Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

New study: Teens with involved fathers more likely to graduate from college

Here’s an article by W. Bradford Wilcox from the American Enterprise Institute.

Excerpt:

Family scholars from sociologist Sara McLanahan to psychologist Ross Parke have long observed that fathers typically play an important role in advancing the welfare of their children.[2] Focusing on the impact of family structure, McLanahan has found that, compared to children from single-parent homes, children who live with both their mother and father have significantly lower rates of nonmarital childbearing and incarceration and higher rates of high school and college graduation.[3] Examining the extent and style of paternal involvement, Parke notes, for instance, that engaged fathers play an important role in “helping sons and daughters achieve independent and distinct identities” and that this independence often translates into educational and occupational success.[4]

Likewise, a US Department of Education study found that among children living with both biological parents, those with highly involved fathers were 42 percent more likely to earn As and 33 percent less likely to be held back a year in school than children whose dads had low levels of involvement.[5] But little research has examined the association between paternal involvement per se and college graduation.

I investigated that association by using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health), a study of a nationally representative sample of adolescents who were in grades 7–12 in the 1994–95 school year.[6] The Add Health data indicate that young adults who had involved fathers when they were in high school are significantly more likely to graduate from college.

[...]Compared to teens who reported that their fathers were not involved, teens with involved fathers were 98 percent more likely to graduate from college, and teens with very involved fathers were 105 percent more likely to graduate from college (see figure 1, which adjusts for socioeconomic background).[7] Clearly, young women and men with more engaged fathers are more likely to acquire a college diploma than their peers without such a father.

I would think that fathers are helpful for keeping children out of trouble, warning them away from threats, helping them to do their homework and get jobs, and showing them the value of work and frugality. I think that in general, fathers have a concern that their children will not be able to provide for themselves and will starve. They tend to try to push their kids into harder subject areas that pay more, instead of letting the kids decide what makes them happy. And it’s good for kids that fathers do those roles – it makes a difference.

Filed under: Polemics, , , , , ,

Jennifer Roback Morse lectures on sex and sexuality at Harvard University

Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse

Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse

Dr. Morse delivers a talk based on her book “Smart Sex” at Harvard University.

The MP3 file is here. (30 Mb)

Topics:

  • the hook-up culture and its effects on men and women
  • cohabitation and its effect on marriage stability
  • balancing marriage, family and career
  • single motherhood by choice and IVF
  • donor-conceived children
  • modern sex: a sterile, recreation activity
  • the real purposes of sex: procreation and spousal unity
  • the hormone oxytocin: when it is secreted and what it does
  • the hormone vassopressin: when it is secreted and what it does
  • the sexual revolution and the commoditization of sex
  • the consumer view of sex vs the organic view of sex
  • fatherlessness and multi-partner fertility
  • how the “sex-without-relationship” view harms children

52 minutes of lecture, 33 minutes of Q&A from the Harvard students. The Q&A is worth listening to – the first question is from a gay student, and Dr. Morse pulls a William Lane Craig to defeat her objection. It was awesome! I never get tired of listening to her talk, and especially on the topics of marriage and family.

Filed under: Podcasts, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

University of South Carolina Upstate teaching students to be lesbians with taxpayer money

From Campus Reform, a story that shows what awaits your children when they get to university.

Excerpt:

An upcoming LGBTQ seminar at the University of South Carolina Upstate (USCU) will teach students How to Be a Lesbian in 10 Days or Less and will focus on LGBTQ cultural mores.

According to the school’s website, theater artist Leigh Hendrix will perform her one-woman show, How to Be a Lesbian in 10 Days or Less, to kick off the sixth Bodies of Knowledge Symposium and Conference.

The show is a one-hour performance that follows Butchy McDyke, a motivational speaker and expert lesbian, as she “deftly guides her captive audience in an exploration of self-discovery and first love, coming out, lesbian sex, queer politics, and a really important Reba McEntire song.”

Hendrix encourages her audience to shout “I’m a big ‘ol dyke!” in a show that is “one part instructional seminar, one part personal story, and one party wacky performance art.”

The symposium is funded by outside grants as well as university funds according to Dr. Lisa Johnson, the Director of the Center for Women’s & Gender Studies at USCU.

Dr. Johnson declined to discuss what percentage of the funding was coming from the university.

“Until you call and ask how much money has been spent on heterosexual literature, I’m not going to answer that question,” Johnson told Campus Reform.

Earlier this month, the South Carolina House of Representatives voted to cut almost $70,000 in funding for two public universities, including $17,142 from USCU, over literature containing gay themes.

This is what your tax dollars are funding. Every time you vote for more “compassion”, you are giving money to a government that pays leftists on campus to teach your children to vote against your American values. And your kids are not just hearing the indoctrination from professors, but the whole environment at university is set up to promote the overthrow of traditional moral values. They have organizations, like this Center for Women’s & Gender Studies that promote the anti-marriage, anti-child views of the sexually-permissive left.

If you want a positive outcome for your children at college, then you need to be more careful about what they are learning in college. And you need to be more careful about preparing them for what they encounter. If you can’t explain to them how traditional marriage differs from the gay lifestyle in terms of sex addiction, domestic violence, sexually-transmitted diseases, health care costs, suicide risks, relationship duration, etc. then your kids surely don’t know what the difference is either. They will never hear it from anyone but you. No one else has any incentive to tell them about these things except you.

Filed under: News, , , , , , , , , ,

Democrats in California want to pass laws to penalize Asians

Basically, the Democrats in California want to pass an affirmative action bill, which would penalize overachievers. Asians tend to outperform other races in academics, so they are always the losers when academic criteria are minimized in favor of racial criteria for college admissions.

Here’s an article from National Review, sent to me by Letitia.

Excerpt:

The California state legislature was on the verge of approving a referendum to restore the consideration of race and ethnicity in admissions to state universities.

[...]What both sides of the bimodal Asian immigration population have in common is that their children do uncommonly well in school. They are represented in California’s much-admired universities in far larger numbers than their share of the population would suggest: Asians compose 14 percent of California’s population but 37 percent of the undergraduates at its state universities. They make up about 40 percent of the students at UCLA, 43 percent of the students at Berkeley, half the students at UC San Diego, and more than half of the students at UC Irvine. A relatively small minority, they compose the largest single ethnic group on California university campuses (at least as California defines “ethnic group”).

[...]Liberals talk a great deal of mindless rot about what they like to call “privilege,” the supposedly omnipresent advantages that accrue to the white, the male, the heterosexual, those whose sense of self is more or less congruent with their biological genitals, etc. But it is worth keeping in mind that progressive social-engineering programs such as the use of racial criteria in university admissions do not hurt only hurt well-off white people sporting penises. (Not that we should shortchange the interests of well-off white penis-sporters.) They also hurt poor people and immigrants, in this case a group of immigrants that we as a country should count ourselves lucky to have. It is important to remember why race-based admissions are such an important issue for progressives: The Left lives in the public schools, which do a terrible job of teaching black, Hispanic, and poor students, who consequently show up in embarrassingly small proportions at elite institutions. Asian students, on the other hand, do a tremendous amount of work outside of school, spending ten times as much time as non-Asian students do on organized non-school activities ranging from music lessons to tutoring to test-preparation courses. That is true across the economic spectrum: Working-class Asian immigrant families in Queens send their children to tutoring sessions and piano lessons at a much higher rate than does the non-Asian population, even though the relative financial sacrifices necessary for them to do so are heavy.

For that, California’s professional race hustlers, and their allies across the country, would see them punished.

So, here is another case where the party that talks a lot about racism and race is actually the one that is opposed to Asians getting ahead. My view is that if Asians have the strong families that produce high achievers, then let them be 40% of the students at the university. Maybe then people of other races will get the message that they need to focus more on raising children who can compete. Follow the rules and you won’t be poor: finish high school, get jobs, get married, have children, don’t get divorced. If you follow those rules, you will not be poor, and your children will outperform you.

Filed under: News, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

New book helps Christians prepare for university

Dr. Alex Chediak has written a new book about how Christians should prepare for college.

About the author: (links removed)

Born and raised in Chicago, IL, Alex Chediak earned a B.S. Degree at Alfred University in Ceramic Engineering and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Material Science & Engineering from U.C. Berkeley. He worked as an engineer for IBM for three years (1996-1999). From 2005-2007 he was an apprentice at The Bethlehem Institute (now Bethlehem College and Seminary), a masters-level theological training program overseen by Pastors John Piper and Tom Steller. During those years, Alex got his start in Christian higher education atNorthwestern College. As of 2007, he’s been a professor of engineering and physics at California Baptist University.

He has enjoyed writing young adult audiences (mid-teens through twenties) for the past, having written many articlesfor Boundless (Focus on the Family) since 2006 and now regularly contributing to Trak (God’s World News). As a professor, he wants to help students and young adults develop their God-given potential so that in all things Jesus Christ might be magnified in them. That passion gave rise to his two most recent books, Preparing Your Teens for College (Tyndale House, 2014) and Thriving at College (Tyndale House, 2011). He has also written to parents and pastors in magazines such as Christian College Guide (Christianity Today), Tabletalk (Ligonier Ministries), and Modern Reformation, and been featured on Christian radio programs such as Focus on the Family, Family Life Today, and Moody Radio’s Midday Connection (samples here). He occasionally speaks at conferences and churches about issues that impact young adults as they grow up, leave the home, and take on the mantle of adulthood.

As soon as he told me about it, I looked up that bio and decided that I was very interested in having a professor in a STEM field offer guidance to our young people. I asked him for a book excerpt and he sent me one.

Preparing Your Teens For College

Preparing Your Teens For College

Book excerpt:

My new book Preparing Your Teens for College is the overflow of my personal experience, both as a kid who once went to college and, more significantly, as a college professor who for the past eight years has worked every day with the “end products” of your labors as parents—the students who leave home and head to college in search of professional preparation, a deeper sense of purpose, and a greater awareness of their place in God’s world.

In the time since you and I have embarked on our adult lives, the challenges surrounding college education have dramatically increased. More people are going to college than ever before, it costs a fortune, we’re borrowing crazy amounts of money to go, and the newer graduates are competing with experienced candidates for precious few job openings. And high school graduates have also changed. Just as Gen Xers are different from Boomers, teens today are in a whole new category.

Lots of freshmen haven’t gotten the memo that college is a lot of work. They seem to think it’s an expensive vacation funded by you (along with student loans). Roughly one out of four freshmen does not make it to their sophomore year, usually due to immaturity or lack of focus. Other students get by, but never really grasp the purpose of the academic enterprise—they don’t become lifelong learners; clear-headed thinkers; well-rounded, flexible, honest, hardworking, self-starting, responsible, mature, humble men and women. They never develop strong communication, problem-solving, or people skills—the very qualities employers are looking for. Moreover, these traits equip us to love and honor God with all our minds and to do good works in the marketplace, in the laboratory, in the library, in the classroom, in the hospital, in the law courts, on the mission field, or wherever God leads us.

Many teens today are more dependent on their parents than we were at their age. They’re more distracted by media and technology. They’re less willing to discipline themselves and work hard. And they expect success to come more easily than is realistic. In a survey of more than 2,000 high school seniors in the Chicago area, sociologist James Rosenbaum found that almost half of them (46 percent) agreed with the statement “Even if I do not work hard in high school, I can still make my future plans come true.”

Yet studies have shown—ironically—that overconfidence leads to underperformance. Those whose self-esteem is more reinforced, apart from objective accomplishment, exhibit declining performance over time and are most likely to quit. It makes sense. If you think you’re better at something than you really are, you expect it to come easily. This makes you less likely to work at it, less likely to succeed, and more likely to be surprised and disappointed when you don’t. As a professor, I have seen this happen many times.

I’m happy to say that some students are well prepared, get over the inevitable hurdles, and come out on the other side just fine. Others who start off poorly respond

well to correction. They learn their lesson and graduate with a high degree of maturity and skill.

Training matters. Not just what we professors do on campus but what you do before your teens ever get to us. Thriving at college begins in the home. What you model and impart to your teens, day in and day out, makes a huge difference.

I’ve seen this play out countless times in the lives of my students, for good and for ill. Some students from churched backgrounds leave the faith while at college, either temporarily or permanently. Many fail to adjust to the rigors of college-level academics—even some of our most gifted students. And beyond academics, “failure to launch” is not uncommon—students preferring to linger in the no-man’s-land of adolescence rather than complete the journey to full-orbed adulthood.

Each of these topics is the subject of countless books in recent years. And while there may be disagreement on the best remedies for spiritually apostate, professionally wandering, or developmentally stunted twentysomethings, there’s strong agreement on what can mitigate these ailments: godly, involved parents who intentionally and wisely invest in their children, in word and deed, at all stages, but particularly in the teen years. There’s no doubt about it—what you and I do as parents, before our teens leave home, has the greatest likelihood of preventing these kinds of decline.

Shepherding your children in the direction of responsible Christian living in every sphere of life prepares them for the tests of post–high school life like nothing else can. “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6). “Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth” (Psalm 127:4)—to be released with care and intentionality into the world to find their mark for the glory of God and to become mighty change agents for the good of others.

So Preparing Your Teens for College is for you. When I get to know college freshmen, I recognize that the worldview and character they bring to college are the result of 18 or 19 years of living with their parents. Their worldview (how they think) and their character (who they are) impact their attitude (what they think) and behavior (what they do). Their attitude and behavior, in turn, give rise to their habits and their destiny, as they (like we) reap what they sow (see Galatians 6:7).

And all of this is true whether your children become medical doctors or ultrasound technicians, engineers or electricians, businesspeople or beauticians. A four-year college is but one of several possible launching pads into a responsible, fruitful life.

Learn more about Preparing Your Teens for College, and read more from the Introduction, on Alex’s website.

This post is an excerpt from Preparing Your Teens for College by Alex Chediak. Copyright 2014 by Alex Chediak. Used with permission from Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.

What interested me about this book in particular was the author’s biography. If I had any children, I would be very pleased if they turned out like Alex. He has a great academic background, he’s a professor at a Christian college, his faith is intact, and he’s having an influence on young people. I wish more of our young people were like that. I want to know how to get our Christian kids to get to a place where they can have an influence, and I want them to be thoughtful about how they get there. I see a lot of young people wanting to make their lives count, but I think they need to have a plan, and make wise choices about what to study and how much to pay for it.

I wanted to know if the book was practical, and based on this article he wrote in 2011, it looks like it will be practical. He embraces the wisdom model of decision making, and that’s probably why he’s been successful.

Filed under: Mentoring, , , , , , , , ,

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