Sophomore Seminars

In October 2016, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation awarded St. Lawrence a four-year grant totaling $800,000 to support the Sophomore Journeys program which will offer a series of second-year student seminars fostering integrated and varied learning opportunities. These seminars are one means to achieve the goals of the broader Sophomore Initiative whose comprehensive approach addresses not only student learning but the environment in which learning happens in an effort to build more richness and intentionality into the second-year experience.

The Mellon Sophomore Journeys Grant Steering Committee now invites proposals for new Sophomore Seminar courses. The purpose of this grant is to empower students to develop a sense of intellectual purpose and encourage them to forge new connections with faculty, staff, and other students. We are seeking seminars that challenge traditional disciplinary boundaries, are pedagogically innovative, address broad intellectual questions, and include intensive mentoring.

Sophomore Seminars should:

  • Engage students through innovative course design and teaching;
  • Provide students with multiple opportunities to collaborate; and
  • Facilitate the exploration and synthesis of a range of perspectives and approaches.

Examples of course design components that help achieve these goals include but are not limited to: preparation for research and creative opportunities; collaborative and team-based projects; problem-based learning; and critical exploration of digital technologies, methods, and culture.

The Sophomore Journeys grant provides flexibility in the types of courses to be designed and offers course development stipends of $625 (half-unit course) or $1250 (full-unit course). In certain situations the grant may support teaching replacement costs to enable to instructor/faculty member to teach a new Sophomore Journeys course in place of one of their regular departmental/program courses.