Fighting Political Interference in Higher Ed: Lessons Learned in Ohio and Texas

AAUP Presents:  Fighting Political Interference in Higher Ed:  Lessons Learned in Ohio and Texas


From Florida to Texas to Ohio to Indiana politicians in some states are trying to substitute their own ideological beliefs for educational freedom by passing legislation that interferes with how colleges and universities operate. They’re introducing bills that  mandate or prohibit content in the classroom, empower partisan political appointees to determine campus policy, limit the freedom to learn, teach, and conduct research.

In this episode we look at member-led efforts to fight legislative interference in Texas and Ohio, specifically pushing back against bills targeting diversity equity and inclusion programs, tenure, and collective bargaining. We talk about each campaigns successes, failures, and the lessons learned.

The guests are Karma R. Chávez, the Bobby and Sherri Patton Professor and Chair in the Department of Mexican American and Latina/o Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, where she also serves on the executive committee of the AAUP chapter, and Sara Kilpatrick, the AAUP Ohio Conference Executive Director. She previously worked as the political director for the Ohio Senate Democratic Caucus. The episode is hosted by Mariah Quinn, AAUP’s digital organizer.