Student Testimonials

What Summer Academy students say about the program:

“Even things that you think you know turn up to have a side you never noticed before. He [Archimedes] talks about a circle as an infinitely sided figure. No one knew exactly what to do with that. There are as many new and exciting ways to understand this as there are people in the class. Here [at St. John’s], there is no rote knowledge, no one insisting that one interpretation has to be the answer. There is always something different to see. Personally, I don’t know what to think of geometry anymore!”

“Where in most other colleges professors investigate whatever they are particularly interested [in], at Saint John’s the tutors (professors) conducted classes with detailed knowledge of the original texts we studied and discussed in small groups. They helped and encouraged students [to] develop a personal engagement with the readings, and participate in discussions, freely stating their own individual opinion. At St. John’s the tutors’ passionate approach did not dominate the discussion…instead, together we learned about philosophy, music, languages, and math."

“[St. John’s College] is a truly special place even among other liberal arts colleges. It’s not like the others where you just get lectures. It allows kids to live and breathe the lessons they are taught.”

“I really love everything it has to offer. I love the educational philosophy. I love the discussion based learning. I love the student enthusiasm.”

“I applied because I want to have the St. John’s experience. I’m going to a different college but I really wanted to see what it was like. I got to talk with a bunch of people fascinated by the program.”

“It is an opportunity to relate to people and explain your opinions. It teaches you to think on your own rather than just to memorize. It puts that idea into practice by asking broad questions with lots of answers and really promotes learning.”

“The Summer Academy is seeing what St. John’s is about and having fun."

“It is an interesting process of sharing your own ideas and learning from others.”

“It was a great experience; I’d definitely suggest it to others. I learned a lot, thank you!”

“I liked being exposed to things I probably wouldn’t have read on my own.”

“An experience that is unique, and different from high school norms.”

“The book shop: it is epic beyond any other.”

“Seminars were fabulous! They were full of interesting and relevant discussion that I have never been able to have anywhere else.”

“The style of class seems to remedy a lot of things that I found frustrating in high school.”

“Like-minded individuals discussing fantastic texts, crazy-cool!”

“I didn’t think there could be so much depth and so much to discuss in so many subjects, so it really opened my eyes.”

“No more spoon-feeding education.”

“Many questions were raised that provoked me to think critically.”

“The other students were enthusiastic and extremely ready to learn. It made me feel welcome.”

"I have gained this from philosophy: that I do without being commanded what others do only from fear of the law."
- Aristotle