In new Bob Jones University podcast, former students and faculty blast ‘insular’ culture

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‘Surviving Bob Jones University: A Christian Cult’ aims to show how alleged patterns of conformity, isolation, information control and surveillance impacted members of the Bob Jones ecosystem.

(RNS) — Even when Steve Pettit resigned as president of Bob Jones University in April after citing a dysfunctional board, he had only glowing things to say about the historically fundamentalist South Carolina school.

“There’s no question to me that God brought Bob Jones into existence and it’s his school and God’s going to accomplish his will through it,” Pettit told a Greenville, South Carolina, news outlet in June. “I think the future of the school is bright.”

But some former faculty and students have a less flattering perspective to share.

There’s the student who said she was interrogated and disciplined after her boyfriend gave her a side hug.

There’s the faculty member who claims she was given an ultimatum and eventually resigned after refusing to let teachers at the school-sponsored day care spank her 2-year-old.

There’s the student who reported hiding in his closet on Sunday mornings to avoid being punished for skipping church.

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