Colorado Christian University is marketing itself as an antidote to “woke” culture and progressive values in American higher education that many conservatives have described as a leftist indoctrination of students.
The private university claims to be an “island of sanity” that provides students with an education based on faith and love for “our Constitution and our country,” according to CCU Chancellor Donald Sweeting.
CCU’s enrollment numbers appear to show that the Lakewood, Colorado-based university has managed to tap into this frustration expressed by some Christian conservatives. While enrollment at universities and colleges has been declining nationwide, CCU last year celebrated its 13th consecutive year of record enrollment.
“The reason we keep getting another year of consecutive record enrollments is because there’s so much insanity in higher education,” Sweeting said at an event at the Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C., last week.
The event took place on the eve of the March for Life. The annual anti-abortion rally has become an important event for the university, which has set its sight on abolishing abortion access across the country.
“We are, I believe, the most pro-life university in the nation. We just registered the trademark ‘Pro-Life U,’” Sweeting said. “It’s very important that we take a stand on this. Our Board of Trustees has said this is something that matters, so every board member is committed to it. Every faculty member, every staff member is unapologetically pro-life.”
Sweeting, who is an educator and pastor, called last year’s Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v Wade and therefore the constitutional right to abortion a “milestone.” The Dobbs decision also meant that the focus has now shifted to the“fight for a day when abortion is unthinkable” in the United States, said Sweeting.
The university is not shy about this goal and its intention of educating the next generation of politicians and leaders that will continue this fight.
“We’re deeply committed to the conservative worldview,” said Jeff Hunt, director of CCU’s public policy think tank Centennial Institute. “There’s a little bit of despair about the direction of our state and about the direction of our country. We want to raise up Christian conservative statesmen and stateswomen. We have to be incredibly intentional about changing this culture.”
CCU sent about 30 students to Washington to participate in the march and attend pro-life workshops over the weekend. And even though the Supreme Court returned the question of abortion rights to the states, the fight on the federal level continues.
“We were glad that the Democrats lost the House because had they kept the House, they would have tried to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act, which would guarantee a nationwide access to abortion, but they lost. This is why elections matter. And this is why your involvement matters, because elections have consequences,” Sweeting said.
CCU and the Centennial Institute supported a number of bills in the past that would have restricted access to abortion services in Colorado.