Educating the whole person

How Do I Pronounce Paideia?

Integrating Wellness, Service, and Citizenship Through Dialogue

παιδεία (Paideia) is an ancient Greek word meant to capture the moral, intellectual, and physical education of an ideal member of the Athenian city-state—that is, “educating the whole person.” It is also translated as “educating citizens,” since they saw private and public lives as inseparable. This vision of education and citizenship was limited to a minority of the population, however. Through the intellectual and financial support of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF), the SNF Paideia Program reimagines a more inclusive and equitable version of this ancient Greek approach to education, serving as a hub for civic dialogue in undergraduate education at Penn. In collaboration with other Penn programs and organizations, SNF Paideia provides curricular and co-curricular opportunities for all students to develop the knowledge, skills, and ethical frameworks necessary to be informed, engaged, and effective community members, and to lead fulfilling and integrated personal, professional, and civic lives.

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Courses

Courses for the holistic student.

SNF Paideia designated courses, designed and taught by faculty from all of Penn’s twelve Schools, integrate students’ personal, professional, and civic development. Open to all Penn undergraduates, these courses focus on dialogue, wellness, service, and citizenship from different disciplinary and interdisciplinary perspectives.

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Fellowships

SNF Paideia Fellows.

While individual Paideia courses are designed to be taken by any of Penn’s 10,000 undergraduates, the program also provides a more structured and immersive experience for a select number of SNF Paideia Fellows.

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Initiatives

Connecting theory and practice.

In addition to courses, fellowships, and events, SNF Paideia serves as the home for several co-sponsored initiatives that connect classroom learning with real-world dialogue and public problem-solving.

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The Latest from SNF Paideia

Blog

Integrating Academic, Civic, and Personal Passions through the Fellows Program

Spending time between her hometown of Little Rock, AR and her grandparents’ home in Huntsville, AR, Celia Kreth (C’23) grew up experiencing the differences between urban and rural lifestyles. Looking back, she can see how this exposure to divergent cultural views fostered a deep appreciation for history, communication styles, and the impact that specific word choice may have on the outcome of a situation.

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From the Blog

Event Recap

Skillshare: Scholarly Writing & Civic Tech

Kaitlyn is the author of “The Public Sector Pivot: How Gen Z Will Lead a Renaissance in Public Service”, which discusses the role of young people in the public sector post-pandemic, and how to improve the public sector talent pipeline for college students.  To write her book, Kaitlyn interviewed dozens of passionate people who work in government to tell stories about motivations to enter the public sector and potential areas of growth, such as civic tech.Read More
Event Recap

Biology & Public Interest: A Fireside Chat

The PIT@Penn student group recently held a fireside chat with Dr. Kayla Davis and Dr. George Demiris, who are both work in the intersection between public interest tech and biology.  Dr. Davis has been heavily involved in STEM outreach and science policy, while much of Dr. Demiris’ work focuses on research to use tech solutions to address aging related issues.Read More
Podcast

Communities of Practice at Penn: Restorative Practice

Our final episode in the series on communities of practice features a conversation between Dr. Lia Howard and Pablo Cerdera, associate director of Restorative Practices at the University of Pennsylvania. Pablo shares about how he and his colleagues at Restorative Practices work to provide a safe, confidential, supportive space for all parties involved in incidents of harm. He talks about circle practice as a way of strengthening connections in a community to prevent harm as well as to endure conflict when it inevitably happens.Read More

Upcoming Events

In the News

In the News

What can browser history inadvertently reveal about a person’s health?

The Penn-CMU Digital Health Privacy Initiative is trying to answer that question by mapping third-party tracking across the online health ecosystem. Their work shows possible implications for ad targeting, credit scores, insurance coverage, and more.Learn More
In the News

Course Shows Students How Washington Really Works

Penn and George Mason University students traveled to Washington, D.C. every Friday this spring for a class that gives the inside scoop on policymaking inside the Beltway.Learn More
John Bolton sitting next to Lexi Boccuzzi on a stage.
In the News

Penn Political Union in Conversation with John Bolton

The former U.S. national security adviser was on campus as part of a series of speaker events that promote the free expression of differing views and provide a forum for civil dialogue across the political divide.Learn More

Apply for a fellowship.

Students may apply or be nominated for an SNF Paideia Fellowship in the spring semester of their first year. Applications are due Sunday, February 27.

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