Press Releases | General Education

ACTA’s New Oases of Excellence Directory Will Help Alumni Support Academic Excellence

June 5, 2014

The American Council of Trustees and Alumni is excited to announce the launch of a new online directory of Oases of Excellence, specific programs at colleges and universities across the country that promote the study of American history, Western civilization, political theory, economics, leadership, and the Great Books. ACTA’s directory features over 50 programs at a wide range of institutions and will serve as an invaluable resource for reform-minded alumni and donors.

Many alumni and donors seek to influence colleges and universities through donations to institutions’ general operating funds. But these funds too often end up underwriting the unacceptable status quo of curricular mediocrity and political correctness on campus. That is why ACTA has long encouraged donors to support Oases of Excellence that fight back against prevailing campus orthodoxy.  In the past, ACTA has periodically featured individual programs in our newsletters and published guides. Now, alumni and donors will have a single, comprehensive database where they can learn about the wonderful work these “Oases” do.

“These programs are an effective way to change the culture of the academy from the inside,” said ACTA president Anne Neal. “Instead of blindly writing checks, it is time donors target their giving to initiatives that provide students with a broad-based education in foundational texts and ideas.”

This new resource was made possible through the generous support of John R. Wilson, a long-time supporter of ACTA. It builds on ACTA’s previous efforts, such as last year’s “Alumni to the Rescue” online townhall, to educate alumni about how to influence their almae matres through philanthropic support. If you wish to support one of these fine programs or who are seeking to start one at your alma mater, please contact ACTA.


Launched in 1995, we are the only organization that works with alumni, donors, trustees, and education leaders across the United States to support liberal arts education, uphold high academic standards, safeguard the free exchange of ideas on campus, and ensure that the next generation receives an intellectually rich, high-quality college education at an affordable price.

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