2013 Summer Academy
St. John’s College is a direct descendant of King William’s School, founded in 1696. It has two campuses, one in Annapolis, Maryland and one in Santa Fe, NM. Four mountain ranges can be seen from the Santa Fe campus, reaching heights of over 13,000 feet above sea level. One of these ranges is adjacent to the 250 acre campus. Hiking trails lead directly into the national forest, yet downtown is only 2 miles away. Guided trips during The Summer Academy will take advantage of both of these locations. Also, many dorms and classroom buildings have balconies with panoramic views to enjoy on sunny afternoons, but the high altitude (7,300 feet) ensures pleasantly cool evenings.
Summer Academy students will have full access to campus amenities such as the Student Activities Center, Meem Library, and our Computer Lab. Meals will be provided which can accommodate a wide variety of dietary preferences. 85% of all ingredients used are local and/or organic. Vegan and vegetarian options are available. More information about campus services and facilities can be found at: http://conferenceservices.sjcsf.edu/. Detailed information tailored specifically to the Summer Academy students will be provided upon acceptance into the program.
The City and Travel Information
Santa Fe is the nation’s oldest capital city and is one of country’s top arts markets. It is rich in history and culture, both of which Academy students will have the chance to experience. Parents who choose to vacation here will find that Santa Fe offers big-city amenities set in clear air and natural beauty.
Though Santa Fe has a small airport, most visitors find it more convenient to fly into Albuquerque’s International Sunport. From the airport in Albuquerque, Santa Fe can be reached by train, shuttle or car. For more information on transportation, entertainment and accommodations, see: http://www.stjohnscollege.edu/resources/SF_VisitorInformation.pdf. Transportation from the airport to campus will be provided free of charge for students traveling alone.
The academic programs on the Santa Fe campus consist of seminar, mathematics tutorial, language tutorial, and either music or laboratory The aim is to recreate the St. John’s experience as much as possible in a single week. Seminar will meet four times. Each type of tutorial will meet three times, and laboratory or music twice.
Seminar is the heart of our program. It is a serious and sustained discussion of a reading held between two faculty members and 16-21 students seated around a table. One faculty member begins with a question on the reading in order to inspire a conversation that, from then on, is driven by the students. Faculty members join in as a part of the group inquiry, which centers on that reading assignment and any difficulties it presents. Spontaneous learning and discovery distinguishes seminar from a typical learning environment because everyone works together to find new insights. All opinions are welcome, but all must be supported by textual evidence and discussion. We intend to learn how to make points justified by textual evidence and to pose questions provoked by texts in the hope of gaining a deeper understanding of the work. Because careful reading is essential, we will have individual reading time daily to complete assignments.
Mathematics and language tutorials are led by a single faculty member and have 9-11 students. These classes are discussion based as well, but here the small group works together on careful analysis. Whether through demonstrating a mathematical proposition or developing sensitivity to the language in a poem, the aim is to understand what is at stake. We seek to engage in a close and careful reading that will foster deeper insights and deeper questions. Music tutorials work in much the same way, with a focus on understanding music theory and analysis of works of musical literature.
At St. John’s College, students come to understand the significance of science as a human enterprise through re-creation of pivotal experiments in the history of science as well as discussion of associated original writings. These same principles will be followed in The Summer Academy where laboratory will be a mixture of critical discussion and empirical inquiry. In addition to the academic offerings, students will have multiple opportunities to work with members of the St. John’s admissions and financial aid staff. Students will receive help in planning and preparing for the college application process, applicable to whatever type of college or university he or she might be interested in. Group and individual meetings will provide different venues for working through questions about the process as well as a chance to make lasting connections with staff who can provide assistance long after the summer ends.
7:30 – 9:00 am Breakfast
9:00 – 11:00 am Laboratory or Music
11:00 – 12:00 pm Admissions Workshop
12:00 – 1:00 pm Lunch
1:00 – 2:30 pm Reading Time
2:30 – 4:00 pm Language Tutorial
4:00 – 6:00 pm Athletic Event
6:00 – 7:30 pm Dinner/Free Time
7:30 – 9:30 pm Seminar
9:30 – 11:00 pm Rehearsal for Dramatic Performance
Sample Extracurricular Events
Santa Fe Opera
Bradbury Science Museum at Los Alamos National Laboratory
Music On The Hill
Georgia O’Keefe Museum
Bandelier National Monument/ Frijoles Canyon Ruins
New Mexico History Museum
Canyon Road Art Walk
Sangre de Cristo Hike
If you love to read and to share your thoughts with others, it might be hard to decide what is more fun—your time in the classroom or out. The collaborative intellectual engagement fostered at St. John’s College tends to spill over into all activities, blurring the line between what is serious inquiry and what is plain fun
During your week at St. John’s, you will have a chance to cross intellectual boundaries, exploring outside the lines of narrow, isolated disciplines. You’ll have a chance to express yourself in small groups, to converse, relax and recreate along with college students. You will join fellow Academy students in a range of on and of campus extracurricular activities, whether under starry night skies at the opera or blue-capped vistas above ancient ruins. Who knew college could be so fun? One week may not be enough! (You may to apply for both.)
Structure and Supervision
In the classroom there will be an approximately 1:9 faculty to student ratio. Faculty will be involved outside of the classroom as well, taking part in various extracurricular activities and meals. Admissions and financial aid staff will lead college preparatory activities. As graduate and undergraduate classes run in the summer, the general college support staff will be available and involved as well, such as the college Direct of Health and Wellness. Select students from St. John’s College will have a special role as mentors, each being responsible for a core group of six Academy students. They will share life in the dorms, participate in and lead extracurricular activities, assist during study time, and share their understanding of the program. In addition to the mentors living alongside the Academy students, an adult Senior resident will be on duty at all times. The senior residents are faculty and staff who reside on campus in the dorms.. Quiet hours on campus are 10 pm to 7am Monday through Thursday.
Seminars for Adults
If this program looks exciting to you, but you are no longer in high school, check out our Summer Classics page: http://www.stjohnscollege.edu/outreach/SF/SC/classics.shtml. These seminars are geared for adults.