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Center for Freedom and
Western Civilization

The Center for Freedom and Western Civilization has been established at Colgate University as a forum for civic debate and scholarly research.
The Center seeks to enliven the intellectual discourse among students and faculty on campus by promoting a set of ideals that have their origins in Western civilization but are universal in scope and appeal. 

First and foremost is the ideal of classical liberal arts education - an education worthy of a free citizen and a free mind that is based on a rigorous and unflinching encounter with the ‘great books’ of the Western tradition. We believe that these books contain timeless wisdom about the good life and the nature of man and reality and should be at the core of a liberal arts education. 

Second, we believe in the ideals of free speech, free enterprise, and constitutional democracy, especially as they have been understood and established by the American founding fathers. The serious study of these ideals and institutions – from the time of the early American Republic to the contemporary world – is critical in educating citizens and leaders for today. The great debates surrounding the ideals of freedom and democracy need to be presented with respectful appreciation as well as with critical detachment. 
Third, we seek not only to feature these ideals in campus debates but also to foster their growth at home and abroad. Accordingly, we honor students whose projects make significant contributions to understanding freedom and Western civilization and to promoting them in their future careers. And we seek to cultivate the growth of free institutions in Afghanistan and Iraq and in other emerging democracies around the world.

George Will, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author, engages the Colgate audience.

Contact Information

Director: Bob Kraynak

Advisory Board: See here