Outreach

Graduate of Odyssey Junior in Madison, WI

At the NAACP office in Washington, D.C., where she is interning this fall, Trea Vance collects stories of racial discrepancies in the criminal justice system. A junior at the University of Wisconsin majoring in political science and legal studies, her work in Washington has furthered her resolve to go to law school. As an attorney—and ultimately a judge—she believes she can make a difference.


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Teaching Artist for Kids in Free Minds

When Freddy Carnes arrives to teach a few doors down from the Free Minds—the Clemente affiliate in Austin—he might be carrying a guitar, a box of costumes from a Shakespeare play, or a stack of journals kids will fill with their writing through the year. One thing is for sure: he’s there to create some magic.


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Original Post: University of Utah | College of the Humanities

Utah Humanities partners with the University of Utah to bring the humanities to high school students


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Original post- UMass/Dartmouth - Published by Office of Public Affairs

Associate Professor Mark Santow teaches Clemente Course in the Humanities to economically disadvantaged residents of New Bedford and Providence


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Katly Toles and Lukiki Akola often had to wait around to take the last bus home after their Clemente Course at the Care Center in Holyoke, MA. The time that could have been drudgery instead nurtured a friendship that has the two women calling each other mother and daughter. Now the Clemente graduates will be supporting one another as they both continue toward a degree at the Bard Microcollege.


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Co-authored by Clemente's own Vive Griffith

Original post at Safe and Peaceful by Abe Louise Young and Vive Griffith

Young people find voice, power and change

The high school generation is galvanizing people worldwide to demand gun reform, and the mobilization of hundreds of thousands of protestors at the March For Our Lives this spring made their leadership clear.


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Graduate, Clemente Veterans' Initiative in Seattle

George Williams is on his way to becoming a psychiatric social worker. He hopes to work with veterans and addicts, people whose lives may not have been so different from his own. He credits his time in a Clemente Veterans’ Initiative class for preparing him to pursue his dream.


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Academic Director in New Bedford, MA

If you’re looking for Dr. Mark Santow, try a classroom. As founding director of the Clemente Course in New Bedford, MA, and Chair of History at UMass-Dartmouth, he’s got plenty. 


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Katie Kowalski
Port Townsend Leader, Mar 14, 2018

“I hate Shakespeare.”

It’s the line every teacher of the Bard has heard at least once, probably more.

Arendt Speser takes that comment as a personal challenge.

Speser is the academic director of the Jefferson Clemente Course in the Humanities, which offers free college-level courses to low-income adults.

This year, the class he is leading will be introduced to “Julius Caesar” through a public reading the class is presenting at The Boiler Room next week.

“I don’t expect everyone to love 'Caesar' by the end of our sessions, but I do hope to encourage a new enthusiasm for the old Bard,” Speser said.

The student readings take place from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., April 23 and 25 at The Boiler Room, 711 Water St.

TIMELY

Including a Shakespeare play in the Clemente Course is standard; the play can change from year to year.

“It can vary depending on the course theme and instructor preference,” said Speser.

This year, Speser chose “Julius Caesar” to tie into the Royal National Theatre of London performance of that play, which will be screened at The Rose Theatre April 21 and 29.

“I have no doubt in my mind they picked this play because of what it says to our current political climate.”

“‘Caesar,’” Speser said, taps into issues of power, corruption and the tension between tyranny and democracy. “In a more intimate way (it’s also about), what happens when conspiracy destroys relationships between friends and countrymen.”

One scene that will be acted out is a scene between Brutus and Portia.

That scene, Speser said, “speaks in shockingly contemporary tones about our current anxiety about gender and power.”

KNOWLEDGE IS KEY

Port Townsend’s Lisa Wentworth, who said she loves to learn just for the sake of learning, is one of the students participating in the class.

“If we don’t learn from our history, we are doomed to repeat it,” she said of the importance of turning back to older texts in modern times.

Turning to classic texts is fundamental to the Clemente Course.

“I highly recommend Clemente,” Wentwort said. “Knowledge is key, and it can open up a whole world for you.”

The community is invited to attend the public readings next week.

“Above all, the play speaks to the dangers of empire and the hazards of a blind patriotism,” said Speser. “It asks the fundamental political question: Is what is good for Rome good for Romans, and vice versa? We see a public trying to exert its political will, while also being manipulated by men in power.”

This, Speser added, is a relevant topic for today.


New York, NY (April 9, 2018)

The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) today announced that the Clemente Course in the Humanities is among its 2018 grant recipients, awarded $96,000 to expand its work in the NEH Dialogues on the Experience of War initiative. Projects funded through NEH Dialogues on the Experience of War grants will support humanities-based programs for military veterans and their families.
 
This is the second consecutive NEH grant Clemente has received to support the Clemente Veterans Initiative (CVI), which was developed in 2014 to provide a meaningful intellectual community to veterans who are struggling to adapt to civilian life. CVI is based on the idea that guided discussion of humanities texts and images can provide veterans with an opportunity to reflect on their military experiences and support their transition to post-military life.
 
Dialogues will be held in the Spring of 2019 in: 

  • Providence, RI, at the University of Rhode Island
  • Charleston, SC, at Trident Technical College
  • Boston, MA, at Codman Square Health Center

Each dialogue will enroll 15-20 students, the majority of whom will be veterans. Dialogues will meet twice a week for 12 weeks, using diverse texts and images to explore themes such as loyalty, moral injury and reconciliation. The course, including books, child care and transportation assistance, will be offered free of charge to participants. Transferable college credit will be available from Bard College.
 
“For more than 20 years, we have seen how the humanities helps marginalized people place their stories and life experiences into a broader examination of historical and moral questions,” said Lela Hilton, Clemente’s National Program Director. “In Clemente, we do this in small, classroom communities where conversations begin without judgment, and can then move toward understanding how our stories fit into the larger questions. What does it mean to live a good life, to be a citizen, to be human? We are thrilled to share this work with men and women whose lives have been so deeply impacted by serving in the military. It is a true honor.”
 
Founded in 1996, the Clemente Course in the Humanities is now offered in 30 sites in the US. It provides free, accredited college courses in the humanities to those facing economic hardship and adverse circumstances. Students are guided by highly experienced college faculty who, using the Socratic method, provide a rigorous education in literature, philosophy, American history, art history, and critical thinking and writing. Clemente was awarded the 2014 National Humanities Medal by President Obama. 
 
For more information:
NEH Announcement
Dialogues on the Experience of War


Kafi Dixon is the founder of Seeds of Change, an organization that allows individuals to come together to purchase food items collectively from local farms and wholesale distributors.

I never went to high school. I never went to high school. I was homeless; it was just too hard. When I was 16, I got pregnant and had my first daughter, and then when I was 19 I had mysecond daughter. Over the years I was ashamed because I didn’t have an education. I started several small businesses; a bedding shop, a farm stand, anything to get away without having to explain that I don’t have a GED. It was like this dirty little secret I was carrying around.

I really wanted to start a farm, but I needed a business plan to do that. I was paralyzed. I was unable to communicate my ideas for this business in writing. I’m more than capable of running a business, but I lacked confidence to write the plan, and I didn’t have networks of people I could turn to that had skills in writing, research or business planning.

That’s when I found Clemente. Clemente took my natural abilities and shined them so that others could see them. The professors and my fellow students also pushed me to recognize my own strengths. 


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Waldo Aguavivas is a student at Suffolk University.

In my family, other things were always more important than education. My mother had to work three jobs to put food on the table. She couldn’t come home and help me with homework or urge me to go to school. School was uncomfortable for me because I’m a gay Dominican male. I dropped out in 2005 when I was in 11th grade.

When I signed up for Clemente in 2011 I didn’t know what a syllabus was. My writing needed improvement. I struggled but I worked hard to improve, meeting regularly with the writing coach. Clemente made me realize that no question is a dumb question. I saw that others have the same questions I do, so I’m no longer scared to ask. The professors encouraged me to express myself. Through Clemente I learned self - discipline, and gained an understanding of what college is all about.


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Amy Howard is a member of the Port Townsend, WA City Council and is the executive director of the Boiler Room, a community art and social service center.

I thought I was going to be working in dead end jobs forever. Clemente showed me that I could think and that my ideas were valid. Now I encourage my volunteers and staff to take the Clemente Course because I know that it can change lives.

I grew up in a town of 500 people then moved to Seattle after high school. I became addicted to methamphetamines. When I decided to leave that scene, two street kids put me on the ferry and sent me to Port Townsend. I was homeless at the time, but I volunteered at the Boiler Room and that gave me a purpose.

I learned about Clemente when the program director gave a presentation at the Boiler Room. At first I was afraid to even try learning because I was scared that my addiction had ruined my brain, but the academic director made it seem so interesting that I decided to try.

Clemente was amazing. The subject matter was fascinating and the teachers were engaging. Most importantly, I was surrounded by other people who also faced challenging circumstances but were equally engaged, and wanted to learn. It was the catalyst that I needed to change my life.


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Academic Director, Clemente Course, Port Townsend, WA

Dr. Arendt Speser

There’s a new kid on the Clemente block. In 2017, Dr. Arendt Oak Speser joined the team as the new academic director of Jefferson Clemente. He’s the program’s second director, stepping into the role vacated by Clemente National Program Director Lela Hilton, who founded the Port Townsend, WA, program in 1999.


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2006 Graduate, Odyssey Project in Madison, WI

Around the state of Wisconsin, people travel to hear Corey Saffold speak.


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American Family Insurance funds a counselor to work with Odyssey Project students

With a free humanities class, the University of Wisconsin–Madison Odyssey Project helps low-income adults overcome obstacles to higher education.


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Dr. John Macready LIVE on The Jeff Crilley Show

Watch the recording of the October 4th live interview with Dr. John Macready on The Jeff Crilley Show where he discusses Free Minds Dallas.


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2016 Clemente Course Graduate from Kingston, NY

One thing that’s clear about Jewel Walcott is that she never stops learning. A graduate of the course in Kingston, NY—where she was selected commencement speaker the following year—Jewel carries a notebook with her wherever she goes. “I use it to write down random thoughts,” she says, “or I watch a movie and find myself unintentionally writing an essay about it. My Clemente writing instructor gave me permission to express myself on paper.”


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Professor in Bridge, Antioch University Los Angeles

Anyone who wonders how the experience of studying the humanities translates to the real world should talk to Rosa Garza-Mourino.


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Congratulations to Halifax Humanities

Kings College student and filmmaker, Rachel O’Brien, interviewed and filmed Halifax Humanities students and teachers for this short film.


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Graduates: Humanities courses equip students with skills for any profession

by Katie Kowalski as published at PTLeader.com

Studying the humanities instilled in Justin Lake a deep sense of self and place in the world. He came to see himself as someone who could take part in society, make changes and have a voice.

“I felt like a more responsible citizen,” he said.

Lake is a 36-year-old single father and a graduate of the Jefferson Clemente Course, a branch of the Clemente Course in the Humanities that offers college courses to low-income individuals. He’s a naturalist who teaches all over Jefferson County, and he’s now working on getting a teacher’s certificate.

Erik Montoya, age 37, also is a single father who benefited from the free classes in the humanities.

“I know it sounds corny, but it really was a life-changing experience for me,” said Montoya, who is working to get a bachelor’s degree so he can teach history.

Their stories are not uncommon for Clemente students, said Lela Hilton, a national director who founded the Jefferson County branch of Clemente.

“They get that fire from education, and figure out what to do,” she said. “I think that all of our students see that liberal arts and the humanities are incredibly practical.”

Clemente offers its courses free of charge to qualifying individuals, and this Friday, June 23, is hosting NPR’s “Says You!” team to help benefit the program.


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MEET JEAN CHENEY
Founder, Venture Course in the Humanities in Utah

Twelve years after founding Venture, a Clemente-inspired course in Utah, Dr. Jean Cheney is more convinced than ever of the value of humanities education.

“It opens people up to new ways of thinking about themselves and their world. And it empowers them to make changes they want to make going forward,” she says. “I am a believer because of what I have witnessed.”

When she joined Utah Humanities in 1997 after a career as a freelance writer and English teacher in high schools and colleges, creating a college humanities class for low-income adults was not on her mind. But after hearing Clemente founder Earl Shorris speak a year later, the wheels got turning. In fact, Jean says she had “a sort of epiphany.”

“Imagining the people in Earl’s Clemente classroom opened my eyes to a reality that should have been obvious: all people deserve a good humanities education, are richer for it. And some people may even be saved by it,” she says. “I don’t apologize for that language. Since being directly involved in this education since 2005, I have seen many, many people turn their lives completely around because of this one course.”


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MEET IRENE SALAS
2014 Graduate of Free Minds in Austin, Texas

 

On the last night of class this year in Free Minds, Irene Salas addressed the students she had mentored since August. “Thank you for your courage,” she told them. “Thank you for your persistence. And most of all, thank you for bringing your voices – your individual voices – to the room. I love to hear all of y’all because it makes the world a lot bigger.”

It was the desire to make her own world bigger that led Irene to Free Minds in the summer of 2013. She was just turning 40 with a husband, two children, and an extended family she helped care for. She had hungered to go to college, but had never even taken a class. In fact, no one in her family ever had. Then her husband Benny received an email about Free Minds at his job in maintenance at the City of Austin. He shared it with Irene.

“I told him it was too good to be true. Who’s going to pay your tuition, pay your books, watch your kids, and feed you? C’mon.”


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A Community Health Center may seem like an unlikely place to learn about the arts and humanities, but really, when you think about it, the notion is not so implausible. At Codman Square Health Center, located in the working class neighborhood of Dorchester in Boston, the focus is always on the whole health of a patient.

To that end, if a health center patient requires a prescription for intellectual sustenance, Codman Square helps fill that need with a twice weekly course on humanities and art. The course, called the Clemente Course, is one of 31 given around the country (and one of five in Massachusetts). It offers a cultural dive into the great books and ideas of world history — Socrates, Shakespeare, Aristotle, Plato, Homer and writers such as Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston. Students are also exposed to a wide-ranging swath of art history, from Mesopotamia to Pablo Picasso and Andy Warhol. There are classes in moral philosophy, literature, American history, art history and writing. The students meet for two semesters. To be eligible for admission a student cannot have graduated from college and must live in a household getting by on less than what is considered a living wage in Boston (about $13.42 an hour for one person). The classes are free. Once the course is complete each student receives six credits from Bard College in New York State that can be transferred to another learning institution.


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Giant kinetic pinwheels in Whirligig Park, NC

Photograph by Bruce DeBoer for Washington Post

By David Montgomery

The wind is up in Wilson, N.C. Giant pinwheels and propellers start spinning atop tall and spindly kinetic sculptures called whirligigs, which have been erected on a village green being developed into Whirligig Park. The rotating wheels drive chains, belts and shafts that, in turn, set in motion whimsical characters and shapes. Little bicycle riders and unicyclists pedal and wave, helicopters hover, birds flap their wings, fighter planes change course.

The fantastic contraptions have been fashioned from the discard pile of American civilization. A freshly painted blue fan, 19 feet in diameter, spins majestically thanks to the graceful repurposing of the rear axle of a truck, while another big pinwheel is adorned with 96 shiny metal milkshake cups. Vollis Simpson, the junkyard artist who built these figures, worked from a palette that also included ...


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The nationally acclaimed NPR word game show, “Says You!” will present a community show benefiting the Jefferson Clemente Course, a free college humanities course for low-income adults in Port Townsend, WA.


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Jeb Wyman presents

Coming Home: How the Humanities Help Soldiers Find Meaning after War

Key Center Library, Lakebay, WA



What is the true nature of war, and how does the experience of war affect the human heart? How have the myths and realities of combat, and the invisible wounds of war, been portrayed over the ages?


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Congratulations to Jean Cheney and her colleagues from the Venture Course in Utah.


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Harlem Clemente Professor of Literature G.D. Peters, just named as Lehman College's Adjunct Professor of the Year.


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As the academic year opens at colleges across the country, one important group of students will be underrepresented in classrooms: returning adults. The missing students may have both the abilities and the motivation to pursue degrees. But many are shut out of higher education because of debt owed to schools they attended years, even decades, earlier.


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December 2, 2016.  Marina van Zuylen was on a panel representing Clemente, “Great Books” and Civic Education, at a conference to celebrate the centennial of John Dewey’s classic Democracy and Education (1916) at Columbia’s Center for American Studies. 


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The Foundation recently had the opportunity to connect two of the grantees in our Liberal Arts Beyond the Academy special initiative, to talk about their experiences of bringing the humanities well beyond traditional classroom settings. Lela Hilton, Program Director of the Clemente Course in the Humanities, Inc., and Ann Kowal Smith, Founder & Executive Director of Books@Work, agreed to let us eavesdrop on their conversation. The Clemente Course in the Humanities brings free humanities education to people living in economic distress.


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Back in 2008 Adaline Russell joined a handful of other students at the first Clemente course offered at VIU. The grandmother of six vividly recalls the first days she became a VIU student. She says during that time in her life she was severely depressed. Despite this, when she heard about the Clemente course she found the strength to put her name in.

“At the time my mental health support worker drove me to and from the classroom because I couldn’t get there on my own,” said Russell. “After three weeks we were on our way home and she looked at me and said: ‘My goodness, you have a smile on your face!’ I thought about it and said: ‘Yes, I am really enjoying what I’m learning.’ I was finally being stimulated intellectually and I realized that was what was missing from my life.”


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As the academic year opens at colleges across the country, one important group of students will be underrepresented in classrooms: returning adults. The missing students may have both the abilities and the motivation to pursue degrees. But many are shut out of higher education because of debt owed to schools they attended years, even decades, earlier.
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Join us for a conversation featuring Harlem resident and best-selling author Richard Price, with leaders from three independent not-for-profit programs offering literacy, education, drug, and anti-gun guidance to our most disadvantaged children and young people.


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Tamara Thompson Moore was at a crossroads in her life when she was pressured, she says, to apply for the Odyssey Project.
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Port Townsend, WA: For Port Townsend City Council, two young new council members will replace two who are retiring. For Position 6, Amy Smith, beat her opponent, by a 71.5 percent to 28 percent margin. Amy is a graduate of the Jefferson Clemente Course: "I took this course as a wayward youth; it changed my life."


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Free Minds, a program of Foundation Communities, is a free, 6 credit college humanities course, for mostly low-income adults. The program is unique because most adults who return to school take skill-based courses, rather than humanities courses. To lower common barriers to education, Free Minds also provides a warm dinner before every evening class, and free childcare.
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This is one of the four Clemente Courses in Massachusetts sponsored by Mass Humanities.


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Halifax Humanities helps those who can’t afford higher education


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WORCESTER – After the Worcester Art Museum closed its doors to the public for the day last Tuesday, a small group of scholars set out on a private tour.
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Should the state allow undocumented immigrants to pay in-state tuition rates?


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Aristotle described agriculture as “the first and most proper parts of domestic management” in his Poetics. Kafi Dixon, a farmer and student of the Clemente Course, understands the primacy of food, and yet it is her study of the humanities that allowed her to pursue her dream of providing healthy food to her community.
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Since 2001, I have taught American history in the Boston Clemente Course, a college humanities program accredited by Bard College and offered free of charge to lower income adults through the Codman Square Health Center in Dorchester, Massachusetts. I also teach at Harvard. The driving distance between Harvard Square and Codman Square is less than eight miles, but these neighborhoods can sometimes feel like they're a world apart.
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WASHINGTON, D.C. — The mentor and mentee sat in a room in the Latin American Youth Center, dreaming of a future neither knew how to fully attain.

“How many jobs do you think you’ve applied for?” Jaime Roberts asked her mentee.

Manuel Hernandez laughed nervously. The question seemed so important, but the goal seemed so futile.

“I stopped counting,” Hernandez said. “Maybe 12? Maybe more?”


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She may be an expert on Jane Austen and 19th century literature, but University of Wisconsin-Madison English Professor Emily Auerbach's real passion is helping people use education as a springboard out of poverty.
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Please join me in congratulating Associate Professor Mark Santow from the History Department as the May recipient of CARES (Chancellor's Award Recognizing Excellence in Service).
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There is a recurring debate that has spilled onto the pages of mainstream media lately about the value of studying the humanities and whether the humanities are "in decline." The two issues are connected, as cultural critic Benjamin Winterhalter pointed out in a terrific essay in The Atlantic online earlier this summer.
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We Are One Inside Out Project and Clemente Humanities course builds student confidence, fosters future leaders.
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For years, Tim McCarthy has lectured students in Dorchester, in a program where he now has an endowed chair. Read Harvard Gazette Story


A group of East High School students are turning their school “Inside Out” this weekend by showcasing the rich ethnic diversity found at their school. Their intent is to encourage mutual respect and unity and to spark conversation about the changing face of Salt Lake City.

The students are members of the new Clemente Humanities course taught at East High and led by Jorge Rojas.

Read more at 24saltlake.com


Last month, I attended a college-level philosophy class at LAYC where students discussed Plato's concept of school as a place to create and question. Philosophy classes at LAYC? Read post on layc-dc.org.


The idea came to him in prison. At work in the early 1990s on a book about poverty in America, Earl Shorris, X’54, met an inmate named Viniece Walker. He asked her, "Why do you think people are poor?"

Read Article



Craig Williams had always dreamed of going to college, but at 55, he had given up his dream. Now Craig is one of 30 classmates in CV’s Harlem Clemente Course, part of a national program that provides high level humanities courses free of charge to disadvantaged adults.


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Esta iniciativa del Concilio de Humanidades de Illinois, ha ofrecido de manera gratuita cursos en las humanidades en inglés y en español para jóvenes y adultos, principalmente aquellos de bajos recursos y con limitaciones de acceso a la educación. El programa además ofrece materiales, libros, pases de transporte y cuidado de niños sin costo.
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We are so proud of our graduates!
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Tineisha Scott remembers running out of the house in the middle of the night with no shoes on, scared, hiding to get away from the abuse and drug use overrunning her home. As a young man, Corey Saffold found himself racially profiled. Sherri Bester suffered from PTSD and anxiety so extreme she got severe panic attacks during tests.

These three Madisonians faced personal struggles and obstacles that often seemed insurmountable. Fortunately, they also each encountered a class syllabus that included Plato, Whitman, Dickens, Shakespeare and Toni Morrison.


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OGDEN — Twelve months ago, Susan Mosteller found herself desperate and considering a drastic life change.

The Kaysville resident said after 13 years of domestic abuse, she was questioning her value and her potential. Despite being jobless, she was considering leaving her marriage.


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I was a Creon until I realized that it put me against Antigone. Now I'm not so sure. Last week, listening to public radio, I heard about the protests against the burial of Tamerlan Tsarnaev.
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Just south of the University of Chicago, at the AKArama Center in Woodlawn, a dozen or so people gather in a seminar room. The room is reminiscent of those in which Nobel laureates and eager college students swap ideas, giving the UofC its reputation as a center for intellectualism. It is sparsely adorned, its tables pushed together to form a hollow square. It is a room designed for focused discussion, for digging into texts, and for exchanging ideas. But the students here are different. Their average age is thirty-nine. Most of them are women. All live at least 150% below the poverty line.


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In "The Art of Freedom," Earl Shorris describes his efforts to establish a set of courses that would teach the core texts of Western civilization to people living in poverty, whose school experience had scanted the canon or skipped it entirely.


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Plato's "Euthyphro" can be tough going for anyone. Amy Thomas Elder struggled last year to make the case that the thorny philosophical text had anything to do with the lives of South Side high school freshmen.


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Do the classics matter? The Common Core State Standards—new, K-12 education rubrics that were rolled out in 2010 and have been implemented in 45 states and Washington, D.C.—seem conflicted about the answer.
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Amy Thomas Elder lives and breathes education. Has been doing so for most of her 49 years.


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Announcing the release of Earl Shorris' The Art of Freedom: Teaching Humanities to the Poor
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Graduates of the Oddyssey Project in Illinois develop photography skills to tell their stories, experiences, perspectives, and emotions.
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October 2012 edition of The Odyssey Project's Journal, In Media Res. There is a great article about Earl Shorris starting on page 6.
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They’re the great, eternal ideas which shape the way we think about our lives, our culture and ourselves, but for most of us, the window to learn about the “liberal arts” was open for a few early college years, if that window was even open at all.
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HIGH SCHOOL was a lost cause for Priscilla Rivera, a child of the downcast mill city of Holyoke, Mass. “I went to school with the attitude, ‘Oh, this is hard, and I’m not going to do it,’ ” Ms. Rivera said recently. “After a while, the teachers gave up on me. They were like, ‘If you don’t want to do your work, just put your head down.’ ”
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From the Spanish Language Odyssey Project in Chicago. (Note that towards the end of the article, the Google Translate tool translates "credits" as "loans.")
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Earl Shorris, who died last week, was that rarest of Americans: the patriotic intellectual. I don't mean the sort of patriotism one finds on cable television, nor the hermetic intellectualism of academic conferences.
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There are 18 of us around a table on the second floor of the Kingston City Public Library.
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"We've met for three hours on Wednesday nights from September 7 to now..."
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Most 66 years olds have retirement on their minds. Not Sherrie Kimball, though.


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"When this old world starts getting me down," as the old song goes, and the usual antidotes -- family, friends, writing, and music -- can't soothe my soul, I take comfort in knowing there's one place I can always go that's akin to being "Up on the Roof." And that's my annual engagement with the inspiring students enrolled in UW-Madison's Odyssey Project.
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“We're going to be breaking records this year in terms of attendance and completion,” says Emily Auerbach, a UW-Madison professor of English and director of the Odyssey Project. “This year all 30 students will be getting the full six credits with nobody getting an incomplete. That's never happened before.”


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A newly released five-year study shows that Mass Humanities' Clemente Course is changing more than just minds—it's changing lives.
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I saw a posting in the local Bay State Banner for the Clemente Course in the Humanities. Initially I called my friend Gillian to see if she would be interested in being a participant. She said what about you?
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Many teenage mothers who have dropped out of high school and live in poverty likely have their hands full providing for their children. Pondering the ideas of ancient philosophers and writing essays about art history may be low on the priority list for many of them
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The Warrior’s Heart, the Life and Legacy of Joan of Arc
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COLLEEN CARROLL worked for years at a sawmill in northern British Columbia, until, in 1993, a lung condition forced her to retire. The following year, a stroke decimated her short-term memory, so she moved to Vancouver to be closer to her sons, whom she had raised on her own. She rented a $350 bachelor apartment at the corner of Main and Hastings, the heart of the Downtown Eastside. “I was in pretty bad shape,” she says. When she heard that Humanities 101 (Hum for short) was taking students, she signed up. She had always wanted to go to university but never had the money.
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HOLYOKE, Mass. — The statistics don’t paint a pretty picture of Holyoke. It has the highest rates of birth, poverty, unemployment and high school dropouts, respectively, in the state of Massachusetts. So why is The Care Center, a Holyoke organization that helps poor women get their GED, using Shakespeare and Plato as their guides?
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Teen mothers are getting a taste of the prep school experience, replete with studying the classics from Dante to Shakespeare, through an innovative program in Massachusetts.

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The Holyoke program is based on the belief that exposure to art, literature, history and philosophy can be life-changing for young people who have grown up in what executive director Anne Teschner calls "the quicksand of poverty."

Pictured left to right, Brendaliz Rivera, who is working on her GED, Anne Teschner, executive director, and Tashia Davis, a student at Holyoke Community College, will represent The Care Center of Holyoke when the organization receives a National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award from first lady Michelle Obama in Washington.

 


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Charleston Clemente Project: Hope Through the Humanities
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NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- Their approach to helping those stuck at the bottom of society involves enriching the mind to foster confidence and a love of learning.
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A lifelong learner, Ethel Stafford graduates from Extension School with plans for new career.
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A benefit for the Trident Clemente course
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Eighth Annual Event as Inspiring and Uplifting as Ever
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Humanities in Perspective graduates 15
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The Champaign-Urbana, and North and South Side of Chicago Courses are now recruiting. For more information, please check the course sites in our Course Directory, under COURSES.
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Edgar Allan Poe Play to Benefit Charleston Clemente Course at TTC
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The Civic Knowledge Project presents, "Taking Education to the Streets"
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It Takes Courage to Complete Clemente
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Homeless, disadvantaged soak up knowledge in humanities class
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A panel discussion featuring distinguished representatives from leading community organizations in Chicago involved in the development of Promise Zone initiatives:

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In Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, students bring rich perspectives to the study of university-level humanities.
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Years ago I sat in yet another interminable college-wide meeting concerning looming budget cuts. Years ago! "Make a case for the Humanities," the President challenged us, quite a believer in the arts herself. I couldn't think of any other way to put my answer: "Study of the Humanities just might save the planet." I am more convinced than ever.


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Halifax Humanities Fundraiser February 17, 2011.
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This National Newsletter provides a space where all at the Clemente Australia sites can share their journeys with students, lecturers, Learning Partners, program coordinators and many supporters.



Artist Jonathan Green to talk to Clemente graduates at the Charleston Clemente Course graduation Dec. 16
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The University of Wisconsin-Madison Odyssey Project Director Professor Emily Auerbach believes that higher education should be open to all those eager to learn and willing to work, not just to a privileged few.

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A recent visit to Argentina
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Chicago Tribune article by Barbara Brotman.
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Madison Times article by A. David Dahmer.
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Standard.net article by Allison Barlow Hess about the Venture program.
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Kate Brown writes about Southern Utah University's new Venture program.
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Letter from Memory Holloway about the New Bedford Clemente Program's museum trip.
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Korea Times article by Bae Ji-sook about humanities for the homeless.
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Graduation Speech by Halifax Humanities Graduate.
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Vancouver Foundation article by Paul Heraty about the Nanaimo Clemente Program.
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