How NC State Became Free-Speech Friendly

Free speech on North Carolina’s campuses has come a long way in the last decade. North Carolina State University is the most recent school to earn a “green light” from the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) for its speech policies. Nearly ten years ago, when the Martin Center partnered with FIRE to take … Continue reading “How NC State Became Free-Speech Friendly”


The Radical Experimental College in the Blue Ridge Mountains

North Carolina is widely respected for institutions such as the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Duke University, both research-intensive and high-prestige schools. But it’s less known for a radically experimental college that was tucked away in the Appalachian mountains more than half a century ago. Just east of Asheville, Black Mountain College … Continue reading “The Radical Experimental College in the Blue Ridge Mountains”


UNC System Schools Profiting Off Unused Student Meals

College meal plans can help students avoid buying groceries and cooking for themselves—but they can also cost thousands of dollars each semester. In the University of North Carolina system, some students get a relative bargain, but others pay 60 percent more with fewer spending options. Even though some UNC campuses take in hundreds of thousands … Continue reading “UNC System Schools Profiting Off Unused Student Meals”


March Madness Means Skyhigh Athletics Spending

As March Madness hits and the public’s attention is on college basketball’s NCAA Tournament, few spectators know just how much the public subsidizes college sports. Within the University of North Carolina system, funding can range from $8 million at UNC-Asheville to an eye-popping $96 million at UNC-Chapel Hill. Revenue from broadcast agreements, ticket sales, and … Continue reading “March Madness Means Skyhigh Athletics Spending”


The Essential Ingredient for a ‘Deep Education’

About a year ago, Princeton philosopher Robert P. George came to Chapel Hill, North Carolina to speak about civil discourse and diversity of thought with the UNC system Board of Governors. He returned on February 8, but this time he came with Cornel West, a long-time friend and philosopher at Harvard University, as guest speakers … Continue reading “The Essential Ingredient for a ‘Deep Education’”


NC Promise’s Costs and Benefits: An Early Analysis

Concerned about the high cost of college, the University of North Carolina system is testing a low-tuition model at some schools to drive up enrollments. Though the experiment only started last fall, some preliminary observations can be made. The North Carolina Promise Tuition Plan was created by legislators in 2016 to help students who struggle … Continue reading “NC Promise’s Costs and Benefits: An Early Analysis”


Preparing Students for Life Beyond High School

Few factors affect the long-term direction of students’ lives more than the quality of their K-12 education. For students who decide to attend a four-year university, their ability to keep up with college-level work is closely linked to how well their high school prepared them. Additionally, high school is the ideal time to consider what … Continue reading “Preparing Students for Life Beyond High School”


Collegiate Esports Programs Are Here to Stay

More money flows to arenas and building upgrades. The hunt for recruits gets more competitive. University presidents brag about how their new program will make the school nationally known. But the cause isn’t basketball or football. This time around, the athletics arms race on campus is for “esports”—competitive video gaming. And it’s a trend driven … Continue reading “Collegiate Esports Programs Are Here to Stay”


Protecting Student-Athletes in the UNC System

In college athletics, student-athletes have few protections against coaching demands that may put their health at risk. As the parent of a college athlete who was left with a chronic back injury, I was shocked to discover how state universities deprive their athletes of health care, injury and abuse protections, and information about athletic policies. … Continue reading “Protecting Student-Athletes in the UNC System”


Radically Transforming the Nation: Our Politicized Schools of Education

If somebody wanted to fundamentally transform a society to its roots, where would he or she start? The most logical starting point would be education. And if there were one part of the educational system that would produce this transformation most broadly, effectively, and efficiently, it would most likely be at our schools of education … Continue reading “Radically Transforming the Nation: Our Politicized Schools of Education”