We have all been there: the middle of class learning about the morality of socialism and tearing apart the ethics of opposition. Conservative opinions continue to be silenced in the ironic names of inclusion and safety on college campuses. There is an ongoing debate as to if conservative students should stand up for their beliefs or if they should tailor their assignments and participation to their professor’s opinions for better grades. While this argument seems as if it can be a lose-lose situation, I have come to learn some simple ways to deal with liberal professors and overcome the game.

This school year, I was confronted with one of the biggest challenges I have yet to face. I faced a professor I was actually afraid to speak up in front of. In a class strictly about ancient texts, we spent the first day hearing about the rise of white supremacy and its similarity to Nazism. We compared cherry-picked evidence to learn that the right is really synonymous to racism. Nonetheless, I almost dropped the class, but decided to stay in it, get a good laugh, and overcome the adversity. I want to share the three things I did and continue to do to remind myself it’s all a matter of overcoming the trial.

1) Respect them

Ultimately, your grade is in their hands, so respect is key to navigating your way to do well. In addition, they have a college degree and working experience, while students tend not to. While they may be liberal, that doesn’t mean you can’t learn from them. Acknowledging that they have credentials is the first step in ensuring you behave with integrity.

2) Know you’re not alone

It is important to recognize that, chances are, you are not the only one thinking the same thing. If you are questioning something you are being taught, someone else probably is as well. They might just not be as confident to speak up about it. It is your call if you think your grade may be influenced by sharing a different perspective. Talking to other classmates about your concerns can help. Even if you don’t find classmates that align with your political leanings, finding conservative groups on campus gives you a network you can always count on.

3) Don’t lose passion when it gets discouraging

The atmosphere of class under the authority of a biased professor can be discouraging. Seemingly being the only student who cares about what is going on is not the greatest feeling. However, if you know the circumstances might not be the best, you can prepare for it. What I usually do is challenge the lecture for the day by reading it from different perspectives. Knowing you have a whole network of conservative women to support you reinforces you to not lose your passion. Not only is it empowering to laugh about these scenarios with, but they empower you to go back to the next class with confidence and knowledge.

If you use these three tips when you encounter a biased professor and know who to turn to, you can succeed. There will be some roadblocks, but it is only a small fraction of your college experience. It is important to find the best in it.

Kelly H