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The Hamilton College Summer Program in Philosophy (HCSPiP) is designed for twenty excellent undergraduate students looking for a creative, exciting, collegial, and engaging two-week experience studying philosophy with other ambitious students. Three concurrent courses, chosen for their innovative pedagogies, will be offered, June 24–July 5, 2019:

  • “Aftermath and Backlash: Challenging Conversations about Race- and Gender-Based Violence,”  taught by Ann Cahill, Elon University
  • “Philosophical Methods of Socrates, Aquinas, and Confucius,” taught by Eric Yang, Santa Clara University
  • “Existentialism Lived,” taught by Daniel Collette, Marquette University

The HCSPiP will be an exciting and intense philosophical experience. In addition to attending all three classes every day, Monday through Friday, students are expected to prepare for those classes, both before the summer school and during the two weeks they are on campus. In addition to the three courses, the HCSPiP is arranging for at least one visiting speaker, a day trip to the Adirondacks, and a July 4 celebration. To participate actively and take advantage of the opportunity, students must have exceptional intrinsic motivation for philosophical work. No college credit is awarded.

We have room for ten Hamilton College students and ten students from other colleges or universities. There is no tuition for the HCSPiP. Room and board will be provided. In addition, students who attend the summer school will receive a $750 stipend, plus up to $500 reimbursement for travel.

Unlike other philosophy summer programs, the HCSPiP is designed not mainly to prepare students for graduate work, but to explore new ways to teach and learn philosophy.  Instructors are all committed to active, student-centered learning.  The classes may not feel like philosophy classes to which you may have become accustomed! 

Student Applications

To apply for the HCSPiP, send a letter of interest in the program, no more than 2000 words to Professor Russell Marcus, Director, by January 28, 2019.  Your letter of interest should contain the following information:

  • Your name, the name of your undergraduate institution, and your expected date of graduation
  • A list of all undergraduate philosophy courses taken
  • The name of an instructor (preferably in philosophy) who will write a letter of recommentation for you
  • Why do you study philosophy and what role do you see for philosophy in your post-college life?
  • Why are you interested in the HCSPiP?
  • How might you contribute to the diversity of our program?

In addition to your letter of application, please also send, by the same date to the same address:

  • One letter of recommendation from a philosophy teacher with whom you have worked
  • An undergraduate transcript (An unofficial copy is fine.)

Participants in the program will be selected according to the following criteria:

  • Being a rising junior or senior in an undergraduate college
  • Demonstrated ability to participate actively in the program
  • Expressed interest in the specific classes we offer
  • Strength of undergraduate record
  • Ability to diversify our student population

Here is a pdf of the call for student applications.


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