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DePauw University joins multi-campus initiative to uphold free expression

DePauw University is joining an emerging effort to advance higher education’s pivotal role in preparing students to be engaged citizens and uphold free expression on university campuses nationwide.

College Presidents for Civic Preparedness logoAlongside 60 other college presidents from institutions across the country, President Lori S. White is partnering with College Presidents for Civic Preparedness, a unique consortium convened by the Institute for Citizens & Scholars in response to the urgent challenges currently facing American higher education and democracy. These presidents will take action at both a campus-specific and a collective level to cultivate a more vibrant and diverse society marked by civil discourse and critical inquiry.

As a member of the consortium’s Founder’s Circle, White’s participation in this endeavor underscores DePauw’s existing commitment to free expression. The university maintains that the heart of a liberal arts education is the free exchange of ideas, and the shared efforts of these presidents will help position DePauw to protect this exchange through education, dialogue, and democratic engagement.

Three shared Civic Commitments will guide the programs and activities implemented by the participating presidents:

  1. Educating for democracy is central to our mission.
  2. We will prepare our students for a vibrant, diverse, and contentious society.
  3. We will protect and defend free inquiry.

In order to ensure that these commitments remain central to the work of the universities represented, campuses will implement several types of campus-specific programming, including new courses, outside speakers, student orientations, presidential speeches, technology tools, and voter education initiatives. They will also meet regularly with one another for both collaboration and accountability.

Under the leadership of President White, DePauw remains committed to creating an environment where diverse perspectives are welcome, and where all community members are equipped to engage with one another in a spirit of authenticity and respect.

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