It is painfully ironic that a university dedicated to growth, to transformation, to move young people forward to dream and think and create, would frighten and mark for life applicants to the school. So a young person who, according to the rules of society has fully paid any penalty imposed by our damaged criminal justice system would still — five years later – ten years later — forever – be forced to publicly proclaim “convicted.” I thought we abolished such scarlet letters long ago. It is time for NYU and all universities and colleges to act as one and rid our applications of such a humiliating question on all of our forms. We need to barrel forward from the 17th into the 21st century. It is simple: Ban the box!

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