Posts from the “Uncategorized” Category

Liberal Education as an End in Itself: Retrieving That Crazy Idea (Installment 2)

Posted on January 2, 2018

In the first part of this article, I highlighted the problem of turning higher education into merely a means to the end of economic success. In this second part, I focus on resources that can help academics send a more balanced message to the public about the value of higher education. In the 19th century, John Henry Newman famously and valiantly defended the ideal of knowledge for knowledge’s sake, education as its own end. He did so in his book The Idea of a University, a classic that ought to be required reading for those working in higher education today. Newman says of knowledge that it is “valuable for what its very presence in us does for us after the manner of a habit,…

Liberal Education as an End in Itself: Retrieving That Crazy Idea

Posted on November 30, 2017

Higher education has a marketing problem—one that is partly of its own making. We all know that the public relations situation of higher education is a mixed bag. On the one hand, the general public continues to believe in the value of higher education. A 2015 survey indicates that 95 percent of the population finds it “very important” or “somewhat important” that a person has a degree or other professional certification beyond high school.[1] A more recent survey from the civic enterprise organization New America shows that 75 percent of the American public agrees (strongly or somewhat) with the statement “It is easier to be successful with a college degree than without.”[2] That percentage goes up to 84 percent among Generation Z (those students…

What’s the Cost? Impacts of ‘Free Speech’ demonstrations on College Campuses

Posted on October 30, 2017

On October 28, 2017, the National Socialist Movement, the League of the South, Vanguard America, and the Traditionalist Worker Party, planned two events entitled “White Lives Matter” in Middle Tennessee, near the campus of Middle Tennessee State University.[1] These groups all participated in the Charlottesville, Virginia “Unite the Right” rally earlier this year, and because of the violence and racist ideology expressed at that event, members of the campus community were justifiably concerned.[2] These planned protests unquestionably impacted MTSU, and this article explores several aspects of the impact these protests had on campus. Of course, white supremacist action on or near university campuses is not new. Richard Spencer is currently on what he describes as a college tour, with stops at the University of…