We are pleased to announce that an alumni free speech group for the University of North Carolina has joined the Alliance. The UNC Free Speech Alliance joins five alumni free speech groups that were added as members in December. Those groups were from Lafayette, MIT, VMI, Wofford, and Yale. Since the announcement of the new Alumni Free Speech Alliance on October 18, we have been contacted by alumni from over 110 schools interested in forming alumni free speech groups for their schools. We anticipate that many more such groups will join the Alliance in coming months.
The Alliance brings together alumni groups that have a focus on supporting free speech, academic freedom, and viewpoint diversity at their colleges and universities. The founding members of the Alliance were alumni groups from Cornell University, Davidson College, Princeton University, the University of Virginia, and Washington & Lee University, but other alumni groups are steadily joining the cause. Members of the Alliance believe that free speech, academic freedom, and viewpoint diversity are critical to the advancement of knowledge and to very concept of a university. Yet surveys show most students at colleges and universities have little understanding of these principles. Most students oppose free speech. See, for example, the “2021 College Free Speech Ranking” published by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE). https://rankings.thefire.org.