Advanced Humanities Institute

The ​​Advanced Humanities Institute​​ (AHI) is a two-year advanced interdisciplinary program offered to students with a deep interest in the humanities. The AHI allows students to explore how humans use literature, art, music, theatre, philosophy, history, and language to understand our connection to the world and to one another. ​The class meets three times a week during junior year and is organized in units that address the guiding principles of humanities. Field trips, opportunities to interact with scholars, historians, artists, musicians, and professors will supplement classroom learning. As students make sense of their lives and the world, the AHI would encourage creativity, inquiry-based learning, civil discourse, and debate to help solve real-world problems and make sense of the past which is critical to the human experience.

The institute focuses on particular disciplines across the three trimesters of the first year: Studio Art and Global Art History​​; ​​Philosophy, Theory, and Research; and ​​Civil Discourse and Social Inquiry​​ (sociology, psychology, political science). Each unit would be designed to supplement offerings in the standard SHC curriculum. The guiding tools of the institute would be the sketchbook and the journal. In year one, students would learn to sketch, paint, and draw while also writing critical responses, journal entries, ethnographic sketches, and creative literary experiments. The work spent in year one would translate to year two when students ​define a field of inquiry they are passionate about and formulate a question​. Students will then work on a research paper or portfolio, and a poster session presentation (to be featured in the Advanced Humanities Research Fair at SHC).

Each trimester of the first year would feature a trip to a museum, archive, gallery, or fieldwork site. In the summer between the first and second year, students will go on a fieldwork trip to a major city or cluster of cities. Study sites may include Italy, France, Spain, and England. These trips are framed as fieldwork and an extension of their sketching, journaling, and thinking.