As many of you may, I am a student at Yale University, which is an extremely liberal university in an extremely liberal state. The coffee shops on campus are called Blue State, if that gives you any indication of what I’m dealing with. In my freshman year alone I dealt with crazy feminists, “Reverend” Al Sharpton,  attempts at divestment from fossil fuels, and a “Hands Up Don’t Shoot” campaign. You could say I spend the majority of my year in liberal hell. I knew how liberal Yale was when I chose it to be my home for four years.  Even though it can be tough, I don’t regret it in the slightest. I chose a liberal university, and that has actually made me a better and stronger conservative. Here is why I chose one of the most liberal universities in the country.

1) I didn’t have many other options

While there are some great conservative colleges out there, such as Hillsdale, Liberty, and the College of the Ozarks, they are far outnumbered by liberal universities. If I had limited myself to only applying to conservative schools, I would have spent much less time on applications, but also not ended up at my dream school. At the end of the day, there are WAY more liberal than conservative schools.

2) I like to stand out

On my campus of around 5000 students, I estimate there are less than 300 active and proud conservatives. There are even less that are “out” on campus.  Because of this, I get to stand out. When I wear my FFL gear on campus, especially my I’m Always Right long-sleeve, I always get attention.  Being a conservative on a liberal campus is like being a giant in Lilliputia. You stand out, and people can’t help but notice you.

3) I get to be the light in the liberal tunnel

While there may be a lot of liberals on my campus, there is a little light in there with our campus conservative groups.  Many of the conservatively minded students look to us for hope and guidance in the scary times on campus.  I and my fellow campus conservatives get to be a light in the scary, liberal tunnel that is our university, and give hope to alumni that have already left New Haven, and students to come in the future. It is possible to survive as a conservative on campus.

4) I get to be part of a small, but tight knit community

The core of my campus conservative group is less than twenty people strong. Some of my closest friends I met through conservative events on campus. It is amazing to have a small group of people that you get to know very well, but also who you agree with on the issues that truly matter and will affect our lives for years to come.  Because we are so small a group, we know each other well, are committed to upholding conservatism together, and we always get first dibs at dinners with prominent conservatives.

5) There is always something to stand up against

My university is the one that began the “Sex Week” trend and had a student several years ago who wanted to give herself abortions as an art project. Couple that with protests to divest from fossil fuels and attempts at removing historic names from our buildings, and you’ve got something to stand up against every day. I never find conservative complacency on my campus, and I appreciate that. Constantly finding faults with the liberal students and administration gives me something to fight for and against, and forces me to work to uphold conservatism.

6) There are tons of people to convert to the right

I assume that well over half of my university strongly identifies with the Democratic Party, based on the horrific posts I see on Facebook almost daily and the general atmosphere on campus. This gives me over half of the student body to lead back in the right direction. As we all know, college students are still forming their beliefs on many things, and it is our duty, as campus conservatives, to show them the a different way of thinking about our world.

7)  I strengthen my own beliefs when I constantly have to defend them

When I voice my opinion on campus, rarely do people agree with me. Usually, I’m called a racist, bigot or idiot at least twice a day.  I constantly have to defend myself and my beliefs from all sides, whether it be in class or in my dorm room.  This gives me a chance to constantly strengthen my own arguments by hearing the arguments of those on the left. I probably wouldn’t hear as often if I went to a conservative school. Also, it has taught me to have thick skin. If I can deal with potential friends calling me bigots, I can deal with anything strangers on the internet throw at me.

Aryssa D
FFL Cabinet Member