Sep 082003
 
Authors: Jesse McLain

Recent statewide initiatives are attempting to balance what some organizations see as left-leaning college campuses.

“Higher education needs to be a place where students can receive all sides of an argument,” said Ryan Call, a student at Denver University of Law who is active in Students For Academic Freedom.

Governor Bill Owens, State Senate President John Andrews and the Colorado Commission on Higher Education are a few of the advocates pursuing a conservative balance.

According to a study posted on studentsforacademicfreedom.org, “The impression that conservative values and ideas aren’t welcome on campus is driven home daily to students until it becomes second nature.”

Some administrators however believe that in order to determine a balance certain basic principles would have to be violated for a problem that doesn’t even exist.

“It would require some very new and I think illegal procedures in our hiring practices. The candidate files have no information on political affiliation. I think our faculty reflects a pretty wide spectrum,” said Kathryn Hochstetler, associate professor in CSU’s political science department.

Suggestions for solutions to the balance are just in the beginning stages.

” Solution possibilities are still in the premature stages at this point. As a conservative myself I think quotas would not be a good solution. Maybe if we made committees more open to the public in general,” Call said.

Whether Democrats are just more likely to be interested in education remains a highly debated issue.

“If as a student there is a liberal bent on the whole education process it would be hard to go on in higher education as a conservative student. It would be hard to find a professor to assist with a thesis. They idea that Republicans aren’t interested in education because they are only interested in making money is much too simplistic. It does conservative students everywhere a disservice,” Call said.

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