensics, and a master’s in digital forensics and cyber investigation), and
transferring four programs from UMUC to Morgan (a bachelor’s in accounting, a master’s in
accounting and financial management, a bachelor’s in finance, and a doctorate in community
college policy and administration). (Id. at 131–33). The plaintiffs also suggest any remedy
should include measures to help HBIs expand their capability to offer courses online and to
ensure that new UMUC offerings do not adversely affect HBIs. (Id. at 136–38).
Several TWI presidents noted that creating new programs at the HBIs could benefit
Maryland, at least in theory, by increasing the number of graduates. “We want them to have
these programs too,” UMBC’s President Hrabowski testified. (1/30/17 Trial Tr. at 68–69
(Hrabowski)). “We need more [rather] than less.” (Id.). At the same time, some TWI presidents
worried that, in practice, the plaintiffs’ proposal would harm the TWIs. UB’s President Schmoke
testified that, if new revenue sources are found to fund new HBI academic programs, “then not
only the [HBI] institutions will benefit, but the State will benefit from the graduates of those
programs.” (2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 71–72 (Schmoke)). If funds for higher education remain constant,
however, “then the State would likely take money from other higher education institutions in
order to fund those programs.” (Id.). Similarly, President Miyares testified that adding the new
programs to HBIs will cause TWIs to “suffer,” because “there is [only] so much money that will
go to higher education.” (2/6/17 Trial Tr. at 59 (Miyares)).
Academic Program Transfers
As noted, the plaintiffs propose transferring certain academic programs from TWIs to
HBIs. HBI presidents offered mixed views on whether such transfers are necessary. According to
Morgan’s President Wilson, transfers must be a part of any viable remedy. “So I think it has to
start there, with transferring some of the programs back,” he said. (1/9/17 PM Trial Tr. at 30–31)
(Wilson)). Bowie’s President Burnim, by contrast, testified that program transfers are not an
optimal way to build diversity at higher education institutions. (1/11/17 PM Trial Tr. at 6
TWI presidents criticized the plaintiffs’ proposed program transfers. “[T]he reason that
my colleagues and I are so concerned is that the proposal involves transferring programs,”
UMBC’s President Hrabowski testified. (1/30/17 Trial Tr. at 67 (Hrabowski)). President
Schmoke likened the plaintiffs’ proposed transfers to a “body blow” to his institution and
claimed that, for instance, the proposed transfers could force UB to shutter its business school.
(2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 43–44 (Schmoke)). Similarly, Towson’s President Schatzel called transfers
“an ill-advised solution,” (2/1/17 Trial Tr. at 57 (Schatzel)), while President Miyares estimated
that the plaintiffs’ proposal could cause UMUC enrollment to decline by 10–12 percent, which
“would mean that UMUC would have to dramatically, significantly increase tuition or get relief
from the State in increased State support.” (2/6/17 Trial Tr. at 68 (Miyares)). 14 MHEC Secretary
James Fielder, Jr. also criticized program transfers. “I have a significant problem with the
After the remedial trial concluded, the plaintiffs revised their proposal with respect to UMUC. (See Pls.’ Proposed
Findings of Fact at 120–33, ECF No. 622). Accordingly, it is not clear whether, in President Miyares’s view, these
effects would still flow from the last version of the plaintiffs’ proposal.
transfers,” he testified, “[y]ou really are eliminating and removing an academic program that
typically is successful . . . with the thought that it can simply be implanted somewhere else . . . .
And I do think this would be very disruptive to the institutions.” (1/12/17 PM Trial Tr. at 72
In summary, TWI presidents testified that program transfers would harm TWIs and the
State of Maryland by (1) adversely affecting TWI faculty, students, and institutional reputations,
(2) undermining partnerships and investments between the TWIs and outside institutions; and (3)
hampering Maryland’s goals of meeting workforce needs in science, technology, engineering,
and math (STEM) and nursing. There also were unique reasons raised with respect to
transferring programs from UMUC. These issues will be explored in turn below.
a. Faculty and Students
Several TWI presidents testified that the proposed transfers would harm their institutions’
reputations and hamper efforts to attract and maintain talented faculty members and students.
“If the program is taken from us, it will have a devastating impact on . . . the reputation of
the institution,” UMBC’s President Hrabowski explained. (1/30/17 Trial Tr. at 67–68
(Hrabowski)). Similarly, UB’s President Schmoke testified that “there are high degree[s] of
reputational risks of losing programs.” (2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 72 (Schmoke)).
According to the TWI presidents, the proposed program transfers already have created a
sense of instability that has made it more difficult for TWIs to retain and attract top-flight faculty
members. (1/30/17 Trial Tr. at 39–40, 81 (Hrabowski); 2/1/17 Trial Tr. at 46 (Schatzel); 2/9/17
Trial Tr. at 68 (Schmoke)). President Schmoke, for instance, said the prospect that UB would
lose some criminal justice programs—as proposed by the plaintiffs—has been a “cloud” hanging
over faculty recruitment efforts because “people who are considering UB are concerned about
exactly where these programs will be over the next few years.” (2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 68
(Schmoke)). TWI presidents also claim the uncertainty created by the plaintiffs’ proposed
transfers has made it harder for TWIs to recruit talented students. (2/6/17 Trial Tr. at 166–67
(Miyares); 1/30/17 Trial Tr. at 80–81 (Hrabowski); 2/1/17 Trial Tr. at 46 (Schatzel)).
Some TWI faculty members already have expressed reluctance to move to HBIs
alongside any transferred programs and, if the transfers take place, these faculty members may
seek employment elsewhere, TWI presidents testified. For instance, President Schmoke testified
that faculty members in UB’s Information and Interaction Design doctorate program have
“indicated their strong objection to moving,” while faculty in UB’s criminal justice program
expressed “great concern about moving” and indicated that they may “pursue other options” if
transfers take place. (2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 59–60, 67–68 (Schmoke)). UB faculty members are
concerned that they would not retain the same tenure rights and control over academic programs
if they moved to an HBI, he explained. (Id. at 56–57). Towson’s President Schatzel expected
faculty members “would not transfer,” because they “have the ability . . . to go wherever they
want.” (2/1/17 Trial Tr. at 43–44, 57 (Schatzel)).
TWI presidents also warned that transferring programs to HBIs would have adverse
ripple effects throughout the affected TWIs because the programs are part of the fabric of the
university rather than standalone entities. “[I]t’s not about just transferring a discrete area. They
are all integrated,” UMBC’s President Hrabowski stressed. (1/30/17 Trial Tr. at 75, 94
(Hrabowski)). “Taking away these programs would remove critical expertise, not only to a
department, but to the broad academic enterprise.” (Id.). Similarly, President Schmoke explained
that faculty members who teach in UB’s MBA program—which the plaintiffs propose
transferring—also usually teach in other parts of the business school. (2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 40
(Schmoke)). Towson’s President Schatzel, for her part, explained that an academic program
“can’t be lifted up and moved someplace,” because the program really depends on the faculty,
relationships with employers, and alumni associated with it at the TWI. (2/1/17 Trial Tr. at 43
(Schatzel)). She said transferring an accounting program to an HBI, as the plaintiffs propose,
would have a “great impact” on Towson because accounting “is a core element of a business
education” at Towson. (Id. at 47).
If the proposed program transfers take place, that also would make it harder for TWIs to
attract top students, because students seek out schools that have a broad range of academic
offerings available, UMBC’s President Hrabowski testified. “So when thinking about recruiting
really good students who are not sure, they want options. And we would limit ourselves
dramatically if we did not have those options available.” (1/30/17 Trial Tr. at 76 (Hrabowski)).
While testifying about the ways in which the plaintiffs’ proposal may harm their
institutions, the TWI presidents also made clear that their institutions currently serve diverse
student populations and are committed to diversity. President Schmoke claimed that UB was
“probably the most . . . racially integrated institution of the twelve in the USM system” and
testified that UB’s student population is 46 percent African-American and 43 percent white.
(2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 25–26 (Schmoke)). President Hrabowski testified that UMBC is “seen as one
of the most diverse places in the country” and noted that the student population is slightly less
than 20 percent African-American and slightly less than 50 percent white. (1/30/17 Trial Tr. at
27–29 (Hrabowski)). He also stressed that UMBC wants to further diversify its students and
faculty; concerning the latter, the dean of UMBC’s graduate school is an African-American
woman, he noted. (Id. at 37–43). President Schatzel testified that 20 percent of Towson’s student
population is African-American. She also noted that she recently created a new position – vice
president of inclusion and institutional equity – to help bolster diversity at Towson. (2/1/17 Trial
Tr. at 27–28 (Schatzel)). President Miyares stressed the sheer volume of African-Americans who
receive an education at UMUC. He testified that UMUC enrolls more African-American students
than the four HBIs combined and awards roughly the same number of degrees to AfricanAmerican students each year as do the four HBIs combined. (2/6/17 Trial Tr. at 41–42
(Miyares)).15 He claimed the plaintiffs’ proposal would harm African-American students at the
TWIs. (Id. at 59).
The plaintiffs’ witnesses downplayed some of the concerns voiced by the TWI presidents
about program transfers. For instance, Dr. Lucie Lapovsky questioned the claim that TWI faculty
would not move to HBIs alongside transferred programs. She testified that a variety of factors
may influence whether faculty members ultimately decide to transfer to an HBI. In fact, faculty
“usually will go with where their jobs are going,” because “there are not a plethora of faculty
jobs around these days in many fields.” (1/17/17 PM Trial Tr. at 58 (Lapovsky)). Dr. Earl
Richardson, a former president of Morgan, also testified that transfers are a “viable concept” and
noted that Maryland has embraced transfers in the past in certain situations. (1/17/17 AM Trial
Tr. at 47–49 (Richardson)).
b. Partnerships and Investments
TWI officials also asserted that their institutions have established longstanding
partnerships with business and government entities. They testified that the plaintiffs’ proposal
would undermine those relationships, and the relationships would not transfer to HBIs alongside
transferred academic programs. At Towson, President Schatzel testified, the accounting program
Concerning percentages, President Miyares testified that UMUC is “basically 60 percent non-white.” (2/6/17 Trial
Tr. at 42 (Miyares)). Although he did not elaborate on the definition of “non-white,” President Miyares appears to
include in that category African-American, Asian, and Hispanic students. For instance, evidence submitted by the
plaintiffs suggests that, at least as of the fall of 2014, the total enrollment at UMUC was 47,906 students. Of those
students, 19,344—or roughly 40 percent—were classified as “white.” (See PRX 330 at 14–15).
has longstanding relationships with local firms where Towson alumni are employed, and these
relationships create job opportunities for graduating Towson students. Although the plaintiffs
propose to transfer accounting programs from Towson to Morgan, she testified that these
relationships are not transferable. (2/1/17 Trial Tr. at 50–51 (Schatzel)). Similarly, Greg
Simmons, UMBC vice president for institutional advancement, testified that UMBC has
developed a partnership with NASA through which NASA has hired over one thousand UMBC
graduates. Transferring engineering programs from UMBC, as the plaintiffs propose, would
“change the way we’re able to work with partners and prepare students in a meaningful way,”
he testified. (1/31/17 Trial Tr. at 41 (Simmons)). He also suggested these partnerships are not
transferable. (Id.). Concerning investments, Mr. Simmons testified that UMBC’s relationship
with Northrup Grumman has yielded financial benefits. Last year, for example, Northrop
Grumman gave UMBC $3 million in funding for scholarships. (Id. at 35–36).
c. Maryland’s Workforce Needs in STEM and Nursing
UMBC’s President Hrabowski also testified that transferring academic programs would
hamper Maryland’s efforts to fulfill unmet workforce needs in areas like STEM and nursing.
“This state needs tens of thousands of more people educated in these areas, whether it’s
computer engineering, computer science, and computing broadly,” he explained. (1/30/17 Trial
Tr. at 68 (Hrabowski)). “Taking away our program would mean reducing the numbers of people
who are being educated in our state for these jobs.” (Id.).
d. UMUC Issues
The testimony also highlighted several issues specific to the plaintiffs’ proposal regarding
UMUC, an institution which offers fully online and “hybrid” classes. HBI presidents made clear
that they wanted to expand online course offerings. According to President Wilson, failure to
expand online would place Morgan “in serious jeopardy of not being competitive [with] other
institutions.” (1/10/17 AM Trial Tr. at 29 (Wilson)). Similarly, President Bell testified that
UMES wanted to move some of its unique programs online. (1/10/17 PM Trial Tr. at 67–68
(Bell)). HBIs have expanded their online presence in recent years. (2/6/17 Trial Tr. at 124–25
In his testimony, President Miyares argued against transferring programs from UMUC to
other Maryland institutions. He claimed transferring online classes would do little to desegregate
HBI campuses because students taking classes online do not know the race of their fellow
students. (Id. at 53). He also claimed there is little to “transfer” in the case of UMUC online
classes. For instance, there are no full-time faculty assigned to programs, and he doubted that
students would transfer from UMUC to the HBIs. (Id. at 61, 66). More broadly, President
Miyares questioned whether the plaintiffs’ remedial approach is sound with respect to UMUC.
While the plaintiffs considered geographic proximity when examining if program duplication
exists, President Miyares claimed geographic proximity is less relevant in the age of online
education. (Id. at 50). 16 In addition, he suggested that UMUC serves a different student
population than the HBIs: unlike “most traditional institutions” in Maryland, UMUC does not
target 18-year-olds but rather focuses on working adults. (Id. at 50–51).17 For that reason, he
claimed UMUC does not compete with other Maryland institutions. (Id. at 51).
At the same time, President Miyares also explained that UMUC offers “hybrid” classes as well as classes that are
entirely online. For these “hybrid” classes, UMUC uses classrooms at a variety of locations, including University of
Maryland College Park (UMCP), Anne Arundel Community College, and Cecil Community College. (Id. at 121).
As President Miyares acknowledged, however, UMUC is not unique in terms of recruiting working adults. For
instance, he acknowledged that the average student age at Coppin is 30 years old and that 75 percent of Coppin’s
student population had children or other dependents in their home. (Id. at 101–02). He also acknowledged that UB
serves an older student population. (Id. at 102; see also 2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 19–20 (Schmoke) (explaining that the
average age of UB undergraduate students is 28 and that UB focuses primarily on students who transfer from
community college, military veterans, and second-career individuals, not students recently graduated from high
President Miyares also stressed that UMUC’s business model and mission differ from
that of the HBIs. UMUC, which was never segregated, provides low-cost education (including
free course materials) primarily to working adults through fully online and hybrid classes that are
offered in eight-week terms. (Id. at 10–13, 29–32). It is an “open” university; it readily accepts
credits from other institutions and will enroll as an undergraduate any student who has graduated
high school and any student who has a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited university.
(Id. at 15–19). In light of its focus on online instruction and global presence, UMUC has invested
in call centers to support students around the globe. (Id. at 20–21). It has no tenure system and no
research mission; adjunct faculty members teach most classes, and those classes are
standardized, meaning the faculty who teach them do not design them. (Id. at 22, 37). One-third
of UMUC students are “in state.” (Id. at 40).
Although UMUC has collaborated with other universities, President Miyares testified that
such collaborations are only beneficial for academic programs that UMUC does not already
offer. (Id. at 78, 86–87). For instance, UMUC and Salisbury teamed up to offer a social work
degree, because UMUC did not offer that degree. In that partnership, social work students were
subjected to Salisbury admissions standards, studied a curriculum developed by Salisbury, and
were awarded a Salisbury degree. UMUC administered the program and paid the faculty, and the
two institutions split revenue. President Miyares testified that students also had access to UMUC
services, such as call centers and online libraries. (Id. at 71–74, 142). If UMUC already offers a
program, by contrast, collaboration would yield a loss for UMUC because any gains in
enrollment due to the collaboration would not be significant enough to offset the split in
revenues. (Id. at 86–87).
Miyares testified that other Maryland institutions are increasingly competing with UMUC
for non-traditional students in both the fully online and hybrid formats. (Id. at 107).
MHEC Program Approval Process
The plaintiffs also propose revising the MHEC academic program approval process, 18
which they claim is necessary to address program duplication between TWIs and HBIs.
The current approval process is governed by the Code of Maryland Regulations
(“COMAR”). These regulations were last amended in 2012. According to Monica Wheatley,
MHEC Associate Director of Collegiate Affairs, the 2012 amendments “give a more robust look
at program duplication.” (2/7/17 Trial Tr. at 163–64 (Wheatley); see PRX 28 (amended
Under the current standard, MHEC is tasked with determining, among other things,
whether a proposed academic program is “unreasonably duplicative.” (PRX 28 at 16 (COMAR
13B.02.03.09(C)(1)). When doing so, MHEC considers the program’s market demand.
Accordingly, MHEC may approve a proposed program—even if it duplicates a program at
another institution—if there is “a need in the state for that type of duplication.” Such a need
could be demonstrated in several ways: “It could be a capacity issue at any of the institutions that
have current programs; it could be based on extreme market need for a particular program,” she
explained. (2/7/17 Trial Tr. at 81 (Wheatley)).
Before offering a new academic program, Maryland institutions must secure approval from MHEC. In order to
receive approval, Maryland institutions first submit a proposal to MHEC. After receiving a proposal, MHEC
contacts other institutions, including the HBIs, in order to inform them of the proposal and provide them an
opportunity to lodge a protest. MHEC also reviews the proposed program to determine, among other things, if it
would lead to program duplication. (1/12/17 PM Trial Tr. at 11–13 (Fielder)). The MHEC recommendation is
ultimately submitted to the MHEC Secretary, who determines whether the program will be approved or denied.
(2/7/17 Trial Tr. at 72–73 (Wheatley)). MHEC officials indicated that MHEC is focused on preventing unreasonable
duplication caused by new programs but is not focused on eliminating preexisting duplication. Ms. Wheatley, for
instance, testified that she was unaware of any MHEC efforts to evaluate whether existing programs are duplicative.
(2/8/17 Trial Tr. at 14 (Wheatley); see also 1/12/17 PM Trial Tr. at 50 (Fielder)).
Ms. Wheatley said, however, she has not examined whether programs that were approved under the pre-2012
regulations would not have been approved under the current regulations, because all of her work at MHEC has
occurred after the regulations were amended. (2/7/17 Trial Tr. at 164–66 (Wheatley)).
Instead of the current standard of “unreasonable” program duplication, the plaintiffs
claim MHEC should use an “unnecessary” program duplication standard. (Pls.’ Proposed
Findings of Fact at 138, ECF No. 622). Their alternative standard would preclude MHEC from
approving a duplicative program simply based on market need without considering lesssegregative alternatives, according to Dr. Allen. (1/18/17 PM Trial Tr. at 24–25 (Allen)). Ms.
Wheatley, by contrast, saw little practical difference between the two standards: “I would
consider those the same concept,” she testified. (2/7/17 Trial Tr. at 81 (Wheatley)). And,
regardless of the precise formulation, she claimed MHEC should retain flexibility to approve
duplicative programs if there is significant market demand for graduates in that area: “[I]f we
couldn’t look at the need for a particular program in the market, then we are potentially not
preparing as many students as we need to. And that could have a number of different
consequences, including students leaving the state, areas in our workforce that aren’t being
developed as quickly, putting us at a competitive disadvantage as a state.” (Id. at 82).
As part of its duplication analysis, MHEC also considers a list of factors, including any
“[e]ducational justification for the dual operation of programs broadly similar to unique or highdemand programs at HBIs.” (PRX 28 at 16 (COMAR 13B.02.03.09(C)(2)(g)). Asked about the
meaning of this factor, Ms. Wheatley explained that MHEC officials “don’t want to make a
program decision that’s going to undermine the specific institutional identity of an HBI or the
uniqueness and focus of the institution.” (2/8/17 Trial Tr. at 6 (Wheatley)). She clarified,
however, that MHEC may approve a program proposed by a TWI—even if that program is
broadly similar to a unique or high-demand program at an HBI—in some situations, such as
when the two programs do not serve the same type of students. (Id. at 12–13). She could not
recall any instances where MHEC recommended disapproval of a program proposed by a TWI
because it was broadly similar to a unique or high-demand program at an HBI. (Id. at 13).
According to Ms. Wheatley, MHEC considers the issue of duplication when reviewing
proposals, even absent objections from HBIs or other institutions that could be adversely
affected. “[T]here have been instances where there have been no levied objections, but we have
either denied or questioned a proposing institution . . . on the basis of duplication” she testified.
(2/7/17 Trial Tr. at 79 (Wheatley)).20
In addition to changing the standard for duplication, the plaintiffs also propose that the
State only approve programs if they are proven not to infringe on any HBI’s programs and that
prior to approving any programs, “the State must consider whether it would be less-segregative,
educationally sound, and practicable to place the program at an HBI.” (Pls.’ Proposed Findings
of Fact at 182, ECF No. 622). According to the plaintiffs, the State also must adopt a system “to
proactively identify degrees for future development” at HBIs. (Id.). Finally, the plaintiffs claim
the State must prevent TWI expansion into areas where HBIs already have programs, and they
suggest a monitoring committee that would provide input to MHEC on program approval
Several witnesses testified that the current MHEC program approval process is adequate.
Bowie’s President Burnim testified that the 2012 amended MHEC approval process is generally
working as it should. (1/11/17 AM Trial Tr. at 72 (Burnim)). Dr. Houston Davis, who formerly
served as the executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer of the University System of
Both Dr. Fielder and Ms. Wheatley testified that Maryland’s participation in the State Authorization Reciprocity
Agreement (SARA) will make it harder for MHEC to guard against unreasonable online program duplication
moving forward. Under SARA, Maryland must permit a university in another state that has joined SARA to offer
online programs in Maryland if the university has been approved by SARA and the program has been approved by
the other state. In that circumstance, MHEC has no ability to review online programs offered in Maryland by out-ofstate universities for duplication. (1/12/17 PM Trial Tr. at 65–69 (Fielder)).
Georgia, also generally supported the current MHEC approval process. According to Dr. Davis,
“the process that MHEC has out there is sound. It’s a good process.” (10/28/16 Dep. Tr. at 89,
ECF No. 616-1; 12/9/16 Dep. Tr. at 270-71, ECF No. 616-2 (Davis)). 21 Further, President
Burnim testified that, since 2012, MHEC has not approved programs over objections from
Bowie, and President Thompson testified that she was unaware of any time when MHEC
approved a program over an objection from Coppin. (1/11/17 AM Trial Tr. at 69-70 (Burnim);
1/12/17 AM Trial Tr. at 8 (Thompson)).22
Effectiveness of the Plaintiffs’ Proposed Remedy
TWI and HBI presidents largely agreed that academic program offerings—especially
unique, high-demand program offerings—can play some role in attracting students to a particular
university. But the presidents offered different views on the relative importance of academic
programs in attracting students and whether unique, high-demand programs would help HBIs
attract other-race students.
TWI presidents testified that academic programs play a role in recruiting a diverse
student body. According to UMBC’s President Hrabowski, academic programs are an
“important” component of creating a diverse student body, although “[i]t would be simplistic to
say it’s simply about programs . . . . The fact is that we are talking about the programs; the
strategies one uses to market; the strategies to build relationships with schools, with families,
with communities; and the strong ways one can use alumni to show what’s possible to families,
all those factors.” (1/30/17 Trial Tr. at 123–24, 132 (Hrabowski)). President Schmoke testified
that academic programs are a “major focus” of UB recruitment efforts because “if you are going
After the remedies trial had concluded, the parties agreed that portions of this deposition transcript would be
admitted into evidence. (See ECF No. 616).
The joint UB/Towson MBA program was approved over Morgan’s objections in 2005. (Oct.7, 2013 Mem. at 51,
ECF No. 382) This program was terminated in 2015. (2/1/17 Trial Tr. at 58, 71-72 (Schatzel)).
to attract people—diverse groups, it’s probably going to be based around programs.” (2/9/17
Trial Tr. at 131 (Schmoke)). He said “unique” programs in particular help drive enrollment, and
that “clustering” related programs together and offering related programs across degree levels
may further entice students to enroll. (Id. at 104, 111, 120).23 Although Towson highlights its
academic offerings as part of its recruitment efforts, President Schatzel testified that a
university’s overall academic reputation—as opposed to specific program offerings—drives
student interest. (2/1/17 Trial Tr. at 35–36, 48, 63 (Schatzel)). She stressed that there are many
reasons why a student may be interested in a certain university and highlighted “marketing
communication strategies” used by Towson to recruit students. (Id. at 29–30, 34–36, 46).
HBI presidents largely endorsed the plaintiffs’ proposed strategy of creating
programmatic niches centered on unique, high-demand programs. In their view, this strategy will
help HBIs diversify their student bodies, although they noted the importance of other strategies
as well. Morgan’s President Wilson, for instance, suggested that desegregating the HBIs could
best be accomplished by “instituting on those campuses unique, high-demand programs that
would not be duplicated by Traditionally White Institutions nearby,” while also noting the
importance of scholarships in attracting other-race students to Morgan. (1/9/17 PM Trial Tr. at
22, 33–34 (Wilson)). Similarly, President Bell testified that academic programs drive enrollment
at UMES. Recognizing that students are also drawn to institutions with top-notch facilities, she
UB’s President Schmoke suggested that it may be easier to attract white students to graduate programs than
undergraduate programs. Drawing on his experiences at Howard University, he concluded that “white students
seemed to be more attracted to the graduate, professional body than to the undergraduate.” (2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 130–
31 (Schmoke)). Experts testifying at the remedies trial agreed with this conclusion. According to Dr. Walter Allen,
one of the plaintiffs’ experts, “Master’s programs are the programs that are proven effective in terms of enrolling
diverse student populations.” (1/18/17 PM Trial Tr. at 79 (Allen)). Similarly, Dr. Allan Lichtman, an expert offered
by the defendants, testified that, generally speaking, graduate programs are associated with higher levels of white
enrollment at the HBIs than undergraduate programs. (2/14/17 Trial Tr. at 20 (Lichtman)). On the other hand,
President Burnim testified that his remedial proposal for Bowie focused on undergraduate programs; he suggested
this was partly because graduate programs are more expensive to implement. (1/11/17 PM Trial Tr. at 13–14
testified she “believe[s] that students attend our institutions because they have interests in
particular programs.” (1/10/17 PM Trial Tr. at 21, 29–30 (Bell)). According to President Bell,
much of the diversity at UMES is attributable to its small number of unique, high-impact
undergraduate and graduate programs. (Id. at 22). Bowie’s President Burnim agreed that
students, when deciding where to enroll, “look first or perhaps most importantly to the degree
programs that are offered.” (1/11/17 AM Trial Tr. at 22 (Burnim)). But he agreed that other
factors also are important, including price, financial aid and scholarships, campus environment,
faculty, location, and marketing. (Id. at 82–83).
Cost of the Plaintiffs’ Remedial Proposal
The cost of the plaintiffs’ remedial proposal also was debated at trial. Two TWI
presidents—UB’s President Schmoke and UMUC’s President Miyares—warned that the
plaintiffs’ proposal may harm TWIs because it would be expensive to implement and may drain
resources away from TWIs. (2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 71 (Schmoke); 2/6/17 Trial Tr. at 59–60
(Miyares)). But the precise cost of the plaintiffs’ proposal was unclear even after weeks of
At the remedies trial, the plaintiffs provided no cost estimate for their 2016 remedial
proposal. They suggested that no estimate was provided because the plaintiffs’ experts had no
opportunity to consult with the HBIs outside of the confidential mediation process. (See 1/11/17
PM Trial Tr. at 93). In Coppin’s case, for example, the plaintiffs explained that, given their lack
of access to Coppin’s administrators, they “were not able to adequately project other resource
needs such as funding for faculty and equipment.” (Pls.’ Proposed Findings of Fact at 85-86,
ECF No. 622 (citation omitted)). Dr. Lapovsky testified that she could not estimate the costs of
the plaintiffs’ proposal because she did not have access to relevant personnel at the TWIs and
HBIs, although she also noted that the plaintiffs did not ask her to undertake a cost analysis.
(1/17/17 PM Trial Tr. at 76–77, 96–99 (Lapovsky)). Dr. Lapovsky also testified that cost
estimates for the plaintiffs’ proposal could “easily” be devised “if you were able to sit down with
all the players.” (Id. at 40).
After the remedies trial concluded, the plaintiffs estimated that the operating costs for the
ten proposed programmatic niches at the four HBIs would be roughly between $230 million and
$650 million. (Pls.’ Proposed Findings of Fact at 164, ECF No. 622). This figure does not
account for capital costs, and it does not account for other program enhancements included in the
plaintiffs’ proposal. (Id.). The plaintiffs arrived at this estimate by extrapolating from cost
estimates submitted by UMES and Morgan. (Id. at 187).24 The plaintiffs also suggested, after
conclusion of the remedies trial, that any remedy should include $50 million over a ten-year
period per HBI in “enhancement funds for marketing and scholarships” and $50 million over ten
years per HBI “to strengthen the support for the academic niches through upgrades in areas such
as equipment, materials, and support for faculty and students.” (Id. at 181). Despite these figures,
the plaintiffs still have not been able to provide an overall, complete cost estimate for their
The State also did not provide a cost estimate for the plaintiffs’ 2016 remedial proposal.
Instead, the State’s expert witness, Dr. Lichtman, provided a “ballpark” estimate of costs for the
plaintiffs’ 2015 remedies proposal, which differed significantly from the plaintiffs’ 2016
proposal. He estimated the plaintiffs’ 2015 proposal would cost $210 million for operating costs
alone in the first year, $915 million over five years, and about $1.9 billion over ten years.
(2/14/17 Trial Tr. at 84–85 (Lichtman)). Lichtman estimated the capital costs for the plaintiffs’
Morgan, Bowie, and UMES all provided some cost estimates as part of their individual remedial proposals;
Coppin did not.
2015 proposal to be $872 million over five years and $1.6 billion over ten years. (Id. at 88-89).
According to Dr. Lichtman, it is unclear whether the plaintiffs’ 2016 proposal would be more or
less costly than the 2015 version he examined. (Id. at 84). Overall, however, he expected any
proposal that results in the addition of roughly 100 new or transferred programs at the HBIs—as
is the case with the plaintiffs’ most recent proposal—would require billions of dollars in
operating costs. (Id. at 85-86). And that does not include other costs that are likely to attend such
Dr. Lichtman estimated the operating costs of the plaintiffs’ proposed new programs by
multiplying the number of students expected to enroll in each new program26 by the average cost
to the State of each student at the HBI where the new program would be created. (2/14/17 Trial
Tr. at 56–64 (Lichtman)). 27 Similarly, Dr. Lichtman estimated the cost of proposed program
transfers by multiplying the current number of students in the program at the transferring TWI by
the average per-FTE student cost to the State at the receiving HBI. (Id. at 73–75). Finally, to
estimate capital costs, Dr. Lichtman examined current HBI requests for money for additional
capital projects that are not within the funded commitment of the State. (Id. at 88).
According to Dr. Lapovsky, the cost estimates from Dr. Lichtman are too high. (1/17/17
PM Trial Tr. at 93). She noted that Dr. Lichtman’s student enrollment estimates do not account
for student attrition rates, even though graduation rates at the four HBIs are less than 50 percent.
For instance, President Schmoke testified that the so-called teach-out of UB’s MBA program would cost $7.9
million, and the teach-out of UB’s criminal justice programs would cost $2.6 million. (2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 44-45, 63
(Schmoke)). Teach-outs are required in order to ensure that students enrolled at a TWI in a program slated for
transfer to an HBI may complete that program.
To obtain enrollment estimates, Dr. Lichtman asked USM to ask the HBIs to come up with enrollment projections
for each of the proposed new programs. Three HBIs – Bowie, Coppin, and UMES – then provided such projections
to USM, which passed them along to Dr. Lichtman. Morgan did not provide any projections. For that reason, Dr.
Lichtman averaged the enrollment projections from the other three HBIs in order to estimate enrollment for new
programs at Morgan. (2/14/17 Trial Tr. at 58 (Lichtman)).
Specifically, Dr. Lichtman used the annual State operating appropriation per full-time equivalent student, or the
per-FTE student cost, for the four HBIs. (Id. at 63).
(Id. at 45). This failure inflates Dr. Lichtman’s operating cost estimates, Dr. Lapovsky testified,
because “if you assume a hundred students start and a hundred students graduate, when in reality
somewhere between 30 and 50 students will graduate, you’ve overestimated the enrollment
throughout the life of that program.” (Id. at 52). Dr. Lapovsky also claimed that Dr. Lichtman’s
use of average per-FTE student costs may lead to an inflated cost estimate, partly because the
HBIs may not be operating at peak capacity. Thus, the HBIs may be able to absorb additional
students without incurring additional costs in areas like administration, student services, or
academic support. (Id. at 44). Dr. Lichtman’s cost estimate also may be too high because he
assumes there will be no reduction in costs at the TWIs from which programs are transferred. (Id.
at 53–54). Dr. Lichtman also may have inflated capital costs. Dr. Lapovsky testified that many of
the facilities included in the HBI “wish lists” of what the HBIs would like to see built or
renovated on their campuses—which formed the basis of Dr. Lichtman’s estimates of capital
costs under the plaintiffs’ proposal—“do not have any relevance” to the academic programs
actually included in the plaintiffs’ proposal. (Id. at 48–49).
Dr. Lichtman responded to many of these criticisms in his direct testimony. He agreed
there may be some attrition, which would decrease enrollment, but he also suggested that other
factors might push up enrollment numbers. (2/14/17 Trial Tr. at 61–62 (Lichtman)). He testified
that it is possible that using the per-FTE average student costs resulted in cost estimates that were
too high, but their use is still “a very reasonable way of getting a ballpark estimate.” (Id. at 64–
65). Further, Dr. Lichtman conceded that he did not account for cost savings resulting from
program transfers in his analysis, but he said it was unclear “to what extent related programs are
going to fill in for these lost students” at the TWIs. (Id. at 77). Finally, Dr. Lichtman testified
that he advanced a conservative estimate of capital costs in light of the large numbers of new
programs being proposed by the plaintiffs, but he conceded that he did not know whether the true
capital costs were higher or lower than what he estimated. (Id. at 88-89).
Impact of the Plaintiffs’ Proposal on Institutional Accreditation
The parties also disputed whether the plaintiffs’ proposal could threaten the institutional
accreditation of TWIs and HBIs. Dr. Sylvia Manning—the former president of the Higher
Learning Commission of the North Central Association, which is one of six regional
accreditors—testified that the plaintiffs’ proposal could cause both the TWIs and the HBIs to
come under review by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (“MSCHE”), the
regional accrediting body for Maryland higher education institutions. (2/8/17 Trial Tr. at 131–32
(Manning)). Dr. Manning argued that the changes proposed by the plaintiffs—including
shuttering programs at TWIs and starting new programs at HBIs—are significant enough that
MSCHE would have to review the affected institution.
If MSCHE determines that a proposed institutional change is “substantive,” it reviews the
proposed change, typically before it is implemented. (Id. at 50–51). If MSCHE does not approve
the change, the higher education institution cannot implement the proposed change unless it
offers it outside the umbrella of institutional accreditation. (Id. at 64). There are three levels of
review: substantive change; complex substantive change; and a comprehensive review. A
substantive change review, the least rigorous, may be triggered if the institution proposes a
significant departure from its existing curriculum or if proposed new programs would result in
rapid growth in enrollment. This review may take five or six months. (Id. at 53–54; 79, 184). If
MSCHE determines the proposed change is a “complex substantive change,” MSCHE may
employ external resources and undertake a “deeper level” of examination. (Id. at 51). A
comprehensive review, the most rigorous review, examines the entire institution and can take
years to complete. (Id. at 59).
If the plaintiffs’ proposal were enacted, Dr. Manning expects the four HBIs would come
under some level of scrutiny by MSCHE in light of the volume of programs that the plaintiffs
propose to create or transfer to those HBIs. At the very least, substantive change approval by
MSCHE would be required. (Id. at 56). She testified that the TWIs also might come under
review because enrollment decline caused by proposed program transfers could raise concerns
about overall resources at the TWIs. (Id. at 71, 124). Dr. Manning expressed no opinion on the
outcomes of these expected reviews. (Id. at 168–69).
The HBIs’ Remedial Proposals
The four HBIs also crafted remedial proposals with respect to their own institutions.
Generally, the HBI proposals were devised in consultation with HBI faculty and other university
officials. The Morgan proposal was the product of a months-long process in which faculty
members and other university officials examined the court’s 2013 liability ruling and sought to
determine how to prevent program duplication through the creation of academic niches. (1/9/17
PM Trial Tr. at 27–29) (Wilson)). Similarly, the UMES proposal was adapted from an original
10-year plan that UMES had developed prior to the liability ruling, which was then revised
through input from deans, academic units, shared governance bodies, and faculty representatives.
(1/10/17 PM Trial Tr. at 32–33 (Bell)). The Coppin proposal was crafted by Coppin faculty
members. (1/11/17 PM Trial Tr. at 73 (Thompson)). Bowie submitted two proposals. One
proposal was written by the faculty senate, and the other was written by Bowie’s president,
provost and deans. (Pl’s Proposed Findings of Fact at 80, ECF No. 622).30
The HBIs’ remedial proposals overlap with parts of the plaintiffs’ remedial proposals in
terms of focus, proposed academic programs, or the ways in which the proposals seek to
leverage existing capacity at the HBIs. Some overlaps are briefly discussed below.
The plaintiffs propose creating two niches at Coppin: nursing and allied health, and
criminal justice and applied social and political science. According to President Maria
Thompson, both niches build upon Coppin’s current strengths and would help attract students of
all races. (1/11/17 PM Trial Tr. at 89–91 (Thompson)). She testified that Coppin’s proposal and
the plaintiffs’ proposal are consistent: “I would say the plaintiffs, what the plaintiffs recommend
seems to be contained, more or less, within what the faculty’s document contains.” (Id. at 97).
The plaintiffs’ proposal and Coppin’s proposal both call for the creation of new healthrelated programs. Coppin proposes a new B.S. in Gerontology, a B.S. in Exercise Science and
Physiology, a B.S. in Health Care Administration, a B.S. in Health Education, an M.S. in
Addiction Counseling, and a Master’s in Social Work. (PRX 46 at 8–9). Similarly, the plaintiffs
propose a B.S. in Gerontology, a B.S. in Exercise Science, a B.S. in Healthcare Administration,
and a Master’s in Social Work. (PRX 21 at 8–10). Coppin also proposes a new B.S. in
Cybersecurity, to be housed in the Mathematics and Computer Science department. (PRX 46 at
Unless otherwise noted, the “Bowie proposal” in this memorandum refers to the proposal written by Bowie’s
president, provost, and deans. The Bowie faculty proposal was admitted on September 29, 2017. (See Pls.’ Mot. to
Admit Exs., ECF No. 617; Sept. 29, 2017 Order, ECF No. 640).
27).31 Similarly, the plaintiffs propose creating a B.S. and Master’s in Cybersecurity as part of
the proposed criminal justice niche. (PRX 21).
At Morgan, the plaintiffs propose creating programmatic niches in business and
management; urban environment, health, and sustainability; and engineering. (PRX 21 at 2).
According to President David Wilson, the plaintiffs’ proposal is more aligned with what Morgan
would like to see as a remedy than the State’s proposal. (1/9/17 PM Trial Tr. at 45–46 (Wilson)).
Similar to the plaintiff’s proposed “niche” in business and management, Morgan
proposes an academic “cluster” in the area of “business and entrepreneurship.” The two
proposals also propose creating similar new programs. For instance, Morgan proposes to add
new doctoral programs in marketing, finance, and supply chain management. (PRX 402 at 12–
13). Similarly, the plaintiffs propose the addition of a master’s and doctorate in marketing; a
master’s in finance; and a master’s in supply chain management. (PRX 21 at 3).32
Similar to the plaintiffs’ proposed “niche” in urban environment, Morgan proposes to
create a cluster of programs in urban sustainability, energy, and environment. These two niches
appear to have some program overlap. For instance, the plaintiffs call for a new master’s in
environmental studies and policy and Morgan calls for “[n]ew graduate programs in energy and
sustainable built environment studies, sustainable preservation, built environment informatics,
and sustainable environmental design and policy.” (PRX 402 at 20). Similar to the plaintiffs’
proposed “niche” in engineering, Morgan proposes creating a cluster of programs in engineering,
President Thompson testified that Coppin has a “brand new Science and Technology Center,” an $83 million
building. Coppin needs to “capitalize” on this building, which houses programs in computer science, mathematics,
chemistry, and biology, she explained. (1/11/17 PM Trial Tr. at 79 (Thompson)).
President Wilson testified that Morgan has a new building for its center for business and entrepreneurship that
opened in 2015. (1/10/17 AM Trial Tr. at 67 (Wilson)).
cybersecurity, and big data. (PRX 402 at 10). Both the plaintiffs and Morgan propose to transfer
engineering programs from UMBC to Morgan. (PRX 402 at 25; PRX 21 at 6–7).
The plaintiffs propose creating three programmatic niches at UMES: engineering and
aviation sciences; agriculture and environmental sciences; and pharmacy and health professions.
(PRX 21 at 11–14). Similarly, UMES proposed developing five “niche clusters” in the areas of
agriculture; allied health professions; engineering, aviation and technology; business and
technology; and science and innovation. (PRX 2 at 6). Both proposals appear to build on existing
capacity at UMES. For instance, the plaintiffs propose creating four new undergraduate
engineering programs. (PRX 21 at 12). According to President Juliette Bell, UMES has a “brand
new building” for engineering that houses only one engineering program. “[I]f we had the
resources to develop and expand [so that UMES offered more engineering programs], we believe
we could attract many more students,” she testified. (1/10/17 PM Trial Tr. at 40 (Bell)).
Similarly, the plaintiffs propose creating new programs in the area of pharmacy and health
professions, and construction of a new pharmacy building at UMES is scheduled for 2020 or
2021. (Id. at 43).
The plaintiffs propose the creation of two programmatic niches at Bowie: computer
sciences, and professional studies: nursing, social work, and education. The proposal submitted
by Bowie’s president calls for new undergraduate programs in cybersecurity and information
assurance; data science; and computer systems analysis. (PRX 7 at 4–5). President Mickey
Burnim testified that computer science and computer technology are programmatic strengths at
Bowie. (1/11/17 AM Trial Tr. at 32 (Burnim)). Similarly, the plaintiffs propose, among other
things, creating undergraduate programs in cybersecurity and information assurance, and
information systems/technology. (PRX 21). President Burnim testified, however, that, while
there are some overlaps, he views the two proposals as essentially different. (1/11/17 PM Trial
Tr. at 20 (Burnim)).
The plaintiffs’ proposal also appears to build on new capacity at Bowie. For instance, it
proposes the creation of a doctorate in nursing practice, (PRX 21 at 16), and Bowie anticipates
the completion of a new building, named “The Center for Natural Sciences, Mathematics, and
Nursing,” in 2017, (1/11/17 AM Trial Tr. at 87 (Burnim)).
V. HISTORICAL RECORD
The plaintiffs’ proposal for new unique high-demand programs finds strong support in:
(1) Maryland’s own past support for creating unique, high demand programs at HBIs; and (2)
previous desegregation remedies under the Fordice standard.
Historical Support for Unique, High-Demand Programs
As explained below, there is much historical support, including recommendations
endorsed by the State in the past, for the implementation of unique, high-demand programs at the
HBIs to encourage other-race student enrollment. The court also found from the evidence at the
liability trial that such programs “are a key reason white students attend HBIs in other states,
and, without them, HBIs ‘are identified by their racial history as opposed to [their] programs.’”
(Oct. 7, 2013 Mem. at 46, ECF No. 382 (quoting Conrad Expert Rep. II, PTX 70 at 5)).
As an initial matter, the parties dispute whether historical documents properly may be
considered as part of the remedial analysis. Dr. Bastedo, the State’s methodological expert,
testified that the review of historical documents “can provide context, but it doesn’t provide
justification for [the plaintiffs’] causal claims.” (2/15/17 Trial Tr. at 104 (Bastedo)). Dr. Allen
“emphatically disagree[d]” with this position, on two grounds. First, he noted that historical
factors have been causal in developing and maintaining a racially dual system of higher
education in Maryland. Second, he emphasized that the historical evidence includes “carefully
considered, constructed commission reports by the State . . . [and] reports and studies by federal
entities that used data and that engaged in analyses,” and that understanding those factors is
therefore “central to any efforts to try . . . [to] correct the problems.” (2/21/17 Trial Tr. at 48
The court agrees with the plaintiffs that historical sources are appropriate to consider.
Far from providing mere “context,” (see 2/15/17 Trial Tr. at 104 (Bastedo)), the documents in
the record reflect a longstanding consensus among key players in Maryland higher education,
including the State itself, that establishing unique, high-demand programs at HBIs has a
desegregative effect. Among these documents are the 2000 Partnership Agreement between the
State and the Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights (“OCR”), (PTX 4); the report of
the Cox Task Force, (PTX 22); the 2006 Committee I report, (PTX 8); and a 2005 document
authored by the presidents of the four public HBIs on behalf of the Maryland Legislative Black
Caucus, (PTX 13). These agreements and reports were authored by some of the State’s foremost
education experts, including high-level education officials and university presidents. They are
the product of extensive data collection and analysis, often conducted over a period of years.
And they reflect the conclusions of government commissions, committees, task forces, and
groups of officials, rather than the “beliefs” of their individual authors. (See 2/15/17 Trial Tr. at
75 (Bastedo) (explaining that “people’s beliefs are not a particularly good gauge for actual
causes”). The court therefore will consider these documents, to the extent relevant, as substantive
evidence regarding the remedial potential of unique, high-demand programs.
In the December 2000 Partnership Agreement, the State and OCR “set[ ] forth the
commitments that [they] anticipate will result in agreement that Maryland is in full compliance
with its obligations under federal law, particularly Title VI . . . and the standards set forth in
United States v. Fordice . . .” (OCR Partnership Agreement, PTX 4 at 4). This document
resulted from a collaborative process that included meetings between OCR and State officials,
visits to all of Maryland’s HBIs and some of its TWIs, and the review of “data, documents and
other materials.” (Id. at 23-25). During the process, OCR identified three issues as the focus of
its review. (Id. at 24-25). One of these issues was “[e]nhancing Maryland’s four HBCUs in
order to . . . increase their attractiveness to students of all races, especially white students,
including addressing the problem of unnecessary program duplication among the HBCUs and
geographically proximate TWIs.” (Id. at 24).
Among other commitments laid out in the Partnership Agreement, the State pledged to
avoid unnecessary program duplication and to expand mission, program uniqueness, and
institutional identity at the HBIs. (Id. at 36-39). Toward this end, it committed to “developing
high-demand programs at HBCUs” and to ensuring the successful implementation of “new
unique, high demand and other programs that are approved for HBCUs . . . for the purpose of
promoting their institutional competitiveness and ensuring that these institutions attract students
regardless of race.” (Id. at 36-37). Regarding the role of particular academic programs at the
HBIs, the State described its position as follows:
[T]he State commits to developing high-demand academic programs at HBCUs
and ensuring that they are not unnecessarily duplicated at nearby institutions. For
these purposes, ‘unnecessary program duplication’ refers to those instances in
which broadly similar academic programs (i.e., with respect to overarching
purposes, overall curriculum content, and expectations of program graduates) are
offered in areas other than the core undergraduate liberal arts and sciences at a
TWI and an HBCU that are operated in locations that are geographically
proximate to one another. Maryland will avoid unnecessary program duplication
unless there is sound educational justification for the dual operation of broadly
(Id. at 36).
At the remedies hearing, Dr. Allen testified that the Partnership Agreement was one of
the documents on which he and Dr. Conrad relied, (1/18/17 PM Trial Tr. at 4, 7 (Allen)), and
Conrad and Allen’s expert report states that their recommendations are “consistent with the
remedial strategies relied upon by [OCR]” and that “many . . . mirror the commitments made in
2000 between OCR and Maryland,” (Final Expert Report, PRX 312 ¶ 272).
Reports by various state-funded bodies, issued over several decades, provide additional
evidence of the consensus regarding unique, high-demand programs. One example is the report
of the Cox Task Force, which MCHE created in the 1970s to “propose ways of enhancing the
role and image of predominantly black public colleges in Maryland.” (Cox Task Force Report,
PTX 22 at 2 (capitalization altered)). This report recommended, among other measures, that
“each historically black public college should develop its own specialty areas or programs within
the total state system of higher education that will broaden the appeal of the institution to a more
diverse student body.” (Id. at 20-21 (capitalization altered)). Another is the 2006 Committee I
report, which evaluated the State’s progress in fulfilling the commitments set out in the
Partnership Agreement. (See Committee I Report, PTX 8 at 5). In this report, the committee
concluded that the establishment of unique graduate programs had “enabled Morgan to attract
significant non-black enrollments.” (Committee I Report, PTX 8 at 76-77).
Creating unique, high demand programs at the HBIs also finds support in a 2005 letter
and report authored by the then-presidents of the four public HBIs on behalf of the Maryland
Legislative Black Caucus.33 (Report on the OCR Partnership Agreement (March 28, 2005), PTX
13). This document, drafted prior to the expiration of the Partnership Agreement, assessed the
State’s performance and concluded it was unlikely that it would be able to show sufficient
progress in fulfilling its commitments—among them “expand[ing] HBI missions, mak[ing] them
more visible, and permit[ting] them to offer attractive academic programs without undue
duplication at nearby campuses.” (Id. at 5, 9). The authors explained that duplication of HBI
programs had increased in recent years, partly due to a “lack of State commitment” to leveraging
academic programs for desegregative purposes. (Id. at 9). For example, MHEC had approved
an MBA program at Towson despite declining enrollment in nearby MBA programs, including
Morgan. (Id.). The authors also identified several strategies with the potential to significantly
enhance the HBIs, including “avoiding unnecessary academic program duplication” and
“implementation at HBIs of unique and/or high demand academic programs.” (Id. at 8). They
cautioned, however, that robust program development at the TWIs, including in the years since
the Partnership Agreement, had “substantially narrowed the areas in which HBIs [could] develop
new programs in the future.”
These observations are consistent with much of the
testimony presented by current HBI presidents at the remedies hearing.
The principles endorsed in these documents are consistent with the remedial strategies
employed historically by the Office of Civil Rights in the higher education desegregation
In a 1978 guidance, for example, OCR directed that states in the process of
desegregating should “give priority consideration to placing any new under-graduate, graduate,
or professional degree programs, courses of study, etc., which may be proposed, at traditionally
In a cover letter enclosing the report, President Thelma Thompson of UMES explained that the presidents of the
four public HBIs had prepared that document for submission to MHEC by the Maryland Legislative Black Caucus.
(Report on the OCR Partnership Agreement (March 28, 2005), PTX 13 at 1). She noted that the HBIs themselves
should not be considered to be its authors. (Id.).
black institutions, consistent with their missions.” (Revised Criteria Specifying the Ingredients
of Acceptable Plans to Desegregate State Systems of Public Higher Education, 43 Fed. Reg.
6658, 6661 (Feb, 15, 1978)). In light of OCR’s mission and specialized expertise, this position
provides further support for plaintiffs’ position regarding unique, high-demand programs.
Although the above review is not exhaustive, the court is convinced that the historical
record, together with the opinions of the plaintiffs’ experts and both HBI and TWI presidents
summarized above, provides strong support for the establishment of unique, high-demand
programs at the HBIs.
Previous Remedies Under Fordice Standard
In addition to relying on the historical support for unique, high demand programs within
Maryland, the court also has considered four previous Fordice remedies adopted in Mississippi,
Tennessee, Alabama, and Louisiana, as described below.
Mississippi’s long-running higher education desegregation case, initially filed in 1975,
reached the Supreme Court in 1992. U.S. v. Fordice, 505 U.S. 717 (1992). The Court ruled that
Mississippi needed to reform “policies traceable to the de jure system [that] are still in force and
have discriminatory effects . . . to the extent practicable and consistent with sound educational
practices.” Id. at 729. In 1995, the district court for the Northern District of Mississippi updated
its findings of fact in light of the legal standard articulated in Fordice and entered a remedial
decree. Ayers v. Fordice, 879 F. Supp. 1419 (N.D. Miss. 1995), aff’d, 99 F.3d 1136 (5th Cir.
1996), and aff’d in part, rev’d in part, 111 F.3d 1183 (5th Cir. 1997) (hereinafter “Ayers II”).
The court found that unnecessary program duplication between proximate institutions,
specifically Mississippi Valley State University (MSVU), an HBI, and Delta State University
(DS), a TWI, would be eliminated by the proposed merger of the two institutions. Ayers II, 879
F. Supp. at 1486. The court ultimately concluded, however, that the proposed merger was
“predicated to a large degree on optimistic speculation that a new university, fully integrated and
without any racial identity” would likely result. Id. at 1492. Unwilling to order such a drastic
measure based on mere “optimistic speculation,” the court rejected the merger proposal and
directed the Board [of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning] to explore “what
measures have had success in other systems of higher education” that also had a reasonable
chance of success of desegregating MSVU. Id. If, the court noted, the Board “reaches the same
conclusion that consolidation is the only educationally feasible solution, it shall substantiate that
conclusion to the Monitoring Committee with data necessary for the court to make an informed
decision as to its educational soundness.” Id. The court also found that unnecessary program
duplication at non-proximate institutions, defined as institutions more than fifty miles apart, did
not “significantly foster segregation” and could be managed through the current program
review process. Id. at 1486.
The court’s remedial decree included augmentation of program offerings at two public
HBIs, Jackson State (JSU) and Alcorn State (ASU). Ayers II, 879 F. Supp. at 1485–86. While the
court found that the record did not support the educational soundness of transferring programs to
Jackson State or Alcorn State, it did find that “programmatic enhancements” could realistically
increase other-race enrollment. Id. at 1486. The court, however, analyzed the programmatic
enhancements under “Missions” rather than “Program Duplication.” Id. The remedial decree also
provided special funds of $5 million each, to be delivered by the State, for JSU and ASU for
“continuing educational enhancement and racial diversity, including recruitment of white
students and scholarships for white applicants.” Id. at 1495.
The court initially ordered the creation of a monitoring committee. Ayers II, 879 F.Supp.
at 1494. Consisting of “three disinterested persons with experience in the field of higher
education agreed on by the parties and appointed by the court,” the committee was to be
responsible for reviewing a number of required submissions by defendants and making
recommendations to the court. Id. Although the district court envisioned a three-person
monitoring committee, it eventually appointed a sole monitor. Ayers v. Thomas, 358 F.3d 356,
363 n.6 (5th Cir. 2004). After the parties’ inability to agree on membership for the committee
delayed implementation of the remedial decree, the district court solicited name submissions
from each side and selected the committee from those lists. Id. For reasons not explained in the
record, the court decided to appoint just one monitor: Dr. Jerry Boone, a former state university
administrator. Id. at 363.
Plaintiffs appealed the district court’s ruling on the remedial decree to the Fifth Circuit.
Ayers v. Fordice, 111 F.3d 1183 (5th Cir. 1997). The rejection of the consolidation proposal was
not among the issues appealed, id. at 1192; however, plaintiffs did appeal the enhancement of
HBIs, arguing for more expansive relief than provided by the district court’s remedial decree. Id.
at 1209. “Plaintiffs’ arguments in this regard encompass[ed] four interrelated areas: new
academic programs, land grant programs, program duplication, and funding.” Id. The court
upheld the addition of new academic programs at JSU and ASU, directed the district court on
remand to clarify the status of the proposed merger of MSVU and DS and, if the court found
merger no longer an option, instruct the Board to determine whether new academic programs
could have a desegregative effect at MSVU. Id. at 1215. The court also affirmed the district
court’s rulings on program duplication and directed the Board to report to the Monitoring
Committee on unnecessary program duplication between MSVU and DS if a merger would no
longer be pursued. Id. at 1221.
In proceedings conducted after the 1997 appeal, the district court ruled out consideration
of the merger of MSVU and DS. Ayers v. Thompson, 358 F.3d 356, 362 (5th Cir. 2004).
Consistent with the 1997 Fifth Circuit opinion, the court directed the Board to study programs
that could attract other-race students to MSVU. Id. at 362-363. In 1999, the court ruled that the
state had met most of its obligations regarding new academic programs at JSU. Id. at 363. In
2002, the court approved a final settlement agreement identifying eleven academic programs to
be added or continued at ASU, seventeen at JSU, and eleven at MSVU. Id. at 365, n.13; Ayers v.
Musgrove, No. 4:75CV009–B–D, 2002 WL 91895 (N.D. Miss. Jan. 2, 2002). The settlement
agreement also provided for annual appropriations for the HBIs for seventeen years, totaling
$245,880,000, to fund the academic programs identified. Ayers, 358 F.3d at 366. The settlement
agreement was upheld by the Fifth Circuit in 2004. Id. at 377.
Tennessee’s long-running higher education case, initially filed as a class action suit in
1968, reached its first settlement agreement in 1984. Geier v. Alexander, 593 F. Supp. 1263
(M.D. Tenn.1984), aff’d, 801 F.2d 799 (6th Cir. 1986). Not until 2001, however, was a
settlement reached according to the terms of a consent decree crafted under the legal standard set
forth in United States v. Fordice. See Geier v. Sundquist, 128 F. Supp. 2d. 519, 521 (M.D. Tenn.
2001). The 2001 consent decree was divided into three areas: “(1) issues related to higher
education in Middle Tennessee; (2) statewide issues affecting student enrollment, faculty and
staff hiring, and promotion decisions; and (3) a plan for monitoring and assessing the
effectiveness of [the] Agreement.” Id. at 522.
The decree focused on education in Middle Tennessee, specifically at Tennessee State
University (TSU). TSU, a public HBI located in Nashville, had been a central focus of the
desegregation case since 1968: Rita Sander Geier, the original named plaintiff, was a member of
the faculty there. Sanders v. Ellington, 288 F. Supp. 937, 939 (M.D. Tenn. 1968).34 The decree
mandated that TSU develop and implement a plan to recruit other-race and nontraditional
students to the school, and be provided with at least two recruiters, support staff, and “resources
necessary to recruit other-race students to TSU.” Geier, 128 F. Supp. 2d at 524. The decree also
required the State to: establish a new College of Public Service and Urban Affairs at TSU;
establish a public law school or other high-demand doctoral degree program at TSU; limit for
five years the number of doctoral programs at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) to the
number of such programs at TSU; limit future academic program approval at MTSU to preserve
exclusivity of programming at TSU. Id. at 524–35.
The decree established a court-appointed monitor. Greier, 128 F. Supp. 2d. at 546. The
monitor’s responsibilities were “to facilitate the orderly and timely implementation of [the
settlement agreement] and to mediate points of controversy between the parties.” Id. All
reasonable costs of the monitorship were paid by the State. Id. The monitor, Carlos Gonzales,
was permitted to retain higher education experts to evaluate proposals and was required to report
to the Court and the parties twice a year on the status of the settlement agreement’s
The court also addressed statewide issues. The State was directed to study and assess the
effectiveness of current recruitment programs for other-race students, keeping in mind financial
aid, an open, welcoming campus climate, the utilization of pre-college summer programs, and
TSU remained the primary focus of the legislation for most of its twenty-eight year history. See, e.g., Geier v.
Alexander, 593 F. Supp. 1263, 1266 (M.D. Tenn. 1984) (“The heart of the problem is traditionally black TSU. This
has been recognized by this Court in previous decrees.”).
alternative admission standards. Id. at 541-42. Finally, the court retained jurisdiction over the
case for five years to ensure compliance. Id. at 547. On September 21, 2006, Judge Wiseman
entered a Final Order of Dismissal stating that parties had fully complied with the requirements
of the 2001 Consent Decree and that the State was now operating a unitary system of public
higher education. Geier v. Bredesen, 453 F. Supp. 2d 1017, 1018 (M.D. Tenn. 2006).
The district court, after a six-month bench trial in 1991, concluded that vestiges of
segregation remained in the area of program duplication, among others. Knight v. State of Ala.
787 F. Supp. 1030, 1379 (N.D. Ala. 1991). The court ordered a Consent Decree Monitoring
Committee to examine the issues of program duplication between Alabama State University
(ASU) and Auburn University at Montgomery in the areas of business and education, with a
focus on establishing cooperative programs in those areas of study between the two schools. Id.
at 1380. The court also ordered that ASU and Alabama A & M University be given special
preference for new high-demand programs that the state established in their respective
geographic areas. Id.
The court appointed a monitor, Carlos González, in 1993 to oversee compliance with the
1991 remedial decree. Knight v. State of Ala., 829 F. Supp. 1286, 1288 (N.D. Ala. 1993). The
monitor was directed to personally visit each defendant institution and to meet with
representatives and counsel from all parties to familiarize himself with the organizations under
the decree. Id. at 1289. The monitor was permitted to hire independent experts to assist his work
and was required to report to the court and the parties annually on the status of defendants’
compliance. Id at 1290.
The Supreme Court decided Fordice shortly after the district court’s entry of the remedial
order; thus, the Eleventh Circuit considered the issues on appeal under the newly articulated
Fordice standard. Knight v. State of Ala., 14 F.3d 1534, 1540 (11th Cir. 1994). The district
court’s ruling on program duplication was not among the issues appealed. Id. at 1540.
Louisiana’s higher education desegregation suit began in 1974 when the Attorney
General brought an action on behalf of the United States against the State and the four boards of
higher education existing in Louisiana at the time. See U.S. v. State of La., 692 F. Supp. 642, 645
(E.D. La. 1988). The 1994 Settlement Agreement was the first agreement in the case negotiated
post-Fordice. See Scott B. Arceneaux, Chasing the Dream: Higher Education Desegregation in
Louisiana, 69 Tul. L. Rev. 1281, 1298-1308 (1995).
The 1994 Settlement Agreement addressed program duplication through creation of new
programs at all levels at two public HBIs, Southern University (“Southern”) and Grambling State
University (“Grambling”). Id. at 1305. The State appropriated $34 million to Southern and $14
million to Grambling to fund the new programs and forbade duplication of the new programs at
proximate institutions. Id. at 1305 n.175. The Settlement Agreement also called for the Board of
Regents to work towards ending program duplication at proximate institutions as soon as
possible and mentioned other-race faculty and other-race scholarships for graduate students
among the provisions for meeting the goal of integration. Id. at 1305-06. The implementation of
the Agreement was overseen by a Monitoring Committee responsible for producing annual
reports on its progress. See Alfreda A. Sellers Diamond, Black, White, Brown, Green, and
Fordice: The Flavor of Higher Education in Louisiana and Mississippi, 5 Hastings Race &
Poverty L. J. 57, 114 (2008).
The Agreement expired under its own terms in 2005, after a decade of implementation.
The Monitoring Committee’s tenth and final report gave an overview of progress made on the
Agreement’s initiatives. Id. While the actual enrollment of other-race students at Louisiana HBIs
remained low throughout the decade of implementation, id., the Committee reported that new
program implementation at HBIs resulted in the award of 603 degrees during the ten-year period.
Id. at 116. Additionally, HBIs awarded more than $750,000 in other-race scholarships. Id.
While there is no single uniform solution, these four cases provide additional support for
the creation of new programs at HBIs, rather than transfers and mergers, to help remedy the
segregative effects of program duplication. They also support the appointment of monitors or
special masters to assist in creating and overseeing remedial plans.
The Supreme Court articulated a legal framework in United States v. Fordice, 505 U.S.
717 (1992) for determining whether a state has discharged its duty to dismantle former systems
of de jure segregated higher education. Fordice laid out a three-step process for determining
liability: the court must, first, analyze each state policy or practice to determine whether it is
“traceable” to the prior de jure system of segregation; second, assess whether the challenged
policies have continuing “segregative effects;” and third, evaluate whether the policies have a
“sound educational justification” and cannot be “practicably eliminated.” See id. at 731.
Plaintiffs bear the burden of “show[ing] that a challenged contemporary policy is
traceable to past segregation.” Knight v. State of Ala., 14 F.3d 1534, 1541 (11th Cir. 1994). If
plaintiffs make such a showing, “the burden of proof falls on the State, and not the aggrieved
plaintiffs, to establish that it has dismantled its prior de jure segregated system.” Fordice, 505
U.S. at 739 (emphasis in original). The state can meet this burden either by showing the
challenged policy has “no segregative effects” or by showing that there are “no less segregative
alternatives which are practicable and educationally sound.” Knight, 14 F.3d at 1541. “[T]he
state’s burden of proving that such alternatives are impracticable or educationally unsound is a
heavy one and ‘the circumstances in which a State may maintain a policy or practice traceable to
de jure segregation that has segregative effects are narrow.’” Id. (quoting Fordice, 505 U.S. at
744 (O’Connor, J., concurring)).
“Once liability is found, the offending policies and practices ‘must be reformed to the
extent practicable and consistent with sound educational practices.’” Ayers v. Fordice, 111 F.3d
1183, 1192 (5th Cir. 1997) (quoting Fordice, 505 U.S. at 729). The Fifth Circuit interpreted
Fordice as “recognizing the need to consider the practicability and soundness of educational
practices in determining remedies as well as in making an initial determination of liability.”
Ayers, 111 F.3d at 1192–93 (quoting U.S. v. La., 9 F.3d 1159, 1164 (5th Cir. 1993)). The
Eleventh Circuit interpreted Fordice’s standard for remedies similarly, adding that “because the
obligation to remedy the segregative effects of vestiges of segregation is an affirmative duty
borne by the state, the onus is not on the plaintiffs to propose the remedy options to be
considered.” Knight, 14 F.3d at 1541.
When crafting a remedy, the court “should consider the full range of all possible
alternative remedies.” Id. Proposed remedies do not have to show a guarantee of success in order
to be enacted; rather, the state “is obligated to adopt, from among the full range of practicable
and educationally sound alternatives to the challenged policy, the one that would achieve the
greatest possible reduction in the identified segregative effects.” Id. (citing Fordice, 505 U.S. at
744 (O’Connor, J., concurring)). The state is relieved of its obligation to remedy the segregative
effects “[o]nly where there are no alternative remedies that are practicable and educationally
sound.” Knight, 14 F.3d at 1546 (emphasis added).
The court’s task is to ensure “the State [does] not leave in place policies rooted in its
prior officially segregated system that serve to maintain the racial identifiability of its
universities if those policies can practicably be eliminated without eroding sound education
policies.” U.S. v. Fordice, 505 U.S. 717, 743 (1992). In evaluating sound education policies in
this case, the court must be mindful of potential harm to TWIs, because, unlike earlier Fordice
litigation, Maryland’s TWIs are no longer segregated. Indeed, significant numbers of AfricanAmerican students are educated in integrated settings at TWIs every year. Although the court
agrees that TWI desegregation “does not excuse Maryland’s obligations to desegregate the
HBIs,” (Pls. Resp. to Defs.’ Proposed Findings of Fact at 37, ECF No. 628), the extent of TWI
desegregation is a relevant factor when determining a final remedy. Some indirect harm,
however, from redistributing funding to HBIs may be unavoidable.
Considering the findings at the liability trial, the plaintiffs’ experts’ testimony, the
testimony of HBI and TWI presidents, the historical record, and previous applications of the
Fordice standard, the court concludes that creating new unique, high-demand programs at the
HBIs will achieve the greatest possible reduction in the segregative effects of unnecessary
program duplication in Maryland’s institutions of higher education.
The plaintiffs’ expert proposal to create unique “programmatic niches” at HBIs draws on
guidance from the Office of Civil Rights in the Department of Justice, state-authored reports,
academic research and scholarship, some of the State’s own experts and offices, the testimony of
presidents from both HBIs and TWIs, and previous desegregation efforts in other states. (1/18/17
PM Trial Tr. at 4, 5 (Allen)). Importantly, the plaintiffs’ expert, Dr. Allen, found that leadership
at the HBIs “concurred” with the view that “placing unique, high demand . . . programs on [their]
campuses [was] an essential feature” for creating “a more diverse student body.” (Id. at 10). Dr.
Allen emphasized this last point. He testified that unique high-quality academic programs would
allow the HBIs to attract students of all types by allowing the HBIs to shed their image as
schools only for a particular racial heritage. (Id. at 13). The court is convinced by this testimony.
It is well-supported, considered, and holistic, drawing on multiple perspectives within and
without Maryland and especially attentive to the view of the affected HBIs. It is also bolstered by
robust historical support for the creation of unique, high-demand programs at the HBIs.
As part of its 2000 Partnership Agreement with the Office of Civil Rights, the State
agreed to expand program uniqueness at its HBIs to attract students of all races. Indeed, as early
as 1978, OCR urged states to place new programs in higher educations at HBIs. This view finds
support in the State’s own reports. The Cox Task Force recommended that each HBI in the state
should have its own unique programmatic niche. TWI leadership in this case agree: several
presidents recognized the value in creating new programs at HBIs, specifically noting their
ability to attract students.
Other courts applying the Fordice standard have followed this approach. Attempting to
remedy the vestiges of de jure segregation, a court-ordered remedy in Mississippi included
“programmatic enhancements” to attract a more diverse student body. The same is true for
remedial efforts in Tennessee (requiring the state to create a new high-demand doctoral degree
program at an HBI), Alabama (ordering that HBIs be given preference for new high-demand
programs), and Louisiana (appropriating money for the creation of unique programs at HBIs).
In sum, there is strong and widely-accepted support for the creation of unique, highdemand programs at Maryland HBIs. The court is persuaded by the consensus in the testimony
and record that unique and high-demand academic programs have the potential to attract a more
diverse student body. To be sure, the record does not, nor could it, provide an exact estimate for
the desegregative effects of creating these programs. Much of the State’s opposition to these
remedies rests on numerical analysis suggesting such efforts cannot be completely successful.
But the effects of a proposed remedy need not be precisely computed before a court may adopt it.
Indeed, the complexity of desegregation efforts precludes the accuracy all parties would
otherwise desire. Rather, the court is tasked with adopting “from among the full range of
practicable and educationally sound alternatives . . . the one that would achieve the greatest
possible reduction in the identified segregative effects,” not just the remedy with precisely
proven effects. Knight, 14 F.3d at 1541. By the weight of the evidence, creating unique-high
demand programs at the HBIs meets that standard.
Accordingly, as part of its Order the court will require the creation of unique, highdemand programs at the HBIs. The remedy should draw on the programmatic niches proposed
by the HBIs and consider each HBIs’ areas of strength and the capacity of its facilities. Since this
is a state-wide remedy, UMES will be included in the court’s order. But because UMES has
greater integration than the other HBIs, (See Oct. 7, 2013 Mem. at 20-21, ECF No. 382) (stating
UMES’s student population is 13.3% white and 77.6% black, compared with student populations
that are 1.3% white and 88.2% black at Coppin, 2.8% white and 90.7% black at Morgan, and
4.2% white and 88.4% black at Bowie); see also 1/10/17 PM Trial Tr. at 21-22, 29–30 (Bell)),
and there did not appear to be unnecessary program duplication at the University at the time of
the liability trial, any remedy ordered for UMES must be limited to preserving and reinforcing its
freedom from program duplication and degree of integration already achieved.
As previously discussed, when crafting a remedy, the court “should consider the full
range of all possible alternative remedies.” Knight, 14 F.3d at 1541. To be sure, the “full range of
all possible alternative remedies” includes program transfers. In examining transfers as a
potential remedy, however, courts have been skeptical of, and declined to order, transfers despite
“recommend[ation] by many experts, including court-appointed experts.” Knight v. State of Ala.,
900 F. Supp. 272, 315 (N.D. Ala. 1995). The district court in Knight noted that, “[t]ransfer is an
absolute misnomer” because, in reality, program transfer involves “discontinuing a program at
institution A and starting up a new program at institution B.” Id. The district court in Ayers v.
Fordice held that, despite “find[ing] Dr. Conrad’s effort commendable,” the record did not
support the feasibility and educational soundness of program transfer. 879 F. Supp. 1419, 1484–
85 (N.D. Miss. 1995), aff’d, 99 F.3d 1136 (5th Cir. 1996), and aff’d in part, rev’d in part, 111
F.3d 1183 (5th Cir. 1997).
Here, both sides agree that transferring programs from TWIs to HBIs will be a difficult
process that may negatively impact the affected TWIs. (See 1/24/17 Trial Tr. at 24 (Conrad)
(suggesting that even limited program transfers will be “painful”); (1/25/17 Trial Tr. at 130
(Conrad) (explaining the plaintiffs attempted to “minimize” transfers in order to achieve the goal
of desegregation while causing the “least disruption” to the USM system). Testimony from TWI
presidents made clear that, of all aspects of the plaintiffs’ proposal, they view the prospect of
transfers as the most problematic, because it may harm the reputation of their institutions; make
it harder to attract and retain highly-qualified faculty and students; and threaten institutional
accreditation in light of possible enrollment dips and resource concerns.
The HBI presidents expressed mixed views on the importance of program transfers when
it comes to desegregating their institutions. Although Morgan’s President Wilson claimed that
transfers must be part of any viable remedy, Bowie’s President Burnim testified that transfers are
not an optimal way to build diversity at higher education institutions. (1/9/17 PM Trial Tr. at 30–
31 (Wilson); 1/11/17 PM Trial Tr. at 6 (Burnim)). And while the plaintiffs insist that program
transfers are needed, even they concede the importance of transfers varies by institution. (See
Final Expert Report, PRX 312 at 28) (Transfers “may be particularly compelling where the HBI
is currently offering a few unique and high-demand programs within a programmatic niche, but
the portfolio of discrete programs and degree levels are dispersed among multiple
Further, the court is mindful that, according to TWI presidents, the uncertainty caused by
the threat of program transfers may undermine faculty and student recruitment. See, supra,
Proposed Remedies, IV.C.1; 1/30/17 Trial Tr. at 39-40, 76, 81 (Hrabowski); 2/1/17 Trial Tr. at
46 (Schatzel); 2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 68 (Schmoke); 2/6/17 Trial Tr. at 166-67 (Miyares). The court
also is hesitant to order transfers that may disrupt the progress that has been made integrating the
TWIs and could harm the students at those integrated institutions. According to TWI presidents,
their institutions may suffer: negative reputational impacts; possible loss of valuable business
and government partnerships and investments; loss of faculty who teach across more than one
According to the plaintiffs, four out of the ten proposed niches involve program transfers. (Pls. Proposed Findings
of Fact at 177, ECF No. 622). That tally appears to omit the proposed transfer of a doctorate in Management,
Community College Policy & Administration from UMUC to Morgan’s proposed Urban Environment, Health, and
Sustainability niche. (See PRX 21 at 5). Although the plaintiffs revised their proposal with respect to transfers from
UMUC post-trial, they still appear to endorse this transfer. (See Pls. Proposed Findings of Fact at 124-25, ECF No.
program within the institution; and ripple effects across other programs. See, supra, Proposed
Remedies IV.C.1-2; 1/30/17 Trial Tr. at 67-68, 75, 94 (Hrabowski); 2/9/17 Trial Tr. at 40, 72
(Schmoke); 2/1/17 Trial Tr. at 43, 47, 50-51 (Schatzel); 1/31/17 Trial Tr. at 35-36, 41
(Simmons). Considering the significant concerns raised by the TWI presidents and other
witnesses, noted here and above in section IV, which the court finds credible, and the lack of
support for such transfers in prior remedies, the court concludes that program transfers need not
form a part of a final remedy in this case unless agreed to by the affected institutions.
Funding for Recruitment, Financial Aid, and Marketing
The court also will require the State to provide funding to the HBIs for student
recruitment, financial aid, and marketing. Like the creation of new programs, there is broad
support for the desegregative effects of these initiatives. The State’s second proposed remedy
includes funding for the HBIs focused on enrollment management, student aid, campus inclusion
initiatives, and summer academies tied to scholarships. The plaintiffs’ revised remedial proposal
took a similar approach, requesting additional funding for, among other things, scholarships,
marketing, and recruitment. These aspects of both the State’s and the plaintiffs’ proposals were
supported by expert testimony—funding for marketing and scholarships “further amplifies” the
attractiveness of a programmatic niche, (1/18/17 PM Trial Tr. at 20-22 (Allen))—and by
testimony of both HBI and TWI presidents, as cited in the State’s proposal. (ECF No. 621).
Based on this consensus, the court concludes that funding to be used within the discretion
of the HBIs for recruitment, financial aid, and marketing, which may include summer academies
and other initiatives, is warranted to enhance the desegregative effect of new unique, highdemand programs.
Finally, the court finds the current MHEC program approval process adequate. As the list
of factors considered already includes an educational justification for duplicative programs, there
is not a significant difference between plaintiff’s proposed “unnecessary” standard and the
existing “unreasonable” standard. (See PRX 28 at 16 (COMAR 13B.02.03.09(C)(2)(g)).
Additionally, Bowie’s President Burnim testified that the approval process is functioning
properly, and MHEC has not been approving programs over HBI objections. (1/11/17 AM Trial
Tr. at 69-70, 72 (Burnim); see also 1/12/17 AM Trial Tr. at 8 (Thompson)). Nonetheless, as
steps are being taken to avoid unnecessary program duplication, MHEC must be conscious of the
court’s remedy in deciding whether to approve future program requests. The court will require
consultation with the Special Master before future program approvals are made by MHEC while
the Remedial Order is in effect.
REMEDY FOR MARYLAND
In summary, the court finds that neither party’s remedy, as currently proposed, is
practicable, educationally sound, and sufficient to address the segregative harms of program
duplication at the HBIs. At least in part, this results from the parties’ failure or inability to
consult with the other side in crafting their proposals. Further, the court has not been given
sufficient information about the cost of the proposals. Instead of adopting either one as it stands,
the court will appoint a Special Master to develop a Remedial Plan. The Plan will incorporate
elements of the parties’ proposals while also addressing the concerns articulated above. The
Special Master must consult with all relevant actors to obtain all necessary information for
developing a successful Remedial Plan.
The Plan should propose a set of new unique and/or high demand programs at each HBI,
taking into account each HBIs’ areas of strength, physical building capacity, and the
programmatic niches suggested by the plaintiffs’ experts. Building on HBIs’ existing areas of
strength offers the best chance at program success, and thus the best opportunity for new
programs to lessen or eliminate the segregative effects of past program duplication. The Plan
should not include program transfers or closings without agreement from the affected
Further, the Remedial Plan should provide funding for a period to be used for student
recruitment, financial aid, marketing, and related initiatives. The Special Master, in conjunction
with the parties, also should develop a reporting plan on the status of the remedial plan’s
implementation, to be submitted to the court for periodic approval.
The court will end as it began: crafting such a Plan is a daunting task requiring the good
faith collaboration of the Coalition and the State. The court urges such collaboration to
strengthen and enhance Maryland’s HBIs for the benefit of all Maryland students, present and
A separate Order follows.
Nov. 8, 2017
Catherine C. Blake
United States District Judge
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