Commentary: Attending a Different Selective Institution

May is National College Decision Month, when 1.2 million Class of 2022 high school seniors must commit to the institution where they’ll spend the next four-to-six years. 

Two of those high school seniors, Bill and Jane, will soon graduate and both will attend a very selective, but very different, institution in the fall. Let’s explore and project the net return on their decisions, six-years from now, based on facts and national averages.

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Lawmakers Call for Investigation, Criticize Federally-Funded Critical Race Theory Program

Gus Bilirakis

Republican lawmakers blasted a federally funded education program that trains researchers and teachers in critical race theory after The Center Square’s investigation broke news of the program. Now, one Florida U.S. Congressman is calling for an investigation into whether the program violates state law.

Newly uncovered Department of Education grant documents show that the department awarded $1,020,800 in a 2017 grant and $1,498,620 in a 2021 grant to a Florida-based program called Partners United for Research Pathways Oriented to Social Justice in Education (PURPOSE).

The taxpayer-funded program – led by Florida State University, which has partnered with Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University – offers participants one-year fellowships. Participants receive training in a range of issues, including critical race theory, during the fellowships.

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REPORT: More than 18 Christian Universities Actively Promote Abortion Providers

Person sitting down. Praying hands on a Bible

Students for Life of America’s (SFLA) recently documented dozens of Christian-affiliated schools that maintain ties with or reference to Planned Parenthood.

Campus Reform found many of these schools are also tied to abortion in other ways. Below is a sampling of Christian-affiliated universities and colleges that promote abortion advocacy and providers. 

Texas Christian University

Affiliation: Disciples of Christ

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Female Swimmers Discuss Biological Disadvantages Compared to Lia Thomas, UPenn’s Male Swimmer on Women’s Team

person swimming

Cynthia Millen, a USA Swimming referee, recently resigned her post in protest of University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) swimmer Lia Thomas, born as Will Thomas, a transgender athlete who has stirred up controversy after dominating the sport on the women’s team.

Up until November 2019, Thomas competed as a male in the NCAA, which “mandate[s] at least one year of testosterone suppression treatment to be eligible to compete as a woman,” according to the New York Post.

Now competing as a female, Thomas has been able to break school records with ease, causing student athletes, and professional athletes to speak out.

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Commentary: Why I Stopped Donating to Harvard, My Alma Mater

The statue of John Harvard, seen at Harvard Yard

This year, for the first time since graduation some two decades ago, I did not donate to either of my alma maters. Like many of you, I have become disillusioned with the illiberalism on many college campuses and could no longer support them with an annual gift. While higher education has historically tipped to the political left, the gap has widened in recent decades. Analyzing data on faculty ideological leanings, the American Enterprise Institute reported that “in less than 30 years the ratio of liberal identifying faculty to conservative faculty had more than doubled to 5.” 

At Harvard, where I attended graduate school, the faculty political imbalance is particularly striking. According to a 2021 survey by The Harvard Crimson, the college newspaper, out of 236 faculty replies only 7 people said they are “somewhat” or “very conservative,” while 183 respondents indicated that they are “somewhat” or “very liberal.” A similar problem plagues my undergraduate college, Bowdoin. 

The absence of my meager donations won’t matter to the colleges I attended, each of which has billions of dollars in endowment money. But big alumni donors at some leading universities are using their influence to improve free thought and inquiry on college campuses. 

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Commentary: Why I Stopped Donating to Harvard, My Alma Mater

The statue of John Harvard, seen at Harvard Yard

This year, for the first time since graduation some two decades ago, I did not donate to either of my alma maters. Like many of you, I have become disillusioned with the illiberalism on many college campuses and could no longer support them with an annual gift. While higher education has historically tipped to the political left, the gap has widened in recent decades. Analyzing data on faculty ideological leanings, the American Enterprise Institute reported that “in less than 30 years the ratio of liberal identifying faculty to conservative faculty had more than doubled to 5.” 

At Harvard, where I attended graduate school, the faculty political imbalance is particularly striking. According to a 2021 survey by The Harvard Crimson, the college newspaper, out of 236 faculty replies only 7 people said they are “somewhat” or “very conservative,” while 183 respondents indicated that they are “somewhat” or “very liberal.” A similar problem plagues my undergraduate college, Bowdoin. 

The absence of my meager donations won’t matter to the colleges I attended, each of which has billions of dollars in endowment money. But big alumni donors at some leading universities are using their influence to improve free thought and inquiry on college campuses. 

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University Ordered to Pay Almost $2 Million After Students Win Religious Freedom Lawsuit

A federal judge ordered the University of Iowa (UI) to pay $1.9 million in fees and damages after two student groups won a series of religious discrimination lawsuits against the university. 

The Becket Fund, which represents Business Leaders in Christ, will receive $1.37 million while Intervarsity Christian Fellowship will get $533,000, Crux reports. 

Eric Baxter, a senior VP and counsel at The Becket Fund, told Campus Reform targeting students of faith “comes at a price.” 

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Commentary: The Senate Must Defeat Communist Saule Omarova for Comptroller of the Currency

Saule Omarova

 
Every so often we receive a comment to the effect that we are paranoid and should stop seeing a Communist under every bed, however, it appears that based on the views expressed by Prof. Saule Omarova, President Biden’s nominee for Comptroller of the Currency, our concerns about the takeover of the Democratic Party by Socialists and Communists have received some very solid confirmation.

Indeed, Omarova is so far out in Communism’s Left Field that Janet Yellen, Biden’s Treasury secretary (a garden variety liberal Democrat) raised concerns about her taking the post.

And Secretary Yellin’s concerns are amply justified.
In 2019, Omarova posted to Twitter in support of the “old USSR” where there was “no gender pay gap.” She attempted to do damage control after being criticized for it, but failed to fully condemn the Soviet Union.

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Virginia Universities Start Kicking Out Unvaccinated Students

Some Virginia universities have started kicking out students who refused to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and other institutions may start following suit.

Virginia Tech disenrolled 134 students this week who did not receive the vaccine. Before that, the University of Virginia disenrolled 288 students, and William & Mary withdrew 42 students for the same reason. All three universities require students be vaccinated against COVID-19 unless they receive a medical or religious exemption.

“Of the approximately 37,000 students enrolled at Virginia Tech, 134 students were not in compliance with the COVID-19 vaccination requirement, meaning that they did not submit vaccination documentation or receive a medical or religious exemption,” a statement on Virginia Tech’s website read. “These students have been disenrolled. The university does not know whether any of these students were not planning to return for reasons unrelated to the COVID-19 vaccine requirement.”

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Indiana Attorney General Investigates University’s Ties to Chinese Communist Party

Xi Jinping

Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita announced that his office will investigate the  and the Chinese Communist Party’s Confucius Institute at Valparaiso University. 

“The investigation is aimed at identifying and getting to the bottom of the true intent of any relationships between Valparaiso University’s programming and the Chinese Communist Party,” a statement from Rokita’s office reads. 

Valparaiso, a private Lutheran institution, received $1.1 million from the Chinese government between 2010-2019 and acknowledges the Rokita’s investigation on its Confucius Institute website. 

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University of North Carolina’s Hussman School of Journalism and Media Dean Resigns Post after Nikole Hannah-Jones Controversy

Susan King of UNC

Susan King is stepping down as dean of the University of North Carolina’s Hussman School of Journalism and Media. 

The university announced the decision yesterday. 

The Hussman School faced backlash from progressives after it apparently backed off from a plan to give Hannah-Jones tenure for her work as the Knight Chair in Race and Investigative Journalism. 

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Ohio Lawmakers Want Local School Mask Mandates to End

Mike Loychik

An Ohio lawmaker wants to remove the mask-wearing decision for K-12 students across the state from local school boards by having the state prohibit any district from requiring masks.

Rep. Mike Loychik, R-Bazetta, said he plans to introduce legislation to stop school districts across the state from mandating students wear masks, saying parents in his district are upset school boards have required masks as the school year begins.

Lakeview and Warren school boards, each in Loychik’s district, voted to require masks for students.

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University Refuses to Rehire Math Professor Who Criticized Slavery Reparations

Saint Joseph’s University will not renew its contract with math Professor Gregory Manco despite the fact that a three-month investigation into his Twitter history found he had not violated any campus policies.

Manco has been a non-tenured assistant professor of math at Saint Joseph’s since 2005 and also a volunteer assistant baseball coach, but tweets in February criticizing slavery reparations and racial bias training had prompted the probe even though he used an anonymous account.

He was put on administrative leave during the probe. Its outcome, announced in May, determined Manco could not be found guilty of violating any policies, citing “insufficient evidence.”

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George Washington University’s Francis Scott Key Hall May Face Name Change

University Yard, George Washington University

Among a list of building names George Washington University has collected for study and review is Francis Scott Key Hall.

Key is the author of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

But the private, Washington D.C.-based university has received a request to rename Francis Scott Key Hall and it will consider whether to scrap the moniker at some point in the future, according to its Name Change Request Registry.

University officials did not respond to repeated requests from The College Fix over the last week asking about the nature of the complaint or complaints against Francis Scott Key Hall and whether students or faculty asked for it to be reviewed.

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Commentary: Tax All Foundations and Endowments Now

Yale University

If there were trillions of dollars socked away in convenient vehicles to avoid taxes and benefit the ultra-elite should we not tax them? Are they not fair game in a just system of taxation, where the little guy and the middle class have to pay up—or else? 

The largest endowments, mainly universities indoctrinating students in social justice, wokeism, and class warfare, pay absolutely no taxes. 

The big foundations, promoting radical left-wing activism, likewise pay no taxes. 

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As Biden Taps Elizabeth Warren Ally to Oversee Student Loans, Debate over Canceling Debt Looms Large

Elizabeth Warren

The Biden administration has chosen a close ally of Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) to oversee the nation’s expansive federal student loan program.

On Monday, Rich Cordray, director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau during the Obama administration, was announced as the new head of the Education Department’s Office of Federal Student Aid, which oversees over $1.7 trillion in loans to U.S. students.

In a statement following his appointment, Cordray said he sought to “create more pathways for students to graduate and get ahead, not be burdened by insurmountable debt.”

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Another Professor Indicted for Receiving Secret Support from China

A professor at Southern Illinois University received an indictment for concealing his support from the Chinese government.

According to a United States Department of Justice press release, Mingqing Xiao — who teaches mathematics at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale — “fraudulently obtained $151,099 in federal grant money from the National Science Foundation (NSF) by concealing support he was receiving from the Chinese government and a Chinese university.”

Accordingly, he was charged with two counts of wire fraud and one count of making a false statement. He faces the possibility of twenty-year sentences for each of the former, as well as a five-year sentence for the latter. All three charges are punishable by fines of up to $250,000 each.

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UK Universities Could End up Paying Students Back for Services Not Provided During COVID

College students in caps and gowns

Universities in the United Kingdom have been instructed to pay students thousands of dollars because they had ‘”less valuable” experiences due to the universities’ COVID-19 actions. 

The Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) is an independent body that reviews students’ complaints against higher education institutions. It does not have the power to regulate or punish the institutions, however.

OIA recently shared several complaints students have made about the impact coronavirus has had on their educational experiences.Universities in the United Kingdom have been instructed to pay students thousands of dollars because they had ‘”less valuable” experiences due to the universities’ COVID-19 actions. 

The Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) is an independent body that reviews students’ complaints against higher education institutions. It does not have the power to regulate or punish the institutions, however.

OIA recently shared several complaints students have made about the impact coronavirus has had on their educational experiences.

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Medical Journal Forces Out Editor Who Questioned ‘Structural Racism,’ Professors Rejoice

Edward Livingston

A leading medical journal terminated an editor who questioned the existence of structural racism. His fellow medical professors expressed approval of the firing.

The American Medical Association wrote in a statement that it was “deeply disturbed” and “angered” by a recent Journal of the American Medical Association podcast that “questioned the existence of structural racism.” Though the organization claimed that “JAMA has editorial independence from AMA,” the statement added that “this tweet and podcast are inconsistent with the policies and views of AMA.”

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West Chester University Implements Mandatory Diversity Training for All Employees

West Chester University in Pennsylvania has recently instituted mandatory diversity training for faculty and staff.

The required training would take place on the electronic platform EverFi, according to a memo sent to employees obtained by The College Fix.

Employees were notified that this program would serve to demonstrate the “mission, goals, values, and strategic plan” of the public university in ensuring an inclusive and welcoming work environment.

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University Abruptly Suspends Diversity Classes: ‘Students Have Been Humiliated and Degraded’

Amid rumors of a video that shows a student being targeted during a diversity lesson at Boise State University, administrators have abruptly suspended all of the school’s general education classes called “University Foundations 200: Foundations of Ethics and Diversity.”

“We have been made aware of a series of concerns, culminating in allegations that a student or students have been humiliated and degraded in class on our campus for their beliefs and values,” states a March 16 memo from President Marlene Tromp to the campus community.

“This is never acceptable; it is not what Boise State stands for; and we will not tolerate this behavior,” Tromp stated. “…Given the weight of cumulative concerns, we have determined that, effective immediately, we must suspend UF 200.”

She goes on to note that academic leadership will determine next steps “to ensure that everyone is still able to complete the course.”

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University of Wisconsin-Madison Student Government Votes to Double Ethnic Studies Graduation Requirement

Citing an increase in “bias” and “hate” on campus, the UW-Madison student government recently voted unanimously to double the ethnic studies requirement needed to graduate from three credits to six.

“UW-Madison is responsible for providing students with the knowledge to become more understanding and empathetic individuals,” Associated Students of Madison committee leaders said in a news release following the vote.

“Increasing the Ethnic Studies Requirement is a way to combat current systemic racism and encourage a dialogue around its history,” the group said.

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Commentary: Why Our Universities Have Failed

Where did Antifa youth rioting in the streets receive their intellectual and ethical bearings? Why are the First and Second Amendments no longer fully operative? How did the general population become nearly ignorant of their Constitution, history, and the hallmarks of their culture? Why do employers no longer equate a bachelor’s degree with competency in oral and written communications, basic computation, and reasoning? How in the 21st century did race and ethnicity come to define who we are rather than become incidental to our individual personas? In answering all these questions, we always seem to return to higher education – the font of much of our contemporary malaise.

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New Senate Legislation Targets Foreign Theft of US Research

A new bill looks to grant the government additional oversight on foreign access to U.S. research and intellectual property.

The legislation comes as a response to recent incidents of high-security concern which concern China’s relationship with the US, including Chinese programs that seek to recruit American scientists, and the widespread failure of U.S. universities to report foreign funding.

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Students Sue Harvard Citing ‘Subpar Online Learning Options’ During Coronavirus Pandemic

On Wednesday, students sued Harvard University for not refunding tuition and fees after the coronavirus pandemic forced classes online.

This makes Harvard at least the fourth Ivy League school to be targeted for failing to reimburse educational costs, following Brown, Columbia, and Cornell. The school is facing a $5 million federal class-action lawsuit.  Students chose to pursue legal action as a result of not having “received the benefit of in-person instruction or equivalent access to university facilities and services.” 

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Commentary: Rethinking University Dependence on Foreign Students

Were all of the foreign students returning to America’s campuses in January vectors of infection for coronavirus? Especially the students from China? There’s no evidence yet to prove the point, although the odds are that at least some coronavirus infection came to the United States from foreign students.

If we’ve been spared a campus plague, it’s owing to the grace of God, and not to any actions by our colleges and universities.

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George Mason University Professor Calls College a ‘Racket,’ Blasts Diversity Hires

An economics professor at George Mason University is speaking out about the “racket” that he says is college, and blaming it on the “diversity people” who he says have flooded the university system with unnecessary and perpetually increasing expenses tied to a seemingly endless need for more and more diversity initiatives and faculty.

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Ohio House Approves Criteria to Ease College Transfers, Grant Associate Degrees

  The Ohio House passed a bill to make transferring colleges easier, but not without first adding more details on the criteria for doing so. Substitute House Bill 9 also adds provisions for determining if students who have left school without a bachelor’s degree are eligible for an associate’s degree…

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Commentary: We Need a Higher Education Reformation

by Emina Melonic   American higher education, once the envy of the world, is suffering a crisis of confidence and a loss of purpose. “Once upon a time, universities were institutions dedicated to the pursuit of truth and the transmission of the highest values of our civilization,” writes New Criterion editor and publisher Roger…

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Ohio House Bill Aims to Streamline College Transfers, Help Students Graduate On Time

  A new bill in the Ohio House aims to make it easier for college students to transfer schools and graduate on time. State Reps. Don Jones (R-95) and Bride Rose Sweeney (D-14) are sponsors of House Bill 9, the Higher Education Degree Attainment Reform bill. They say it contains common…

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Commentary: The Fruits of College Indoctrination

by Walter E. Williams   Much of today’s incivility and contempt for personal liberty has its roots on college campuses, and most of the uncivil and contemptuous are people with college backgrounds. Let’s look at a few highly publicized recent examples of incivility and attacks on free speech. Senate Majority…

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Higher Education and the Threat of Fascism

by George Leef   In a recent essay published in The Chronicle of Higher Education, Yale philosophy professor Jason Stanley is haunted by a spectre—the spectre of American universities aiding the rise of fascism. (The essay, “Fascism and the University” is subscriber-only content, unfortunately.) He says that “patterns have emerged that suggest the resurgence…

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REPORT: Trump Administration Will End Obama Era Race-Based University Admission Practices

college students

The Trump administration is preparing to abolish policies that direct colleges and universities to increase diversity by considering race in college admissions, according to U.S. officials. Media reports say Trump administration officials intend to argue against guidelines issued by president Barack Obama’s administration that offered legal recommendations for schools seeking…

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