A Conversation with the Chancellor of UNC-Chapel Hill

On December 13th, 2019, Dr. Kevin Guskiewicz became the 12th chancellor of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prior to his appointment, he had been serving as interim chancellor after Carol Folt abruptly resigned in January 2019. Guskiewicz took leadership during a time of upheaval on UNC-Chapel Hill’s campus. Before resigning, Folt ordered … Continue reading “A Conversation with the Chancellor of UNC-Chapel Hill”


North Carolina Colleges Shouldn’t Confuse Cafeteria-Style Curriculum with Strong Liberal Arts

There are a lot of good reasons to question the value of a traditional college degree. Tuition costs have been rising at a rate that’s almost eight times faster than wage growth, and yet survey after survey indicates graduates are still woefully unprepared when entering the workforce. While it’s tempting to blame poor preparation on … Continue reading “North Carolina Colleges Shouldn’t Confuse Cafeteria-Style Curriculum with Strong Liberal Arts”


Fixing a Liberal Arts Education Requires a Standardized Curriculum

In higher education, the value of a liberal arts education has been frequently debated. Defenders on the left argue that it exposes students to coursework and teaches critical thinking skills they would otherwise miss. Critics on the right, however, have argued that the liberal arts can be a vehicle for leftist indoctrination and provide minimal … Continue reading “Fixing a Liberal Arts Education Requires a Standardized Curriculum”


The Four Perspectives of Higher Education Policy Explained

Explaining higher education policy is never easy (even to people who are involved in it). Over the years, while training young writers for the Martin Center, I have come up with a model that has proven useful. One way to produce clarity among the confusion is to apply a model having four basic perspectives rather … Continue reading “The Four Perspectives of Higher Education Policy Explained”


UNC’s New Gen Ed Proposal Reflects Major Philosophical Shift from Knowledge to Process

It is imperative that universities take the time to deeply reflect on their purpose (or rather, purposes). There is no better time for UNC-Chapel Hill to do so than now, as it crafts a new general education curriculum. In 2016, the dean of College of Arts and Sciences, Kevin Guskiewicz, decided that it was time … Continue reading “UNC’s New Gen Ed Proposal Reflects Major Philosophical Shift from Knowledge to Process”



General Education at NC State

In the Pope Center’s latest report, Jay Schalin, director of policy analysis, says that North Carolina State University’s general education program is “deeply flawed” because students can select from courses that are “too narrow,” “trivial,” and often “inspired by political correctness.”


Declining by Degrees: Higher Education at Risk

Declining by Degrees: Higher Education at Risk Edited by Richard H. Hersh and John Merrow Palgrave Macmillan, 2005, 244 pages, $24.95 Books critical of higher education in America used to be written almost exclusively by “outsiders” who were armed with well-sharpened philosophical axes – Dinesh D’Souza and Charles Sykes, for example. Today, however, we are … Continue reading “Declining by Degrees: Higher Education at Risk”


Study: UNC’s general-education core is weak

RALEIGH – General-education requirements at 11 University of North Carolina institutions are weak, according to a new study commissioned by the Pope Center for Higher Education Policy. UNC students are seven times more likely to be required to take a cultural diversity course than they are to study a foreign language, unlikely to be required to study Western history or civilization or even introductory literature, and not required at all to study United States history.


Why it’s so hard to get a sound general education from UNC schools

Under today’s assumptions, it isn’t enough to teach history. History incorporates things outside the aegis. But “Third World History” and “African American History” (which address racism), “History of Women in America” (which addresses sexism), and “Lesbians in History” (which addresses homophobia) will do.