A parent wrote to me last week asking for my honest assessment of my university. His reason for writing is that his son is enrolling at UNC-Wilmington in the fall. He directly asked whether I would send my own son to the university where I teach. He also asked some other pointed questions. I thought my answers would make an informative column for parents who are about to send their Christian children to secular universities like UNCW. So here goes. His unedited questions and my responses follow:
1. On a scale of 1 to 100 (1 = Hillsdale College and 100 = UNC Chapel Hill), how liberal would you say UNCW is? Why?
I would say 90. I know of several genuinely conservative professors here at UNCW. That is probably several more than at Chapel Hill. Regardless, most UNCW social science and humanities departments lack even one single conservative voice. So I would give UNCW an “F” on intellectual diversity as opposed to the “F-minus” I would give to UNC-Chapel Hill.
2. How supportive/antagonistic are the faculty at UNCW toward Christianity/Christians?
The support is almost entirely lacking and the antagonism is pervasive. There is, however, variation from one department to the next. Christian students just need to be careful in their selection of general studies requirements as well as general electives. Be very careful when taking courses in philosophy. Try to avoid English, Sociology, and Education altogether. If your son has any questions, send him to my office. I'll make sure he avoids the more outspoken anti-Christian professors.
3. How receptive/antagonistic are the students at UNCW of Christianity/Christians, i.e. are they open to discussing and considering it when engaged by a fellow student?
There is a small but growing Gaystapo on our campus. There are also some very militant feminist students. Two ways to avoid trouble are 1) to live off campus with like-minded roommates (the Resident Assistants, who are themselves students, sometimes facilitate censorship of religious opinions) and 2) avoid taking classes ending with the word "studies." These two measures alone will help avoid many of the more militant students.
4. If you had a son, would you encourage him to attend UNCW (of course, assuming it met his major, personal, etc . . . requirements)?