The liberal arts and sciences have their roots in the cultural legacy of ancient Greece and Rome.
Western literature, philosophy, history and many civic and political institutions still thriving today emerged in these “classical” cultures, as did systematic analysis of the natural world and wide-ranging speculation about its human inhabitants. Our sensibilities about art and architecture continue to be influenced by forms developed in the ancient world, which remain evident in painting and sculpture as well as structures as diverse as theaters, university campuses, museums, city and other civic halls, athletic stadiums and shopping malls.
While the academic study of Greek and Roman antiquity is traditionally rooted in philology, a mastery of the Greek and Latin languages, our Classical Studies program is anchored by the College’s Program in Greece. This unique program, which has been conducted since 1970, consists of an intensive, six week preparatory course on campus (Greek Civilization 201) and a three-course travel tour of museums and archaeological sites across the landscapes of ancient Greece. The study-abroad program takes place each year from mid-March to June during the spring semester. In Greece, the program covers the Bronze age, the Classical period and the Byzantine-Medieval era. Students taking part in the Program in Greece gain four credits, which count as electives or may be applied to a number of major and minor programs at the College, including Art, History, Philosophy, Religion, Sociology and Anthropology, Theater, Communication and Classical Studies.
Students wishing to obtain the minor in Classical Studies supplement these four course credits with two additional credits selected from a series of elective courses (see Program Requirements). The Classical Studies program encourages students to pursue their interests in ancient civilizations, art, philosophy, history, museum studies, comparative literature, political theory or religion, among many other possibilities, by combining participation in the Greece program with relevant electives from appropriate departments and programs on campus.