Since I was appointed to my first job in 1967 until today, my social circle has, for obvious reasons, included a lot of other academics. Amongst these, as well as amongst the dozens and dozens of university people I have come across professionally, I have been friends with, run into, or been part of the same events as, not a few Marxists and other kinds of socialist, other anti-capitalist radicals. Now that I'm retired I see fewer people from a university milieu than I used to, but I believe it still to be the case that academics of the sorts of persuasion I've just listed can be found in British universities and those of other democratic nations.
One of the Marxists I knew somewhat back in the day was Terry Eagleton. Terry concludes a piece on Rousseau in today's Guardian by saying:
Universities are no longer educational in any sense of the word that Rousseau would have recognised. Instead, they have become unabashed instruments of capital.
It's another version of a claim he's made before.
In capitalist societies, universities undoubtedly will reflect the needs of the capitalist economy to some very large extent. But 'unabashed instruments'? If this were truly so, why would all these Marxists and such be free to pursue their research and teach in the (more or less) free universities of the Western world? I suppose one might try, in response, some variant of Marcusian 'repressive tolerance'. But it was a duff thesis back then, and it's the same thing now. Intellectual tolerance is a great boon and its absence a blight and an oppression. If universities in democratic countries were really unabashed instruments of capital, they would be worse institutions than they are. As the saying nearly is, be careful what you portray.