A Life-Changing Meeting of Minds

In 1985, Roosevelt Montás arrived in the United States aged twelve, speaking no English, accustomed to life in a rural mountain village of the Dominican Republic where he had passed his boyhood—a village with one shared telephone. Six years later, he matriculated to Columbia University. He went on to earn his PhD there, and subsequently … Continue reading “A Life-Changing Meeting of Minds”

Did You Know? The UK Wants Free Speech on Campus

In a new law that will change the direction of higher education in the United Kingdom, the British government is drafting the Higher Education (Freedom of Speech) Bill, which might require universities to defend free speech and freedom of expression. The British political system lacks the First Amendment protections for free speech like the American … Continue reading “Did You Know? The UK Wants Free Speech on Campus”

Perpetual Scandal-Mongering as a Political Tool

Members of the media and faculty erupted into histrionics at the recent appointment of Darrell Allison to the chancellorship of Fayetteville State University. It is a great scandal, they claimed; Allison “cut in line” cried the left-wing think tank NC Policy Watch; the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) and FSU faculty senate questioned not … Continue reading “Perpetual Scandal-Mongering as a Political Tool”

The Spurning of Old Books: The Devaluation of the Past Threatens Higher Ed

Alan Jacobs’ new book, Breaking Bread with the Dead: A Reader’s Guide to a More Tranquil Mind, is a coaxing argument to read “old books that come from strange times.” Readers of his previous works The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction and How to Think will not be surprised that Jacobs, distinguished … Continue reading “The Spurning of Old Books: The Devaluation of the Past Threatens Higher Ed”

NC State’s Quixotic Foreign Language Requirement

For decades, universities have required students to fulfill a foreign language requirement. However, some research has shown that two semesters of a foreign language appears to have no meaningful effect on the language proficiency of college graduates. Putting students through language classes adds to their tuition bill, but doesn’t teach them a new skill for … Continue reading “NC State’s Quixotic Foreign Language Requirement”

Essential Knowledge: Students Should Study the Classical World

Countless students begin and graduate from college with an impoverished humanities education, a reality that should disturb any proponent of the liberal arts. According to a recent report by the Independent Institute entitled Is it Time for a “490 B.C. Project”? High Schoolers Need to Know Our Classical Heritage, “schools are undermining the humanities” by … Continue reading “Essential Knowledge: Students Should Study the Classical World”

Unifying the Country Starts with the Education System

Education reformer E.D. Hirsch may have discovered the cure for our current political divisions—but it won’t be easy. His prescription is a total overhaul of the K-12 education system as well as our schools of education. Hirsch lays out his plan in a new book, How to Educate a Citizen: The Power of Shared Knowledge … Continue reading “Unifying the Country Starts with the Education System”

Thomas Cole, "A View of the Mountain Pass Called the Notch of the White Mountains (Crawford Notch)," 1839.

Why Art Matters

What do conservatives want to conserve? Clearly, conservatives everywhere desire the preservation and maintenance of the good things belonging to their various cultures that have been passed down from previous generations to their present time. That desire also implies conservatives wish to continue their cultural inheritance by passing these benefits on to their children and … Continue reading “Why Art Matters”

Should the University of North Carolina enhance its “global brand”?

Over the past two years, the University of North Carolina has been implementing recommendations laid out by the General Administration and Board of Governors in their 2013 report, “Our Time, Our Future: the UNC Compact with North Carolina.” For example, the system has streamlined the transfer process for students going from community colleges to UNC and defined “core competencies” that all graduates should possess.

Microaggression or Neglect?

If it is really a kind of aggression to correct student grammar, composition teachers are unnecessary.