The Professor Who Was Harassed for Pointing Out the Truth

That famous line from the movie A Few Good Men—“You can’t handle the truth!”—applies more and more to the world of higher education. If you doubt that, consider the case of professor Samuel Abrams of Sarah Lawrence College. Abrams, a tenured professor of political science who admits that he “leans conservative” has been studying the … Continue reading “The Professor Who Was Harassed for Pointing Out the Truth”


Blackmail Added to Mob Rule on UNC Activists’ Resumes

The proper term for the actions of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill graduate student assistants and instructors threatening to withhold grades unless Silent Sam—a statue of a Confederate soldier who was pulled off his pedestal by a mob of activists in August—is removed from campus is not “strike,” as the activists claim. … Continue reading “Blackmail Added to Mob Rule on UNC Activists’ Resumes”


From Diverse Professors to Professors of Diversity

Ever since Justice Powell’s lone opinion in Bakke allowed the camel’s nose of “diversity” under the anti-discrimination tent, controversy has raged over preferential treatment awarded to college applicants of certain races. Just as hurricanes often change direction after landfall, the diversity movement has recently taken off in some surprising new directions that deserve public attention. … Continue reading “From Diverse Professors to Professors of Diversity”


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”


A Tale of Two Alumni Associations

An important voice is missing in today’s colleges and universities: that of their alumni. Their absence does a disservice to both students and the general public because, in many ways, alumni are the missing link that connects universities to the larger communities they serve. After all, alumni work in the “real world” after graduation and … Continue reading “A Tale of Two Alumni Associations”


What the Hoax Papers Tell Us about the Decline of Academic Standards

By now, most followers of the higher education press have heard of the “grievance studies” or Sokal Squared hoax. In this incident, a team of three researchers successfully published several hoax papers on intentionally absurd subjects in ostensibly serious scholarly journals. Their purpose was to demonstrate the susceptibility of these venues to low-quality, ideologically charged … Continue reading “What the Hoax Papers Tell Us about the Decline of Academic Standards”


Why Shouldn’t College Students Have the Equivalent of Miranda Rights?

Colleges and universities need rules defining unacceptable behavior and how students accused of infractions of those rules will be treated. Because determinations of guilt can have serious, long-lasting consequences, schools ought to ensure that their procedures are fair, approximating the due process of law accorded to defendants in our courts. Crucial to due process is … Continue reading “Why Shouldn’t College Students Have the Equivalent of Miranda Rights?”


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”


Time to Break the Mold for UNC Presidents

The sudden departure of Margaret Spellings from the presidency of the University of North Carolina system presents a unique opportunity to address academia’s most serious problem. The problem is intellectual, not operational or economic. Recent UNC presidents have focused on issues such as access, efficiency, and economic development, as did Spellings. All of these require … Continue reading “Time to Break the Mold for UNC Presidents”


The Fight Being Waged on the Academic Battlefield

The violent events in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017 have fueled a deep-seated leftist desire to re-write American history. Demands to topple statues, remove portraits, rename buildings, and repudiate founders—all in an effort to cleanse any objectionable reality from our history—have reached a fever pitch. The parallel to George Orwell’s 1984 is unmistakable. Orwell wrote: “Who … Continue reading “The Fight Being Waged on the Academic Battlefield”