UWindsor law sees female enrollment grow to 70% for class of '24

·2 min read
Reem Bahdi, shown in a file photo, is the dean of the University of Windsor's Faculty of Law. (Sameer Chhabra/CBC - image credit)
Reem Bahdi, shown in a file photo, is the dean of the University of Windsor's Faculty of Law. (Sameer Chhabra/CBC - image credit)

New data is shedding light on the racial and gender diversity of law students in Windsor.

Every year since 2017, the University of Windsor's Faculty of Law surveys its students to get a sense of their backgrounds.

In the class of 2024, 70 per cent of the students identified as women. The usual gender split is around 60 per cent women to 40 per cent men, explained Reem Bahdi, the dean of the law school.

She said she isn't sure the reason behind the increase this year.

"We don't set quotas, either on gender or on racialization or other categories. It's a result of our inclusive and holistic admissions program," Bahdi told CBC Radio's Windsor Morning on Wednesday.

The process asks applicants to explain how they've showed resilience in their life and demonstrate that they have something to contribute to society through their law degree, she said.

"Every year we come up with a class that's diverse and that's committed to the diversity of the community around it," Bahdi said.

Fifty per cent of those in the program identified as being racially diverse, a figure that has fallen a few percentage points from 2020. Twenty-three per cent are first-generation Canadians, and 53 per cent can speak a second language.

Some law firms really starting to realize that "the diversity of the population requires them to think about the diversity of own workforce," she said.

Bahdi said that diversity within the profession is important for many reasons.

"At Windsor law, we're committed to the idea of inclusive excellence, which really means that you can think through a problem, you can understand an issue best when you have people sitting around the table who come from a different perspective."

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