Study Only What You Want? Not If You Want to Be Successful

Recently, a general education course at UNC-Chapel Hill, “Big-Time College Sports,” was canceled. This sparked controversy after the course’s professor, Jay Smith, argued that the class, which he had taught in previous semesters, was axed because its treatment of Chapel Hill’s recent academic/athletics scandal cast the university in a negative light. Lost in much of … Continue reading “Study Only What You Want? Not If You Want to Be Successful”


Student Free Speech Suffers a Defeat

Since launching its Stand Up for Free Speech project in 2014, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) has had a great deal of success in defeating college officials when they interfere with the free speech of students. But you can’t win them all, and a recent decision went against FIRE and the students … Continue reading “Student Free Speech Suffers a Defeat”


My University Treated Me Like a Criminal Over a Joke

For the past six years, I have taught an undergraduate course on international economics at Johns Hopkins University. Most of my students thought it was a very good course. So I was shocked when, on December 6, 2016, I was met at the door of my classroom by Johns Hopkins security personnel and barred from … Continue reading “My University Treated Me Like a Criminal Over a Joke”


student governments

Student Governments Can Help to Restore Faith in Higher Education

Higher education has a public relations problem on its hands. The results of a new Pew Research survey show that almost 60 percent of Republicans believe higher education has a “negative effect on the way things are going in the country.” Given recent high-profile cases involving violent protests, the shouting-down of conservative campus speakers, and … Continue reading “Student Governments Can Help to Restore Faith in Higher Education”


books on fire

Professors Should Write Books That Seek Truth, Not Inflame Passions

The academic enterprise is supposed to be about truth. Those who are entrusted to teach are expected to convey knowledge to their students, not their opinions. And when academics write books, they should do so to deepen knowledge in their fields, never to mislead readers. Sometimes, however, academics allow their zeal to convert students or … Continue reading “Professors Should Write Books That Seek Truth, Not Inflame Passions”


Wake Forest Eudaimonia Institute

An Inside Perspective on Radicals’ Treatment of Wake Forest’s Eudaimonia Institute

Last fall Wake Forest University announced a $4.2 million donation to fund “the study of human flourishing” at the university’s newest institute—the Eudaimonia Institute (EI). Although it took people a while to pronounce this elegant Greek word correctly—the pronunciation is “yoo-dye-mo-NEE-uh”—the generous gift seemed to be a perfect fit with Wake’s mission. The Greek root … Continue reading “An Inside Perspective on Radicals’ Treatment of Wake Forest’s Eudaimonia Institute”


racial protest

How Colleges Themselves Bring About Racial Protests

This academic year has been punctuated by a series of high-profile campus protests. Many student grievances have, as in previous years, centered on claims of racial injustice. If next academic year is to be about education rather than protest, faculty and administrators must explore the role they play in both politicizing college life and racializing … Continue reading “How Colleges Themselves Bring About Racial Protests”


stop bias, promote free speech

North Carolina’s New Institutional Neutrality Policy Is a Win for Preventing Campus Bias

Yesterday, I came to bury Caesar. That was a mistake, so today, I’m going to praise him. By “Caesar,” I mean the North Carolina Legislature. I wanted to “bury” them—in rhetorical fashion—for removing institutional neutrality out of the otherwise outstanding North Carolina Campus Free Speech Act (HB 527). After we published that article, I reread … Continue reading “North Carolina’s New Institutional Neutrality Policy Is a Win for Preventing Campus Bias”


legal education

Making Legal Education Great Again

Legal education has become a surprisingly regular topic of news media for several years now. Most of this commentary has focused on enrollment and matriculation problems, bar passage rates, accreditation standards, student debt, and the job market for recent graduates. These are pressing issues that raise vexing questions for law school administrators, and they warrant … Continue reading “Making Legal Education Great Again”


Shouts and Protests on Campus Are Signs of a More Pernicious Problem

Vice President Mike Pence spoke to the graduating class of Notre Dame, drawing attention to the loss of free speech on American campuses. He denounced the “noxious wave that seems to be rushing over much of academia.” The problem is that this wave is coming from within academia, not “rushing over” it as if from … Continue reading “Shouts and Protests on Campus Are Signs of a More Pernicious Problem”