University of Delaware

Location: Newark, Delaware
Type: Public
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Speech Code Rating

University of Delaware has been given the speech code rating Yellow. Yellow light colleges and universities are those institutions with at least one ambiguous policy that too easily encourages administrative abuse and arbitrary application. Read more
  • Sexual Misconduct Policy

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: March 13, 2019

    Sexual harassment means unwelcome verbal, nonverbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when: … such conduct is: sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter an individual’s working or academic conditions; creates a hostile or abusive working, living or academic environment; or is sufficiently severe or perva... Read More
  • Student Guide to University Policies: Code of Conduct- Discriminatory and Other Harassment

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: March 13, 2019

    Any verbal, written or physical conduct toward another that unreasonably creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive learning, living or working environment or unreasonably interferes with an individual’s academic or work performance is prohibited. Read More
  • Student Centers Policies: Speakers on Campus

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Security Fee Policies
    Last updated: March 13, 2019

    The costs of all necessary arrangements must be absorbed by the student organization. (The student organization is responsible for ensuring the safety of the speaker as well as those who listen, and the expense for such arrangements must be borne by the host group.) Read More
  • University Non-Discrimination Policy

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: March 13, 2019

    1. Discriminatory harassment refers to any unwelcome verbal or physical conduct toward another that is based on the other’s race, color, national origin, age, marital status, disability, religion, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law, and that such conduct is a) Sufficiently severe or pervasi... Read More
  • Faculty Handbook: Distribution of Published Materials on Campus

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: March 13, 2019

    Freedom of expression is absolutely essential to the life of the University. Read More
  • Biden: ‘We hurt ourselves badly when we don’t allow’ free speech on campus (VIDEO)

    October 17, 2017

    In remarks this afternoon at the University of Delaware, former Vice President Joe Biden urged college students to embrace free speech. Biden, a Democrat, joined John Kasich, the Republican governor of Ohio and former 2016 presidential candidate, for a special, bipartisan university event. The pair held a conversation in front of a sold-out crowd on ways “to… Read more

  • University of Delaware revises disciplinary policies, fails to offer adequate procedural safeguards

    August 30, 2017

    Many colleges and universities take the summer to review and revise their institutional policies, including their disciplinary procedures. Ideally, this process serves as an opportunity to afford students more clarity and greater protection against erroneous findings of misconduct. On Aug. 1, the University of Delaware released a new non-discrimination policy, and a month before that,… Read more

  • University of Delaware Response to Campus Police Gaffe: No Harm, No Foul

    May 10, 2016

    FIRE recently wrote a letter to University of Delaware (UD) Acting President Nancy Targett to inform her of an April 13 incident (above) in which a UD campus police officer directed students to censor speech that was clearly protected by the First Amendment. Targett wrote us a short response letter saying, in so many words, “That’s… Read more

  • University of Delaware Police to Students: Self-Censor ‘Free Speech Ball’

    April 15, 2016

    NEWARK, Del., April 15, 2016—Today, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) sent a letter to the University of Delaware (UD) voicing concerns about expressive rights on campus after a UD police officer confronted students on Wednesday and told them to self-censor a “free speech ball”—a large, plastic beach ball on which they encouraged… Read more

  • Former FIRE Intern: University of Delaware’s ‘Single Investigator Model’ is Bad for Students

    November 6, 2015

    This week’s issue of The Review, University of Delaware’s (UD’s) student paper, features an editorial by former FIRE intern Rachael Russell on the university’s adoption of a “single investigator model” for sexual misconduct investigations. In her editorial, Rachael looks at the threats to accused students’ due process rights that occur when one person is both… Read more

  • Due Process Duly Unavailable at UD

    July 24, 2015

    This month, the University of Delaware (UD) changed its sexual misconduct procedures from a full hearing to a one-on-one investigation by a “trained professional,” thereby becoming yet another school to adopt the problematic “single investigator model.” As part of this updated policy, UD’s Office of Equity and Inclusion has appointed two staff members as Title… Read more

  • How the Pressures of Title IX Compliance Have Chilled My College Campus

    June 26, 2015

    On my first day of class this past semester, like my previous three semesters at the University of Delaware (UD), I expected to attend my classes and be given syllabi with course expectations. I did not expect to have references to Title IX on my course syllabi, warning students that any reference to sexual misconduct… Read more

  • U. of Delaware Resists Potentially Chilling Records Request from Congressman

    March 25, 2015

    The University of Delaware (UD) was one of seven universities to which Arizona Congressman Raul M. Grijalva wrote last month, requesting information about and records relating to researchers who are skeptical about the existence or extent of man-made climate change. Citing concerns about academic freedom, UD acquiesced only to a narrow portion of Grijalva’s request…. Read more

  • Greg Reviews ‘The Upside of Your Dark Side’ in ‘The Huffington Post’

    January 28, 2015

    As FIRE President Greg Lukianoff writes in The Huffington Post today, last year was full of thought-provoking popular non-fiction, with one book standing out to him: The Upside of Your Dark Side: Why Being Your Whole Self—Not Just Your “Good” Self—Drives Success and Fulfillment by psychologists Todd Kashdan and Robert Biswas-Diener. The book focuses on… Read more

  • Clemson University Suspends Inquiry into Students’ Sex Lives

    September 18, 2014

    How many times have you had sex in the last three months? Just kidding—The Torch doesn’t want to know. But Clemson University did. Campus Reform’s Kaitlyn Schallhorn reported last night that the public South Carolina institution asked its students for this deeply personal information and other statistics of their sex lives as part of a… Read more

  • U. of Delaware Opts for Tobacco Policy That Won’t Hinder Researchers and Student Groups

    August 14, 2014

    Earlier this year, the University of Delaware (UD) considered a tobacco-free campus policy that contained a provision (PDF) that would have forbidden “[u]niversity programs, departments, and student organizations, including campus publications … from accepting money, advertising, and gifts from tobacco companies.” Thankfully, after a UD professor spoke up about the overly broad reach of this provision, the university dropped this language from the policy and implemented a version more respectful of free speech and academic freedom on August 1.

  • William Voegeli on the Purpose of College and the Fight for Free Speech

    June 25, 2013

    William Voegeli, senior editor of the Claremont Review of Books, wrote for Real Clear Politics yesterday to discuss the shift in why students go to college and how their focus hinders progress with respect to open and frank discussion on campus. He laments that for many young people, college is a means to an end;… Read more

  • U of Delaware Tries to Enforce Trademark Law Through Campus Courts

    December 14, 2012

    The annals of FIRE’s cases provide plenty of examples of universities doing a terrible job of adjudicating campus offenses from protesting, to rape to, er, saying things on Facebook that people don’t like. Now the University of Delaware, last seen giving George Orwell’s vision a run for its money, has a new job for its… Read more

  • Anti-Bullying Rule Threatens Free Speech at University of Delaware

    August 10, 2012

    NEWARK, Del., August 10, 2012—In violation of its legal and moral obligation to protect students’ First Amendment rights, the University of Delaware (UD) has adopted a prohibition on "bullying" that subjects students to punishment for constitutionally protected speech, including "teasing" or "ridiculing" other students.   "No one likes bullying, but most conduct that could be… Read more

  • Speech Code of the Month: University of Delaware

    August 10, 2012

    FIRE announces its Speech Code of the Month for August 2012: the University of Delaware (UD). UD’s Code of Conduct prohibits “bullying,” defined as Any deliberately hurtful behavior, usually repeated over time, with the desired outcome of frightening, intimidating, excluding or degrading a person. This includes, but is not limited to, physical assault, verbal abuse,… Read more

  • University of Delaware Reeducation Program’s Ringleader Becomes ACPA Vice President

    March 30, 2012

    When a university administrator egregiously violates someone’s rights, you might expect negative consequences. At Valdosta State University, for example, the president who expelled a student because of the student’s environmental activism not only took an earlier than expected retirement, but has also lost his qualified immunity in a federal lawsuit and is personally liable for… Read more

  • University of Delaware Celebrates Jan Blits’ Academic Freedom Award … But Why?

    February 18, 2011

    The University of Delaware has noted that University of Delaware professor and FIRE friend Jan Blits received the Jeane Jordan Kirkpatrick Academic Freedom Award last week at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) from Michael Grebe of the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation. If you only read the university’s announcement, however, you wouldn’t have any idea what… Read more

  • University of Delaware Professor Jan Blits Receives Jeane Jordan Kirkpatrick Academic Freedom Award

    February 11, 2011

    FIRE is pleased to announce that University of Delaware professor and FIRE friend Jan Blits will receive the Jeane Jordan Kirkpatrick Academic Freedom Award tonight at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) from Michael Grebe of the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation. The $10,000 award is given annually to a person who has been outstanding… Read more

  • Resolutions to Protect Academic Freedom of Faculty at UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Delaware

    November 19, 2010

    Faculty bodies around the country have been enacting new academic freedom protections in the wake of the Supreme Court’s 2006 decision in Garcetti v. Ceballos, about which we have written plenty here on The Torch. In a footnote in Garcetti, the Court reserved the question of whether professors at public universities have academic freedom to criticize university policies or even enjoy… Read more

  • FIRE’s University of Delaware Video Exceeds 100,000 Views

    October 29, 2010

    FIRE’s smash hit video Think What We Think…Or Else: Thought Control on the American Campus has now reached more than 100,000 views on YouTube, making it our most popular video. The short film exposes the University of Delaware’s (now almost completely obsolete) ideological reeducation program aimed at coercing the approximately 7,000 students in Delaware’s residence halls… Read more

  • University of Delaware General Counsel Gets Confused about the Supreme Court and Free Speech

    June 15, 2010

    Say what you will about the University of Delaware’s many free speech problems over the years, but the university almost always comes around (eventually) when confronted with the fact that it has violated the First Amendment. Sometimes it takes a lawsuit or extensive public outrage, but much of the time a letter will suffice. Thus, I… Read more

  • Delaware Professor: University Corporatization Can Lead to Indoctrination

    January 29, 2010

    Indoctrination, which aims to mandate students’ views rather than stimulate students to think through those views for themselves, is anathema to a liberal education. Yet, a recently published article by Jan Blits, one of the professors who alerted FIRE to the University of Delaware’s now infamous (and unconstitutional) Residence Life program, exposes how college administrators are… Read more

  • University of Delaware Residence Life Case Featured in New AAUP E-Journal

    January 28, 2010

    FIRE’s highly publicized case at the University of Delaware, where Residence Life officials implemented a harrowing ideological re-education program for all 7,000 students in the residence halls, has gotten even more publicity lately in an excellent essay (PDF) by University of Delaware professor Jan Blits. Writing for the American Association of University Professors’ (AAUP’s) new… Read more

  • FIRE’s Work at Minnesota Highlighted in Minneapolis ‘Star Tribune’

    December 14, 2009

    Katherine Kersten of the Minneapolis Star Tribune, who originally broke the story of the University of Minnesota’s proposals to add ideological and political litmus tests to its teacher education process, has authored a fantastic article about FIRE’s involvement in the case. Kersten compares Minnesota’s proposal to the thought reform program at the University of Delaware… Read more

  • This Month in FIRE History: University of Delaware Requires Students to Undergo Ideological Re-Education

    November 30, 2009

    Two years ago this month, FIRE celebrated one of the greatest victories in our 10-year history, dismantling the massive ideological reeducation program at the University of Delaware. FIRE was first contacted in the fall of 2007 by a parent of a student at UD who was concerned about the program. Referred to as a “treatment”… Read more

  • University of Delaware: Residence Life Curriculum Vote Today

    October 5, 2009

    This afternoon, the University of Delaware Faculty Senate will finally vote on this year’s educational plan in the residence halls at the university. The key change in the documents since they were last seen by the Faculty Senate in the spring is that, like last year, almost everything will explicitly be optional: With the exception… Read more

  • University of Delaware ResLife Program to Remain Optional, Despite ‘Mistake’

    September 16, 2009

    Here’s the latest in FIRE’s ongoing reporting on the University of Delaware’s educational program operated by the Office of Residence Life. You can get oriented to this appalling case by watching this video or reading this article. The program, which rose to national attention and criticism two years ago, had the stated goal of getting the approximately 7,000 students in Delaware’s… Read more

  • How He Did it: The Basis for Adam’s EWA Award-Winning Article

    July 7, 2009

    FIRE’s Adam Kissel was among the first-prize winners of the National Education Writers Association (EWA) 2008 National Awards for Education Reporting. Following the announcement this past spring, EWA collected narratives from several of the authors, in which they discuss how they came across and developed the source material for their prize-winning articles. The end result,… Read more

  • University of Delaware ResLife Plan for 2009-10: Still Optional, or Not?

    May 21, 2009

    One of FIRE’s most significant cases in our history has been at the University of Delaware, where early in 2007–2008 the Residence Life staff promulgated a thorough, mandatory curriculum in the residence halls that was designed to change students’ thoughts, values, attitudes, beliefs, and actions to conform to a highly specific political and social agenda…. Read more

  • Rights in the News: FIRE’s Thought Reform Efforts Continue to Resonate

    May 1, 2009

    It seems like every week we’re reporting that FIRE’s short film on the University of Delaware’s experiment in thought reform has doubled the amount of views received on YouTube from the week before—a trend I’m all too happy to continue. This week the folks at Reason (which—throwback!—published Alan Charles Kors’ article "Thought Reform 101" back… Read more

  • FIRE’s Adam Kissel to be Honored by Education Writers Association This Weekend

    May 1, 2009

    This weekend Adam Kissel, Director of FIRE’s Individual Rights Defense Program, will be honored in Washington, D.C. at the Education Writers Association’s National Seminar. As we proudly announced earlier this spring, Adam won a First Prize award in the Magazines category of the EWA’s 2008 National Awards for Education Reporting for his article "Thought Reform… Read more

  • Robert Discusses Virginia Tech and UD Reslife Program on Pajamas Media Blog

    April 28, 2009

    In his first blog for Pajamas Media, FIRE Vice President Robert Shibley discusses our recent victory at Virginia Tech and our latest video on the now-abandoned UD Reslife program. On Virginia Tech, Robert writes: Unfortunately, on campuses across the country, the line between indoctrination and education is being blurred and ignored on a daily basis…. Read more

  • Greg in ‘Huffington Post’ on the Campus Culture Wars

    April 22, 2009

    In his latest column for The Huffington Post, FIRE President Greg Lukianoff reflects on the campus culture wars with reference to two of our most famous cases: Hayden Barnes’ expulsion for a collage at Valdosta State University and the University of Delaware‘s former Residence Life program. Discussing the cases side by side, Greg demonstrates how… Read more

  • FIRE’s Video on UD Grabs #15 Most-Watched Nonprofit Video Spot

    April 20, 2009

    FIRE’s video on the University of Delaware‘s former residence life program continues to gain momentum on YouTube with over 24,000 views, earning FIRE’s channel the #15 most-watched nonprofit spot. The video, Think What We Think…Or Else: Thought Control on the American Campus, documents the ideological re-education program that FIRE exposed and helped end in the… Read more

  • FIRE Continues to Educate Public with its Video on UD Reslife

    April 13, 2009

    Earlier this month, FIRE announced a new video on the residential life program at the University of Delaware. The video, entitled Think What We Think… Or Else: Thought Control on the American Campus, describes in great detail the infamous program that FIRE exposed and helped end in the fall of 2007. As many of our… Read more

  • Video: ‘Think What We Think… Or Else: Thought Control on the American Campus’

    April 2, 2009

    Today, FIRE releases a new documentary entitled Think What We Think… Or Else: Thought Control on the American Campus. Produced by FIRE and Free to Choose Media, the video explains the University of Delaware’s Office of Residence Life’s invasive thought-reform program and features personal interviews with FIRE staff and UD students and faculty involved in… Read more

  • Think What We Think…Or Else: Thought Control on the American Campus

    April 2, 2009

    In the fall of 2007, the University of Delaware’s Office of Residence Life employed mandatory dormitory activities to coerce students to change their thoughts, habits, and values to conform to a highly specified ideological agenda. Following FIRE’s campaign, which called the attention of the national media to the Orwellian program and outraged people from all… Read more

  • Orientation or Indoctrination? The University of Delaware’s Troubling Residential Life Program and Trustee Responsibility

    March 20, 2009

    The University of Delaware’s Troubling Residential Life Program and Trustee Responsibility. http://www.youtube.com/goacta  

  • Rights in the News: Harvey’s Harvard Candidacy Continues to Grab Headlines

    February 27, 2009

    As April’s election for Harvard University’s Board of Overseers draws nearer, the candidacy of FIRE co-founder and chairman Harvey Silverglate continues to attract attention and enthusiasm. Scot Lehigh’s excellent column in The Boston Globe is just the latest testament to this, as Adam wrote earlier for The Torch (and as the Cato Institute’s Cato @… Read more

  • A Student’s Compelling Account of Delaware’s Mandatory Diversity Training

    February 26, 2009

    Remember the University of Delaware’s mandatory activity on stereotypes, when students were required to write down all the stereotypes they could think of about a dozen different groups of people? Today the National Association of Scholars has posted an eye-opening account of the Spring 2007 version of this exercise by student Bill Rivers. Here are… Read more

  • University of Delaware Releases Results of Residence Life Survey

    February 24, 2009

    The University of Delaware has released the results of three of the questions on a survey about this year’s Residence Life program. Regular Torch readers will remember that last year’s program, before it was suspended, involved major violations of students’ rights to privacy, freedom of conscience, and freedom of speech. The survey asked students about… Read more

  • Rights in the News: FIRE’s Letter to Obama Hopes to Inaugurate New Era for Speech on Campus

    January 23, 2009

    This past Tuesday, which saw the inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States, FIRE sent President Obama a letter detailing the violations pervading America’s higher education system, and requesting that the President and his administration join the fight against unconstitutional speech policies that threaten the liberties of millions of students…. Read more

  • Weekly Media Round-Up: Quick Victory at Binghamton Keeps FIRE Looming Large

    November 21, 2008

    It’s a good day when FIRE is able to declare victory in a nasty dispute before the waves of attention generated by our initial involvement have had time to settle. Such was the case with Binghamton University’s (BU’s) Department of Social Work, which dropped its investigation of graduate student Andre Massena within a day of… Read more

  • Citing University of Delaware Case, UGA Student Calls For Respect of Students’ Rights in Dorm Life

    November 19, 2008

    University of Georgia (UGA) student Chris Chiego published an op-ed in today’s edition of The Red and Black, UGA’s student newspaper, describing a number of issues that have occurred within the university’s residential life program. Recently, an entire floor of a dorm at the university was fined as a result of vandalism in a shared… Read more

  • Weekly Media Round-up: Victory at Temple College Highlights FIRE’s Week

    November 7, 2008

    FIRE scored another victory for free speech and academic freedom this week with its successful intervention on behalf of Kerry Laird, an instructor at Temple College (TX) who was ordered to remove a religiously themed cartoon and a quote from Friedrich Nietzsche translating to "God is dead" from his office door. Within half an hour… Read more

  • Weekly Media Round-up: National Media Takes Quinnipiac to School, With FIRE’s Help

    October 31, 2008

    The national media has officially descended on Quinnipiac University (QU), with FIRE’s early efforts to end the injustices visited on the Quad News and the QU chapter of the Society for Professional Journalists (SPJ) helping to pave the way. FIRE’s press release issued Wednesday helped to bring a new wave of attention to QU’s shoddy… Read more

  • FIRE Launches New Journal, ‘The Lantern,’ on Anniversary of University of Delaware Thought Reform Case

    October 31, 2008

    FIRE is proud to announce the forthcoming debut of The Lantern: The Journal of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, FIRE’s newest publication. The first issue of The Lantern will feature a comprehensive article on the indoctrination program implemented in 2007 by the University of Delaware’s Office of Residence Life, which used mandatory activities… Read more

  • Please Report to Your Resident Assistant to Discuss Your Sexual Identity—It’s Mandatory! Thought Reform at the University of Delaware

    October 31, 2008

    A female freshman arrives for her mandatory one-on-one session in her male RA’s dorm room. It is 8:00 p.m. Classes have been in session for about a week. The resident assistant hands her a questionnaire. He tells her it is “a little questionnaire to help [you] and all the other residents relate to the curriculum.”… Read more

  • Please Report to Your Resident Assistant to Discuss Your Sexual Identity–It’s Mandatory!

    October 30, 2008

    A female freshman arrives for her mandatory one-on-one session in her male RA’s dorm room. It is 8:00 p.m. Classes have been in session for about a week. The resident assistant hands her a questionnaire. He tells her it is “a little questionnaire to help [you] and all the other residents relate to the curriculum.”… Read more

  • Weekly Media Round-up: FIRE’s Defense of Satire and Political Expression on Full Display

    October 24, 2008

    Earlier this week, FIRE blogged and issued a press release about Lone Star College–Tomball’s threats against the school’s Young Conservatives of Texas (YCT) chapter for distributing a satirical and entirely protected "gun-safety" flyer. After pointing out the college’s exploitation of the tragedies at Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois as a way to silence protected speech,… Read more

  • Weekly Media Round-up: FIRE’s Expertise Widely Cited, and Pressure Grows on Brandeis and Third Circuit Schools

    October 3, 2008

    Today’s Chicago Tribune featured an article examining the widening controversy over restrictions on political speech and activity at the University of Illinois, which go so far as to suggest that displaying a candidate’s bumper sticker on one’s car is out of bounds. FIRE is closely monitoring this case, as well as a similar situation at… Read more

  • Weekly Media Round-up: Two Major Free Speech Victories Start the Year on a High Note

    September 19, 2008

    FIRE declared a pair of major victories for free speech this week in what we hope will set the tone for our efforts on campus during the 2008–2009 academic year. Valdosta State University (VSU), under the leadership of new president Patrick Schloss, revoked its unconstitutional free speech zone policy and made the VSU campus much… Read more

  • Another Victory for Free Speech at University of Delaware

    September 16, 2008

    University of Delaware (UD) administrators unconstitutionally denied students the right to pass out a new student newspaper, The LampLighter, without prior approval earlier this month. But as today’s press release describes, after FIRE pointed out the constitutional infirmities in both UD’s policy and the false characterization of this policy by administrators, UD has changed course… Read more

  • Victory for Free Speech at University of Delaware

    September 16, 2008

    PHILADELPHIA, September 16, 2008—After unconstitutionally denying students the right to pass out a student newspaper without prior approval, the University of Delaware (UD) has changed course and restored the rights of free expression and freedom of the press on its campus. The policy change came in response to a letter from the Foundation for Individual… Read more

  • Victory for Free Speech in University of Delaware Lawsuit

    September 5, 2008

    Last year, we wrote about the case of University of Delaware student Maciej Murakowski, who was barred from his classes and his dormitory pending a psychiatric examination because of material on his website that another student found offensive and which university officials found "racist, sexist, anti-Semitic, and homophobic." Murakowski soon was suspended and banned from… Read more

  • University of Delaware Strains Promise of ResLife Oversight

    August 28, 2008

    After the University of Delaware had to retreat from its coercive thought reform curriculum in the residence halls, Vice President for Student Life Michael Gilbert promised the faculty and trustees that this year’s program would be closely monitored by a new Assistant Vice President for Student Life. The faculty and trustees approved the new, only… Read more

  • University of Delaware Residence Life Program Discussed at LA Conference

    June 30, 2008

    On June 15–16, FIRE’s Adam Kissel attended an international conference on How Free is the University? in Los Angeles, CA, which was keynoted by Victor Davis Hanson. On June 15, Adam spoke on the panel “Indoctrination: When does professorial opinion cross the line from personal conviction into propaganda?” The panel discussed indoctrination, ideology, and intimidation… Read more

  • Episode 131: Adam Kissel at the “How Free is the University” Conference

    June 18, 2008

    On June 15-16, FIRE’s Adam Kissel attended an international conference on How Free is the University? in Los Angeles, CA, which was keynoted by Victor Davis Hanson. On June 15, Adam spoke on the panel “Indoctrination: When does professorial opinion cross the line from personal conviction into propaganda?” The panel discussed indoctrination, ideology, and intimidation… Read more

  • University of Delaware Passes ResLife Admin Costs to Students

    May 22, 2008

    The University of Delaware has promised a great deal more oversight over the Office of Residence Life as it implements its controversial 2008-2009 educational program for students in the residence halls in the wake of last year’s version of the program, which required students to undergo ideological reeducation. One of the promises of oversight is… Read more

  • ACTA Warns on Freedom of Conscience at Delaware

    May 21, 2008

    After the University of Delaware Board of Trustees voted to approve a new Residence Life educational program for next year, FIRE rightly reported it as a new victory for freedom of conscience. At the same time, The American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA) rightly characterized the news as a new failure for freedom of… Read more

  • New Victory for Freedom of Conscience at University of Delaware

    May 20, 2008

    The University of Delaware Board of Trustees confronted Vice President for Student Life Michael Gilbert over the proposed Residence Life educational program for 2008–2009 before passing the proposal. According to accounts from three people who observed the meeting of the Board of Trustees, the tone of the meeting changed markedly when the Trustees turned to… Read more

  • University of Delaware Misrepresents ResLife Education Program to Trustees

    May 16, 2008

    On Monday, May 19, the Board of Trustees of the University of Delaware will be meeting to discuss, among other things, the Residence Life educational program proposal that was passed this Monday by the Faculty Senate. The Board of Trustees meeting is open to the public. In a letter to Board of Trustees Chairman Howard… Read more

  • U. of Delaware approves new diversity discussions for students

    May 13, 2008

    Six months after suspending its controversial dormitory-based diversity sessions, the University of Delaware has approved a plan to replace them with a new residence-life program. On Monday, Delaware’s Faculty Senate overwhelmingly voted in favor of the plan, which was designed to promote “citizenship” among students. The program’s activities, which are voluntary, would encourage students “to… Read more

  • Partial Victory for Freedom of Conscience

    May 13, 2008

    The University of Delaware Faculty Senate has passed along to the Board of Trustees a proposal for educational programming in the residence halls. The proposal, revised numerous times, now states explicitly that almost all programming (save the first building and floor meetings) will be optional, and Vice President Michael Gilbert promised the Faculty Senate that… Read more

  • University of Delaware ResLife Proposal Discussed in Latest Podcast

    May 12, 2008

    Today at 4 p.m. the Faculty Senate of the University of Delaware will vote on whether or not to allow the proposed Residence Life plan to proceed. FIRE has been monitoring this situation diligently and has devoted an episode of our podcasting series, FIREside Chats, to discussing the proposed plan. Listen as Adam Kissel, director… Read more

  • Episode 113: Residence Life Program Proposal at the University of Delaware

    May 12, 2008

    Today at 4 p.m. the Faculty Senate of the University of Delaware will vote on whether or not to allow the proposed Residence Life plan to proceed. FIRE has been monitoring this situation diligently and has devoted an episode of our podcasting series, FIREside Chats, to discussing the proposed plan. Listen as Adam Kissel, director… Read more

  • University of Delaware ResLife on YouTube

    May 9, 2008

    University of Delaware student Sean Holland posted this video about the ResLife controversy on YouTube. It is a poignant reminder of some of the worst aspects of last year’s thoroughly discredited indoctrination program.

  • More Delaware ResLife Materials Removed from Website

    May 9, 2008

    ResLife has removed more materials from its website, including pages such as this one: http://www.udel.edu/reslife/about/diversity.html Diversity Vision “The Office of Residence Life, within its offices and its residence halls, will become a place where diversity among people is recognized, valued and demonstrated. Racism, sexism, heterosexism, ageism, ableism and other behaviors and systems that empower some… Read more

  • ‘Progressive Democrat and Environmentalist’ Speaks Out Against Delaware Indoctrination

    May 9, 2008

    FIRE loves when students beautifully express the principles of individual rights. We recently saw a copy of a great letter that University of Delaware student Alyssa Koser, a self-described “progressive democrat and environmentalist,” sent to the officers of Students for the Environment (S4E). She eloquently expresses the difference between supporting an agenda and foisting it… Read more

  • Delaware ResLife Fighting for Every Inch: Proposal Re-re-re-revised

    May 9, 2008

    Fifth time the charm? The University of Delaware Residence Life proposal has been revised yet again, but its essential elements remain the same. The proposal still tries to change students’ “thoughts, values, beliefs, and actions.” It still is an educational program with “learning outcomes.” It maintains the RA “conversations.” It maintains highly politicized and highly… Read more

  • Prediction by University of Delaware RA Comes to Pass

    May 8, 2008

    When the 2007-2008 University of Delaware Residence Life indoctrination program became the subject of withering public attention before it was quickly “suspended” by its president, FIRE received dozens of emails from students and RAs about ResLife’s coercive administration of the program. I am amazed that senior administrators still seem willing to trust ResLife to administer… Read more

  • Victory for Freedom of Conscience at University of Delaware; More Debate Ahead

    May 6, 2008

    FIRE is very pleased that the University of Delaware Faculty Senate has delayed a vote on the deeply flawed Residence Life proposal for next year, as I requested. The campus now has a bit less than a week to genuinely debate it. I hope that sincere debate ensues and that Faculty Senate leaders and upper-level… Read more

  • Open Letter to University of Delaware Faculty on ResLife Proposal

    May 5, 2008

    This afternoon, the University of Delaware Faculty Senate is to vote on (or table till another time) a proposal for what I have described as another indoctrination program using evidence directly from the proposal. I have sent an open letter to the UD faculty via the Faculty Senate in advance of the meeting. The text… Read more

  • Delaware ResLife Hides Another Document

    May 2, 2008

    Following the attention given by the Delaware Association of Scholars to the University of Delaware Residence Life position called “Graduate Assistant for Diversity Initiatives,” the university has removed the job description from its website. Fortunately, we have an archived copy here. The position’s responsibilities include(d) “Resource Development,” which include(d) the following: Serve as a resource… Read more

  • University of Delaware ResLife Misappropriates UD Environmental Sustainability Initiative for Social Activism

    May 2, 2008

    On May 5, the University of Delaware Faculty Senate is scheduled to vote on a fundamentally flawed, possibly illegal indoctrination program in the UD residence halls for next year. As I wrote earlier this week, the plan should be rejected. This is because the program hinges almost entirely on a highly politicized “sustainability” education agenda,… Read more

  • Delaware Association of Scholars Urges Rejection of UD ResLife Proposal

    May 1, 2008

    Joining FIRE, the Delaware Association of Scholars (DAS) has called on the University of Delaware Faculty Senate to reject the Residence Life proposal that is to be voted on during its May 5 meeting. Since the DAS makes a few points not already present in my analysis here, we reproduce the release in full here.

  • Sustainability All the Time: An Analysis of University of Delaware’s ResLife Proposal

    May 1, 2008

    As I wrote yesterday, the University of Delaware Faculty Senate is poised to restore the highly politicized indoctrination program that was roundly condemned last year, even by the faculty themselves. But the Faculty Senate should reject it. I analyze the overall program goals, the seven “learning outcomes,” the many ways that ResLife proposes to shape… Read more

  • University of Delaware Set to Restore Indoctrination Program

    April 30, 2008

    With minimal announcement, minimal student input, and hardly six days available for debate, the Faculty Senate at the University of Delaware has finally posted a new Residence Life proposal—and as expected, it is all about indoctrination into a highly politicized agenda. The Faculty Senate should reject it at its May 5th meeting. The program still… Read more

  • The worst campus codeword

    April 29, 2008

    The academic left is fond of buzzwords that sound harmless but function in a highly ideological way. Many schools of education and social work require students to have a good “disposition.” In practice this means that conservatives need not apply, as highly publicized attempts to penalize right-wing students at Brooklyn College and Washington State University… Read more

  • Delaware ResLife–Fourth Time the Charm?

    April 15, 2008

    On the front page of its Local section, today’s Delaware News Journal reports the latest in the ongoing saga of the University of Delaware Residence Life program. (The News Journal recently blasted UD for failing to repudiate the worst aspects of the program.) Yesterday evening, a group of student leaders and the Student Senate met… Read more

  • University of Delaware Retreats on Oppressive Speech Code

    April 14, 2008

    The University of Delaware has revised a speech code that used to classify “[a]ny instance that is perceived by those involved as being racist, sexist, anti-Semitic, homophobic, or otherwise oppressive” as an emergency equal to fire, suicide attempts, and alcohol overdose. This code was blatantly unconstitutional and about as absurd as you can get in… Read more

  • FIRE Board of Advisors Member Blasts University of Delaware

    April 9, 2008

    FIRE Board of Advisors member Candace de Russy wrote a scathing piece for Pajamas Media today on FIRE’s case at the University of Delaware. She notes that instead of doing away with the dreadful Residence Life program altogether, the university simply prescribed superficial reform and allowed the Residence Life staff—bewilderingly, still employed—to carry on as… Read more

  • National Organizations Keep Hitting U. Delaware Indoctrination Program

    March 28, 2008

    Five months after FIRE exposed the University of Delaware’s now thoroughly discredited residential indoctrination program, FIRE and other national organizations continue to keep the University of Delaware high on our agendas. The National Association of Scholars (NAS) has reached a turning point in presenting Part 9 of an ongoing series of investigative reports titled “How… Read more

  • Delaware News Journal Calls for Total Repudiation of University of Delaware’s Thought Reform Program

    March 24, 2008

    Check out the powerful editorial ‘UD should outright repudiate student indoctrination efforts‘ in Sunday’s Delaware News Journal. The News Journal‘s continuing attention to this issue is especially crucial because it is clear from reports that the University of Delaware’s Residence Life officials do not understand that they have done anything wrong. My own experience, speaking… Read more

  • University of Delaware ResLife Controversy Continues

    March 21, 2008

    In today’s Delaware News Journal—the leading Delaware newspaper—Beth Miller reports on the ongoing controversy over the University of Delaware’s residential program for undergraduates, which was largely cancelled last year for its attempts to indoctrinate students with a highly politicized ideology. As Miller reports, some students said they were uncomfortable in some discussions and were forced… Read more

  • University of Delaware Faculty Condemns Old ResLife Program

    March 19, 2008

    The University of Delaware’s Student Life Committee, which recently rejected a proposal for a highly politicized residential program in the dorms next year, has also roundly condemned the old program in a February 22 report. For those who have not yet heard of the discontinued and discredited program, please follow the links above. Here is… Read more

  • FIRE Op-Ed in University of Delaware Student Paper

    March 18, 2008

    Adam Kissel, director of FIRE’s Individual Rights Defense Program, has an editorial published in the University of Delaware’s student newspaper, the Review. In it, he calls for the student body to be aware of Residence Life’s “sustainability” program, writing that, Documents written or promoted by Residence Life officials demonstrate that sustainability is a highly politicized,… Read more

  • ResLife Indoctrinators Attack FIRE at Closed Conference

    March 4, 2008

    Leaders of the notorious indoctrination programs in college residence halls, bent on their highly politicized “sustainability” ideology, have hit a new low. As the National Association of Scholars (NAS) has reported, officials at a closed conference sponsored by University of Delaware’s Residence Life directors have resorted to name-calling and lies in order to attack FIRE… Read more

  • University of Delaware Rejects New Residence Life Proposal

    February 19, 2008

    The University of Delaware (UD) Faculty Senate’s Student Life Committee has rejected a proposal from the Office of Residence Life to run a new residential program in the Delaware dorms next year. Reports from inside UD suggest that Residence Life (ResLife) officials are entirely unrepentant, believing that their only mistake (now admitted, it seems) was… Read more

  • University of Delaware Sets Politicized Agenda for Resident Assistants

    February 19, 2008

    Despite outrage from the national media, students, and civil libertarians, indoctrination still seems to be the goal of the University of Delaware Residence Life staff. The latest call for resident assistants at the University of Delaware has been issued, and the materials show an unrelenting effort to push a political agenda through the RAs to… Read more

  • More Reflections on University of Delaware Indoctrination Program

    January 31, 2008

    This week, Thomas Wood continues his series for the National Association of Scholars on “How Many Delawares?” with “Res Life and the Decline of Campus Community (Part I).” Wood makes a startling observation about the explosion of college “residence life” officials—more and more of whom, I suspect, have the job of promoting and enforcing “community… Read more

  • Looking Back at the University of Delaware

    December 24, 2007

    When FIRE first heard reports of a mandatory thought reform program at the University of Delaware (UD) this fall, we began an investigation that led to our exposing a deeply disturbing attempt at ideological reeducation—right in the residence halls of a public university in America. The buzzword du jour used to describe the UD program… Read more

  • Psychotherapy in the Delaware Dorms

    December 13, 2007

    Tom Wood at the National Association of Scholars has begun a series of articles on the notorious Residence Life program at the University of Delaware, under the title “Tracking Down Indoctrination.” In the second article in the series, “Psychotherapeutic Interventions, Transformative Learning, and the Dorms of U Delaware,” Wood makes a good observation about the… Read more

  • University of Wisconsin’s Bias Reporting System Went Out with a Whimper, But Anonymous Bias Reporting Systems Remain

    November 29, 2007

    An article in The American Thinker mentions FIRE’s victory at the University of Delaware, where an egregious thought reform program was shut down after FIRE’s publicity campaign. The article highlights “Think Respect,” a “bias reporting mechanism” at the University of Wisconsin whereby students were encouraged to “report anything” that could possibly be construed as bias-related…. Read more

  • John Leo and Don Downs on the University of Delaware Case

    November 27, 2007

    There has been a lot of great coverage of the University of Delaware case, but I want to draw special attention to two important articles over at Minding the Campus. First is Don Downs’ article, which asks, “Where Was The Faculty?” In his article Don explores the role of administrators in creating the program and the complicity… Read more

  • Taking My Licks at the University of Delaware

    November 20, 2007

    Last night I realized that I have had it pretty easy all these years speaking on college campuses as a First Amendment advocate. After dozens of speeches at dozens of colleges, I’ve come to expect low to moderate turnout. Those who show up largely support free speech even if it’s controversial (at least in theory),… Read more

  • More Thought Reform Documents from the University of Delaware

    November 16, 2007

    Readers of The Torch who are interested in the University of Delaware thought-reform curriculum should keep checking our case materials for more documents. Students at the University of Delaware might be particularly interested in the full articulation of what Residence Life thought of them and how Residence Life wanted them to change. Each complex’s curriculum… Read more

  • U. of Delaware Story Hits Student Press

    November 9, 2007

    The college media has taken note of FIRE’s recent case at the University of Delaware. This morning, the University of Pennsylvania’s Daily Pennsylvanian ran a feature story on the controversy. And on Thursday, The Harvard Crimson ran a staff editorial critical of Delaware’s program. The Crimson staff wrote: This is not the stuff of cultural… Read more

  • Kaminer on University of Delaware: ‘Continuing Vigilance’ Necessary

    November 7, 2007

    Noted author, feminist, and civil libertarian Wendy Kaminer makes several excellent observations about FIRE’s recent victory at the University of Delaware (UD) on The Free For All, the blog she shares with FIRE co-founder Harvey Silverglate. Following up on her perceptive comments about the “un-American” qualities of UD’s reeducation program from last week, Kaminer sagely… Read more

  • John Leo: ‘Brainwashing 101’

    November 7, 2007

    Check out another great column by John Leo about the University of Delaware’s reeducation program.  John writes: Among the questions now being debated: why did President Harker merely suspend the program for the rest of the academic year, instead of quashing it entirely? And more basically, why should dormitories have their own curriculum? Possible answer:… Read more

  • Health Care Renewal Blog on U. of Delaware’s Thought Reform Program

    November 5, 2007

    Last week, FIRE CFN member and crusader against corruption in health care Roy M. Poses wrote a great analysis of the University of Delaware’s former reeducation program from the perspective of medical ethics: [T]his program seems to profoundly violate some fundamental values of health care and of human research. Except in very particular cases of… Read more

  • Media Documents Delaware’s Defense, Dismantling of Dorm Program

    November 5, 2007

    As Torch readers no doubt know by now, the University of Delaware announced the immediate suspension of its residence hall reeducation program this past Thursday. This stunning and much-welcomed development was due in large part to the extensive media coverage generated by FIRE’s efforts. Luke has covered the blogosphere’s reaction, but the traditional media is… Read more

  • Delaware: Residence Life Fighting Back?

    November 3, 2007

    FIRE expresses our deep appreciation to the University of Delaware (UD) faculty who provided vital support to our efforts to expose the unconscionable and unconstitutional residence life program at Delaware. We encourage faculty who know of similar programs at their own schools to let us know what is going on. We cannot stress enough the… Read more

  • Comprehensive Media Coverage Essential to FIRE Victory at the University of Delaware

    November 2, 2007

    Press coverage of the reeducation program at the University of Delaware (UD) has been astounding. Check out FIRE’s events page and look at the events over just the last few days. Yesterday, Greg appeared on CNN Headline News’ Glenn Beck show, FOX News Channel’s Hannity & Colmes, and this morning he was on America’s Newsroom…. Read more

  • Victory at University of Delaware

    November 2, 2007

    NEWARK, Del., November 2, 2007—After an intense campaign led by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), the University of Delaware has dropped an ideological reeducation program that was referred to in the university’s own materials as a “treatment” for students’ incorrect attitudes and beliefs. The program’s stated goal was for the approximately 7,000… Read more

  • Victory at University of Delaware

    November 1, 2007

    University President Ends Mandatory Ideological Reeducation Program NEWARK, Del., November 2, 2007—After an intense campaign led by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), the University of Delaware has dropped an ideological reeducation program that was referred to in the university’s own materials as a “treatment” for students’ incorrect attitudes and beliefs. The program’s… Read more

  • Victory at University of Delaware

    November 1, 2007

    Late Thursday, University of Delaware President Patrick Harker released on the school’s website a Message to the University of Delaware Community terminating the university’s ideological reeducation program, which FIRE condemned as an exercise in thought reform. He stated, “I have directed that the program be stopped immediately. No further activities under the current framework will… Read more

  • Delaware Starts Removing Materials from Web Site

    November 1, 2007

    The University of Delaware has removed its “Whole New World” training materials from its website—the materials that included the teachings about racism which we mentioned in our letter and press release about the case, and which have been roundly criticized by multiple bloggers (here’s one among many).  The materials used to be here.   For… Read more

  • FIRE Responds to Delaware’s Reply

    November 1, 2007

    FIRE is shocked and disappointed that the University of Delaware has chosen to defend its invasive and unconstitutional residence life education program. Our five-point response to Michael Gilbert’s reply to us is here. The evidence supporting our analysis is overwhelming, and we offer a few hundred pages of materials to those who want to see… Read more

  • Another Former Delaware RA Speaks Out

    November 1, 2007

    The Say Anything blog has posted another account from a former RA at Delaware that just adds to the huge volume of reaction that FIRE is getting from its exposure of the University of Delaware’s thought reform program. This former RA, Dan Lenker, begins:  I was also a Resident Assistant for the University of Delaware… Read more

  • University of Delaware, Thought Reform, and Widgets

    November 1, 2007

    Many students from the University of Delaware (UD) have contacted FIRE to express their outrage over the university’s reeducation program. Don’t worry, there is much you can do in addition to speaking out on campus. FIRE has assembled essential resources to aid active students, faculty members, and concerned citizens in their efforts to oppose campus… Read more

  • More Delaware Students and RAs Speak Out

    November 1, 2007

    We continue to get reports from the front, from University of Delaware students—and a former RA—who say that yes, the thought reform program really is this bad at the University of Delaware. These reports are in addition to the reports published earlier this week.    One former RA and current student is so scared of retribution… Read more

  • FIRE Response to Michael Gilbert, Vice President for Student Life, University of Delaware

    November 1, 2007

    FIRE is shocked and disappointed that the University of Delaware has chosen to defend its invasive and unconstitutional residence life education program. Rather than immediately renounce and dismantle what the university itself calls a “treatment” program for students living in its residence halls, the school has chosen instead to obfuscate, deny, and distort the program’s… Read more

  • The Delaware Approach: Coming Soon to a Campus Near You?

    October 31, 2007

    The University of Delaware’s senior residence life staff are so proud of their totalitarian approach to student “education” that they are hoping to export their model to educators from around the country.   In the November–December 2006 issue of About Campus—a magazine for college and university educators—UD Director of Residence Life Kathleen Kerr and Associate… Read more

  • Delaware Association of Scholars Denounces University of Delaware Reeducation Program

    October 31, 2007

    Yesterday, the Delaware Association of Scholars (DAS) joined FIRE in denouncing the egregious program of thought reform at the University of Delaware. Extreme by any measure, the program is an out-and-out assault on the individual liberty, dignity, privacy and autonomy of UD students. It is tyranny disguised as citizenship education. DAS makes the same point… Read more

  • Is the University of Delaware Violating the Federal Law on Human Subject Research?

    October 31, 2007

    A core part of the University of Delaware’s residential life program focuses on finding the most effective method for behavioral and thought reform. As covered in the FIRE press release, the University’s own research agenda, and previous posts, the University’s residential life program requires its students to undergo experimental thought-reform “treatments.” The University assesses and… Read more

  • Mike Adams on University of Delaware

    October 31, 2007

    Check out Mike Adams’ cutting rebuke of the University of Delaware’s comprehensive thought reform program: The University of Delaware has just become one of the most Orwellian campuses in America. Students in its residence halls are now being subjected to a re-education program that is actually dubbed—in the university’s own tax-payer funded materials—as “treatment” for… Read more

  • Hello, Darkness, My Old Friend: Thought Reform Makes Another Appearance

    October 30, 2007

    Showing stunning disregard for their students’ rights, the University of Delaware has been operating a mandatory “residence life education program” in its residence halls. The program, brazenly referred to by university administrators as a “treatment” designed to alter students’ interior beliefs as well as their outward conduct, requires all students living in the residence halls… Read more

  • University of Delaware: Students Speak Out

    October 30, 2007

    Students are speaking out against the University of Delaware thought-control program. (See today’s press release for more information.) One student writes: When I walked in for the one-on-one, I was handed a sheet of paper and asked to fill it out.  Even though I tried to explain that I didn’t feel comfortable filling out a sheet, I… Read more

  • Yes, Blue Hens, Your Reeducation Is Mandatory

    October 30, 2007

    At the University of Delaware (UD), as we announced in our press release today, reeducation in the residence halls is mandatory. As a freshman, unless you live at home, you must live in one of these dormitories-cum-reeducation camps. (1) Public and internal documents alike stress time and again that “every student” must be reached. As… Read more

  • University of Delaware Requires Students to Undergo Ideological Reeducation

    October 30, 2007

    NEWARK, Del., October 30, 2007—The University of Delaware subjects students in its residence halls to a shocking program of ideological reeducation that is referred to in the university’s own materials as a “treatment” for students’ incorrect attitudes and beliefs. The Orwellian program requires the approximately 7,000 students in Delaware’s residence halls to adopt highly specific… Read more

  • Student Sues University of Delaware

    August 2, 2007

    A University of Delaware student filed suit against the university on Wednesday, claiming the university violated his First Amendment rights. Administrators suspended and banned Maciej Murakowski from campus after students complained that a number of posts on his website were graphic, “racist, sexist, anti-Semitic, and homophobic.” He’s seeking reinstatement, credit for missed classes, and punitive… Read more

  • University of Delaware President Doesn’t Punish Students for Party

    May 18, 2007

    Students at the University of Delaware held a “south of the border” party where attendees dressed up like Hispanic gangsters and Latino gardeners wearing nametags with Latino names such “Pedro” and “Jose.” Campus outrage ensued. Several of the students involved have apologized.   University of Delaware President David Roselle released a statement on May 11… Read more

  • FIRE Co-Founder to Debate at the University of Delaware

    May 3, 2007

    Next week, FIRE co-founder Alan Charles Kors will debate William Galson, Professor Emeritus at the University of Maryland, on the topic, “Have Universities Become the Enemy of a Free Society?” The debate will take place on Tuesday, May 8, 2007, at 7:00 p.m. at the University of Delaware’s Trabant Theater.   Dr. Galson was formerly… Read more

  • Still Looking for Answers from Phi Beta Kappa

    December 14, 2005

    FIRE recently wrote a letter to John Churchill, secretary of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, in which we ask the organization to stand behind its stated commitment to freedom of expression by addressing the issue of repressive speech codes at its member institutions. In a recent article in The Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription required),… Read more