Essay Contest Winner

by Mahishan Gnanaseharan Suppose that a foreign university establishes an indoctrination program for its students. Imagine that this institution designs curricula to promote its own values and condemn ideas that are not supported by its government. Now assume that another university establishes a similar program. However, this “orientation session” forces students to answer intrusive questions in... Read more Read more


Essay Contest Winner

by Hadi Kateb “If the freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.” Although George Washington made this historic remark hundreds of years ago, it continues to have relevance to modern society. Institutions of higher education are pertinent to the growth and success of... Read more Read more


Essay Contest Winner

by Emily Snell In a 1909 speech, “The Meaning of a Liberal Education,” future president Woodrow Wilson described “the life of the present day” as “incalculably complex” and that “learning is correspondingly complex.” One hundred and five years later, life’s complexity has soared. With increasing globalization, all issues are interrelated and entangled. We have wars,... Read more Read more


Essay Contest Winner

by Arianna Samet When I think back on my favorite childhood memories, one immediately comes to mind, one that I will never forget. While attending a baseball game with my grandparents, we rose from our seats, along with tens of thousands of others in attendance, to sing the “Star Spangled Banner.” As the song ended... Read more Read more


Essay Contest Winner

This essay won third place in FIRE’s 2013 Essay Contest. By Emily Cox It is commonly thought that when someone goes to college, he is free from childhood constraints: free to eat what he wants, free to create his own schedule, and free to express his opinions without fear of retribution. However, college speech codes... Read more Read more


Essay Contest Winner

This essay won third place in FIRE’s 2013 Essay Contest. By James D.E. Ellwanger Back in 1965, five students from my public school district in Des Moines, Iowa, wore black armbands to class in order to protest the war in Vietnam. After they were suspended, a lawsuit was filed resulting in a landmark decision by... Read more Read more


Essay Contest Winner

This essay won third place in FIRE’s 2013 Essay Contest. By Justin Hunsaker In an era when political apathy and civic disengagement threaten to mitigate a new generation’s impact on its world, the actions of a young university student named Hayden Barnes would seem cause for praise. Concerned with his university’s imprudent allocation of student... Read more Read more


Essay Contest Winner

This essay won second place in FIRE’s 2013 Essay Contest. By Isabella Penola   Imagine yourself as a young adult, a hard-earned college acceptance letter in hand, your heart full of excitement and fervent expectation. Impatient to dive into the next four-or-so years of learning and educational exchange of ideas, you set off to your chosen... Read more Read more


Essay Contest Winner

This essay won first place in FIRE’s 2013 Essay Contest. By Kanitta Kulprathipanja *** ***** * **** * **** *** ** *** ***. * ******** *** ******* **** **** ******** ***** ** **** ** *** **** ** ** *** *******. Without the freedom of speech, this is what would remain of my essay if someone... Read more Read more


Essay Contest Winner

This essay won second place in FIRE’s 2012 Essay Contest. By Nora Faris You are a high school junior on your first college visit, eagerly sampling the campus culture—the dorms, the dining halls, the academic departments. You notice that the campus seems exceptionally quiet—well-manicured grounds, imposing buildings, and dedicated students walking purposefully between classes. However,... Read more Read more



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