Macalester College: Liberal Arts or Monoculture?

Macalester College is a small (2,000-plus students), highly regarded, and very selective liberal arts college in St. Paul, Minnesota. It is proud of its liberal reputation and international outlook, and touts as past faculty vice presidents Hubert Humphrey and Walter Mondale, as well as undergraduate Kofi Anan, previous head of the United Nations. Macalester boasts … Continue reading “Macalester College: Liberal Arts or Monoculture?”


Reforming Higher Education: A Reading List

As more students have headed to college and a degree is seen as a way to shape students as workers and as citizens, higher education’s mission has become more important. Its leaders, and their personal beliefs, have become more contentious, too. In recent months, many conservative thinkers have publicly debated how to reform higher education—or, … Continue reading “Reforming Higher Education: A Reading List”


The Oberlin Case Gives College Leaders a Teachable Moment

When college officials violate people’s rights, they run the risk of bringing on lawsuits that can cost their schools a lot of money.  The most common instance has been hyper-aggressive Title IX actions where the accused student was presumed guilty and railroaded into suspension or expulsion and later successfully sued over the violation of his … Continue reading “The Oberlin Case Gives College Leaders a Teachable Moment”


Why Is UNC Funding a ‘Hub for Social Justice?’

Campus protests started in the 1960s, but protests on today’s college campuses have a different vibe. While protests in the past pitted students against university leadership, protests in the present are supported and accommodated by presidents and administrators. At the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, for example, college officials waste resources on political … Continue reading “Why Is UNC Funding a ‘Hub for Social Justice?’”


Arts Everywhere: Distracting from a UNC Scandal

Although the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s former chancellor, Carol Folt, will mostly be remembered for the numerous scandals and years-long protests on campus during her tenure, she also leaves behind other less-publicized, but still controversial, projects. One of those projects she oversaw is Arts Everywhere, a “campus-wide arts initiative supported by the … Continue reading “Arts Everywhere: Distracting from a UNC Scandal”


The Rise of Engineering’s Social Justice Warriors

In 2015, Colorado School of Mines writing instructor Dr. Jon Leydens delivered a TED talk titled “engineering and social justice.” According to Leydens, in the mid-2000s students started asking him about how they could combine their “passion for social justice” with their “interest in engineering.” Leydens is part of a growing movement that seeks to … Continue reading “The Rise of Engineering’s Social Justice Warriors”


Social Justice Teaching Has Invaded Business Schools

Many professors cannot resist the temptation to smuggle their personal beliefs into the courses they teach. As long as those beliefs are “progressive,” there is little chance that higher-ups in their departments or top administrators will try to rein them in. For example, engineering has been infiltrated by activists who are concerned about social justice … Continue reading “Social Justice Teaching Has Invaded Business Schools”


How Political Indoctrination Destroyed the Promise of Learning in College Writing Courses

By wide agreement of writing professors and composition scholars, new freshmen arrive not only ill-prepared for college writing but many show little improvement after four years of undergraduate education. In 2002 the College Board established the National Commission on Writing, which found “growing concern within the education, business, and policy-making communities that the level of … Continue reading “How Political Indoctrination Destroyed the Promise of Learning in College Writing Courses”


‘Social Justice’ is Overrunning the University of Texas

The latest racket in higher education, evident at my alma mater, the University of Texas at Austin, is the disturbing proliferation of “social justice” as a degree program, a course topic, an academic emphasis, and even as a prerequisite in campus job descriptions. “Social justice” is a seemingly innocuous term with no established definition. Many … Continue reading “‘Social Justice’ is Overrunning the University of Texas”


Three Ways Declining English Departments Can Be Relevant Again

A major in English was once a serious endeavor masquerading as a frivolous one. Despite the occasional “do you want fries with that?” condescension from business or science students, the study of literature—immersion in its aesthetic, historical, and philosophical contexts—conserved for posterity a reservoir of truth and paid forward for humanity a legacy of beauty … Continue reading “Three Ways Declining English Departments Can Be Relevant Again”