Campus Access Concerns

In the 2005 study 'Spiritual Life of College Students' by UCLA’s Higher Education Research Institute (HERI), many students said that they enrolled in college to find their life’s purpose and they expected their college education to help them with their emotional and spiritual development. Findings included:

  •   75% said they were “searching for meaning and purpose in life”
  •   67% said that it was important to them that their college "helps you develop your personal values"

Good CitizensThe 2014 HERI report does not specifically address those questions but it does show a continuing decline in religious identification. The 2014 report shows 27.5% of incoming freshman selected "none" for religious identification, compared with 15.4% in 1971. However, it also suggests that interest in spiritual issues is broader than interest in a particular religion.

InterVarsity has been an active ministry on college campuses for more than 70 years. In our experience, student interest in spirituality has never been higher. We believe that the presence on campus of an authentic Christian witness contributes to the kind of campus diversity that students expect from an institution of higher learning.

As good citizens on campus, we assert that Christian organizations should have the right to require their leaders to believe and follow the traditional Christian principles and goals of their organization based, in part, on the free exercise clause in the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and, in part, on simple logic. We believe our chapters contribute to a positive campus environment through volunteer activities and the high moral standards required of our student members.

However, on a number of campuses, we are facing challenges to our ability to be an authentic Christian organization.

Read about InterVarsity's current campus challenges.