On-Line College Caters to Conservatives

By Billups, Andrea | The Washington Times (Washington, DC), December 5, 2000 | Go to article overview

On-Line College Caters to Conservatives


Billups, Andrea, The Washington Times (Washington, DC)


Students seeking a classical education focused on Western civilization and a philosophy of limited government may soon be able to take classes on line at the first Internet university geared toward conservatives.

Officials from the new cyber-college, named Yorktownuniversity.com after the final battle of the Revolutionary War, said they initially hope to raise $1.25 million from investors through sales of common stock needed to finance the higher education venture.

Their official initial public offering (IPO) was announced yesterday by the university's president and chief executive officer, Richard J. Bishirjian, who said his school is focused on providing an "unbiased" education to "the literally millions of American conservatives who feel disenfranchised by the uniformly and relentlessly liberal teachings of our colleges and universities."

"The demand is there, and the supply is short," said Mr. Bishirjian, a businessman, author and veteran educator who will teach classes in government at the on-line school.

"We believe conservatives will come to our site in search of an education that cannot be found elsewhere," he said.

Paul Weyrich, president of the Free Congress Foundation and chairman of the school's board of directors, said Yorktown's prospectus is available for view on the World Wide Web. Shares of stock cost $10 and will be sold without a brokerage house.

Mr. Weyrich said interest in the on-line university has been high from scholars and prospective students who are interested in a curriculum that focuses on the study of Western civilization, philosophy, and American and constitutional history - courses that he said have taken a back seat at most of the nation's colleges and universities.

That abandonment of a "core curriculum," noted Mr. Bishirjian, occurred during the 1960s and '70s, during the turbulent Vietnam War era.

"The result has been a general academic decline," he said. …

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