College Cliffs recently listed PHC among the top 13 most conservative colleges in America, and here are four reasons why. We modeled our reasons off of criteria for a conservative college provided by College Cliffs.
1. Western-based core curriculum
PHC’s 63-credit core curriculum is among the country’s most extensive, and it contributes to the conservative atmosphere of the College. Subjects include Constitutional Law, Rhetoric, Theology, U.S. History, Western Civilization, Philosophy, Logic, Math, Science, Economics, Freedoms Foundations, and a foreign language. These classes equip students with a thorough knowledge of the history and philosophical principles that undergird Western civilization and teach students how to think and reason critically.
College Cliffs named PHC as a conservative college because, as evident in the core curriculum, PHC emphasizes fidelity to the spirit of the American founding and supports Western civilization and its traditions. For example, in the Freedom’s Foundations class, students study some of the most important thinkers—from Plato to C.S. Lewis—to lay the bedrock for political and religious liberty. PHC challenges students to think critically about these developments in Western philosophy and history.
2. Majors and minors interest those with a political bent
Many students are drawn to PHC because of our strong government curriculum and excellent internship opportunities. Graduates are known for the thoughtfulness and dedication they bring to government, national security, and law fields, and are valued interns at places like the White House, Capitol Hill, Homeland Security, CIA, FBI, and at well-known media companies and business corporations. PHC graduates have a 100% admittance rate into law school, and have excelled at top-tier institutions such as Yale, Columbia, and Harvard. The average LSAT scores from PHC students and graduates consistently rank among the highest in the nation. PHC has won 13 National Moot Court Championships and has had 5 alumni selected to clerk for the U.S. Supreme Court.
3. On-campus clubs and organizations
Despite being small, PHC provides opportunities to participate in student government, as well as an array of stellar student clubs and publications. Campus clubs include the International Justice Mission chapter, which works to fundraise and advocate for the ending of human trafficking; the Patrick Henry Investment Group, a student-led program that manages a college-owned stock portfolio; and the Pre-Law Society, which provides resources for students interested in law.
Student publications include the weekly Herald, distributed by journalism students; the George Wythe Review, a publication presenting student research on domestic policy issues; the Intelligencer, a publication presenting student research on issues of national security; and Aletheia, a publication of articles by students, alumni, and faculty promoting the "true, good, and beautiful." Students are eager to learn and make a difference, and they want to produce quality works at the undergraduate level.
4. Unwavering biblical worldview
Lastly, and most importantly, PHC has an unwavering commitment to a biblical worldview. Students, faculty, and staff are all required to sign a Statement of Faith, a statement which affirms: that there is one God who eternally exists in three Persons (the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), that the Bible in its entirety is inspired and wholly inerrant, that man is by nature sinful, and that salvation comes by grace alone through faith.
Moreover, PHC strives to teach students how to live spiritually disciplined lives in a few different ways. First, by hiring staff and faculty who love the Lord and model lives transformed by Christ. Second, by requiring attendance to thrice-a-week chapel services and twice-a-week wing chapels. Third, the biblical worldview informs every class. Learning to love the Lord well and walk lives reflective of the goodness of God is not an afterthought, it is the goal.
PHC is committed to its three distinctives:
These priorities shape the curriculum, the majors, the student-run clubs and publications, and the spiritual disciplines on campus.
Patrick Henry College exists to glorify God by challenging the status quo in higher education, lifting high both faith and reason within a rigorous academic environment; thereby preserving for posterity the ideals behind the "noble experiment in ordered liberty" that is the foundation of America.