Also: ‘A Failed Medical School’: How Racial Preferences, Supposedly Outlawed in California, Have Persisted at UCLA: Up to half of UCLA medical students now fail basic tests of medical competence. Whistleblowers say affirmative action, illegal in California since 1996, is to blame.

So when it came time for the admissions committee to consider one such student in November 2021—a black applicant with grades and test scores far below the UCLA average—some members of the committee felt that this particular candidate, based on the available evidence, was not the best fit for the top-tier medical school, according to two people present for the committee’s meeting.

Their reservations were not well-received.

When an admissions officer voiced concern about the candidate, the two people said, the dean of admissions, Jennifer Lucero, exploded in anger.

“Did you not know African-American women are dying at a higher rate than everybody else?” Lucero asked the admissions officer, these people said. The candidate’s scores shouldn’t matter, she continued, because “we need people like this in the medical school.”

Even before the Supreme Court’s landmark affirmative action ban last year, public schools in California were barred by state law from considering race in admissions. The outburst from Lucero, who discussed race explicitly despite that ban, unsettled some admissions officers, one of whom reached out to other committee members in the wake of the incident. “We are not consistent in the way we apply the metrics to these applicants,” the official wrote in an email obtained by the Washington Free Beacon. “This is troubling.”

“I wondered,” the official added, “if this applicant had been [a] white male, or [an] Asian female for that matter, [whether] we would have had that much discussion.”

Since Lucero took over medical school admissions in June 2020, several of her colleagues have asked the same question. . . . Led by Lucero, who also serves as the vice chair for equity, diversity, and inclusion of UCLA’s anesthesiology department, the admissions committee routinely gives black and Latino applicants a pass for subpar metrics, four people who served on it said, while whites and Asians need near perfect scores to even be considered.

Sounds like a conspiracy to deprive people of their civil rights, under color of law. And if you’re worried about black women dying, maybe don’t send them incompetent doctors?

Plus: “Within three years of Lucero’s hiring in 2020, UCLA dropped from 6th to 18th place in U.S. News & World Report’s rankings for medical research. And in some of the cohorts she admitted, more than 50 percent of students failed standardized tests on emergency medicine, family medicine, internal medicine, and pediatrics.”

So who hired her, and who kept her on the job?