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 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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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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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

student standing by plaque in Naksan Park

Perpetuating Good

Venturing out of her comfort zone, Lynn Larabi, C’24, found herself in Seoul, South Korea for her first international work experience. Through the Global Research and Internship Program (GRIP) at Penn, Lynn was hired as an intern for JHSustain, a private company focused on community impact-facing initiatives. Her assignment was to assist in the process of developing more sustainable solutions in Leyte’s water management infrastructure, natural disaster forecasting, as well as community training. The opportunity was funded as part of Lynn’s SNF Paideia Fellowship and relates to her interests as a political science and anthropology double major.

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From the Blog

city of Jerusalem with sun set

Unlikely Friendships: Identity and Difficult Conversations

Excerpts from Edited Transcript Dr. Lia Howard: Welcome, David and Laila. Would you tell us a little bit about who you are giving us?… Read More
Emily Dunuwila in meditative pose

What is the Role of the Body in Academia?

Mindfulness and Body-Based Practices in a College Classroom One such opportunity is the SNF Paideia designated class, EDUC 251:… Read More
An American flag waves in front of the Supreme Court building on Capitol Hill in Washington, on Nov. 2, 2020. The Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two cases that could decide the future of affirmative action in college admissions on Monday, Oct. 31, 2022, in Washington, D.C. (Image: AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)
Event Recap

Experts Discuss Recent Changes to the Supreme Court and Impact on Constitutional Law

A moderated panel discussion on topics including, but not limited to, the history of the Supreme Court, the creation of a conservative supermajority, the shadow docket, public opinion, and possible modifications to the structure of the Court including term limits and Court expansion.Read More

Upcoming Events

Feb 6

Race and Media, Film Representations with Maori Holmes

  SNF Paideia Program & the Asian America Across the Disciplines Series Spring 2023 present: American Race: A… Read More
Feb 9

How do people reason about the constitution?

How do people decide what rights are guaranteed by the Constitution? Can people tell the difference between rights they think people should… Read More
Feb 13

Asian America Across the Disciplines with Naw Doh

SNF Paideia Program & the Asian America Across the Disciplines Series Spring 2023 present: American Race: A Philadelphia Story -… Read More

In the News

2023 Marshall Scholars Sarah Kane, Amy Krimm, and Carson Eckhard.
In the News

Two Penn fourth-years and an alumna named 2023 Marshall Scholars

University of Pennsylvania fourth-years Sarah Kane and Amy Krimm and 2021 graduate Carson Eckhard have been named 2023 Marshall Scholars. Established by the British government, the Marshall Scholarship funds as many as three years of study for a graduate degree in any field at an institution in the United Kingdom.Learn More
Ezekiel Emanuel
In the News

Franklin’s World

Ezekiel Emanuel wanted to take a deep dive on Benjamin Franklin. So he developed a course about “the greatest person born in North America.”Learn More
What We’re Learning From Campus Leaders
In the News

What We’re Learning From Campus Leaders About How to Bridge Differences

Learning and exchanging ideas in community can help higher education leaders fight polarization—and so make colleges more inclusive and welcoming.Learn More

Suggest a course.

We are eager to hear from faculty about classes they would like offered under the SNF Paideia Program.

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