News Ackerly addresses student diversity By Margaret Chipowsky | October 1, 1999 University Rector John P. Ackerly III emphasized the Board of Visitors strong support of diversity in admissions while addressing an overflowing crowd in Jefferson Hall last night. Over 150 students attended Ackerly's speech, which was sponsored by the Jefferson Literary and Debating Society. Ackerly discussed several issues he declared "important to the University," but the continuing debate over the use of race as a factor in admissions dominated the discussion. Ackerly said the Board fears lawsuits over its current admissions policies, but is "committed to maintaining diversity," and is unanimous in its support for maintaining a diverse student body. The University's admissions policy is "legal and defensible in court," he said. Saturday, the Virginia State Conference of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People demanded Board member Terence P.