Peace Students Protest Male Admission

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Students gathered outside William Peace University Monday to protest the admission of men to the female college.

It is one of 10 days that students and alumnae plan to protest the proposed change. College trustees announced the change in July, along with a new name: William Peace University. Men will be admitted to the school starting next fall.

Rachel Leigh House, 25, a student who will graduate in December, held a sign reading, “PEACE. I. AM not William!”

“The history, culture and tradition are wiped out,” House said.

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Glenda Kiddoo, a 1980 Peace graduate, held her dog, Dude, and the sign “Honk for Peace” as she waved at cars going by the front entrance. Kiddoo said she is disappointed that alumnae were left out of the conversation.

The students and alumnae who stood in front of Peace College all day Monday are hoping to emulate Mills College of California, whose students protested for two weeks eventually prompting an overturn of the decision to go coed.

6 thoughts on “Peace Students Protest Male Admission

  1. Did you even ask anyone at Peace about this – this looks a little one sided! And BTW – Mills College decided to stay all female because an alumna gave a huge check to keep it that way.

  2. Just wondering how many of these protestors were complaining when the all-male schools, such as Washington and Lee, started admitting women? Somehow there is a double standard that says all-female schools are “nurturing” while all-male schools are “patriarchal”?

  3. Some people have to be brought into the 20th century kicking and screaming, eh?

    Too bad it’s already the 21st….

  4. Just to inform, the protests have much less to do with admitting males and changing the name. One protest sign summed it up very nicely, “It’s not the guys, it’s the LIES”.

    I’ll throw some facts your way to hopefully educate you on the real issue at hand, which is an absence of institutional integrity and an administration given to totalitarian rule:
    – Within the first 10 days of Dr. Townsley’s administration, 11 staff were fired.
    – Within the first two months of her tenure, she offered ALL full-time faculty a buyout or early retirement and opined that it would be a good time for them to leave. She doesn’t believe in tenured faculty, but cheap, adjunct “instructors”.
    – She eliminated 7 of 17 majors.
    – She manufactured a financial and enrollment crisis to goad the board into either closing, merging, or differentiating in order to survive. Meanwhile, the school is not in financial distress (tax forms and the governmental audit of all private schools – in which Peace scored above Davidson, Wake Forest, Salem, and Meredith – bear out this truth).
    – She fired the Facilities Manager who holds an engineering degree from NC State and replaced him with her brother-in-law. As a result, the iconic fountain has lain in pieces on the front lawn all summer.
    – She has jeopardized the school’s Title IX funding with a wacky “we’ll have women’s classes and men’s classes, and some that are both” strategy that is clearly illegal.
    – She has banned alumnae from the campus (other than those who share her vision) and informed them through the Development Office that Peace essentially doesn’t need their money.
    – She made the announcement to go co-ed and change the institution’s name on July 21, without prior notice to returning or incoming students and their parents, and after their tuition checks were due.
    – She has rewritten the bylaws of the board, separated from the Presbyterian Church, fired the full-time chaplain, and eschewed the mission to teach liberal arts.
    – She has replaced the Dean of Admissions with a new VP of Enrollment that has no experience in traditional college recruiting, but instead hails from the for-profit college sector. Other moves within the board leadership and administration portend a move in the for-profit direction.
    – Three of the past presidents of Peace who led her successfully for the past 46 years have publicly condemned and deplored the actions of the board and administration.
    – Last Friday, the administration dropped the hammer on current students with a new public expression and assembly policy that threatens suspension, dismissal, and forfeit of tuition if a certain set of arcane rules for protest are not followed.

    This is just a sampling of some of the shenanigans that have taken place over the course of the year. . .the list is endless.

    I hope that you understand that we’re not a group of aging debutantes that have nothing better to do with our time between bunko and the Junior League. The majority of the protesters are professionals, business owners, lawyers, and accomplished women who, with real-world knowledge of business and ethical leadership, are disturbed and outraged at the systematic dismantling of this institution.

    Please dig beyond the surface before you judge. It’s not about the guys, it’s about the lies.

  5. The Protesting Alumna along with current students, parents of Peace students past and present and Past Presidents of Peace College are concerned that the current Board of Trustees and the President are destroying the educational reputation of Peace, and eliminating the traditions and values of the college’s 154 year history.

    We are not a protest solely against the admission of male students or the name change. There is a laundry list of issues/untruths/dismissals that have taken place in the reign of this current administration. These are facts and not one-side rants such as the fact that the President eliminated the Alumnae Affairs Office; that 13 staff members lost their jobs in the first 10 days of the new President in office; the fact that current students had their majors eliminated and have been forced to transfer elsewhere and that the Alum were point blank told in January 2011 that going co-ed was “no on the table”. There is also the point of money, one interview the President said it wasn’t about not being financial stable but more about becoming more marketable; yet in a different interview she states it’s because admission is down and the college is in financial jeopardy. There was not a fundraising campaign presented to the alumnae prior to this asking for more assistance to ensure this would not happen.

    The Peace Alumnae (including the descendants of William Peace himself) were excluded from the discussions about these major changes to our beloved alma mater. There have been a multitude of traditions from 20, 30, 40+ years ago that have been eliminated at the hands of the current administration.

    I personally did not want to see the all-male institutions such as Washington and Lee convert. I believe that choice of learning environment is very important and some gentlemen would benefit from all-male surroundings.

  6. For those individuals tempted to write something sarcastic, please consider holding your tongue. I doubt those who haven’t had the Peace College experience can quite understand the sensitive feelings at hand. Peace College, when I went there, was a place where I truly discovered who I was and who I wanted to be. It was a time when I met my husband and I married him in Peace’s chapel. I learned from professors who cared about my future and left a mark on my life. I have no regrets about my experience. What saddens me is that the experience I had doesn’t seemed to be one that is in the future of any other women. I am pregnant and do not yet know the sex of my child. If its a girl, I would love to say I would want her to go to Peace and have get the education and have the experience I had. But I don’t feel that I can have that hope now.

    If you’re not an alumnae, I’m sorry but you just can’t understand since there is no where like Peace College. As a result, please don’t judge our reaction, try to empathize with us as opposed to judging us. Your words truly are pouring salt on very open wounds.