CFI supports a growing network of campus groups on about 200 campuses throughout North America and around the world. While this is a much smaller number than its “cultural competitors,” with groups like Campus Crusade for Christ having an annual operating budget of $380 million, Center for Inquiry’s campus groups are able to have an increasing impact through the dedication and vision of its student leaders.
In this conversation with D.J. Grothe, eight student leaders of CFI campus groups explore questions of mission and focus, as well as obstacles they face as they seek to advance science and secularism at the high school and college levels. They debate various strategies for outreach, and detail their successes, including events they have organized and faculty supporters they have discovered. They talk about the problem of how to present themselves to their wider learning community and how welcoming they should be of students who don’t share their worldview. They also emphasize the importance of open-ended free inquiry, and how they see their goals as continuous with the university itself.
(Pictured to the left are Alon Levy from Columbia University and Sarah Stone from IUPUI)