Skip to main content Accessibility

Faculty Adviser Quits, YWC Loses Official Status at Towson University

Nearly two weeks after members of the Towson University chapter of Youth for Western Civilization chalked messages on university sidewalks that included the words “white pride,” the group has lost its campus privileges.

The school’s official recognition of the YWC was pulled when the group’s faculty adviser informed chapter president Matthew Heimbach that he would no longer be associated with the group.

“They were using rhetoric in their arguments that I found were not appropriate,” said the adviser, communications professor Richard Vatz.

In a letter to Heimbach, Vatz cited recent comments by YWC leaders at a Unity Campus Forum several weeks ago that included what he called “frightening rhetoric” describing political opponents as “cancer” and “disgusting degenerates.”

“This is not how conservatives comport themselves,” Vatz, himself a conservative, told Hatewatch.

YWC still can have a presence on campus, but it will not be recognized by the Student Government Association. That means it can no longer use campus facilities.

Vatz’s withdrawal is a blow to Heimbach, who has ties to the neo-confederate League of the South and worked hard to overcome resistance to the school’s  official recognition of the group.

“They found a loophole,” said Heimbach, explaining the YWC chapter's ouster.

After the chalk messages, Heimbach admitted to The Baltimore Sun that members were indeed responsible for the sidewalk markings. But, he said the group is “only promoting traditional conservative values and is not racist.” He also told the Sun that he is advocating “pride in his culture,” not “white power.”

Comments or suggestions? Send them to Have tips about the far right? Please email: Have documents you want to share? Please visit: Follow us on Twitter @Hatewatch.