Wow! This is a tough call. I really appreciate the sentiment behind Lincoln University’s fitness requirement for undergraduates. But in today’s politically correct atmosphere, I can’t image that it will stand a chance in the court of public opinion. Here’s the story.
Students at Lincoln University, PA with a body mass index of 30 or above (meaning they are medically obese) must take a fitness course that meets three hours per week. Those assigned to the class who do not complete it, can not graduate. This fitness requirement was instituted for the freshman class of 2006. And these students are now seniors facing graduation.
According to CNN, one of those affected is “Tiana Lawson, 21, whose recent editorial in the student paper has drawn national attention to the issue. Lawson wrote in The Lincolnian that she would be more understanding if the requirement applied to everyone. She thinks all students, not just those with a high BMI, should have to take the class.”
Lincoln is not, however, the only college to have a phys ed requirement. I know that Columbia University in the City of New York requires students to pass a swimming test. I imagine they offer swimming lessons for those who need them. So, is this so much different? Those students that can’t pass the BMI, must take a class. Classes are also frequently required at many colleges for those who can’t test out of writing or computer skills.
What do you think? Is Lincoln University discriminating in an unlawful way against obese students? Or they are within their rights to require obese students to take a fitness class?