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

class of children and teachers at the Samteo Social Welfare Center
Story

Perpetuating Good

As a first-generation low-income student, studying abroad was always a moon shot for me. But with SNF Paideia’s funding I was able to… Read More
colorful graphic of concentric circles
Podcast

Self Care, Community Care, and Social Change: Immigration and Human Rights Law

Gen Z is remarkable in terms of their social activism. Before they could vote, many had already participated in protest marches, letter and social media campaigns, and outspoken advocacy around issues they are passionate about. Direct action can be empowering and marching with others can produce strong feelings of cohesiveness and connection around shared ideals. Yet at the same time, social and political change can be slow, and advocacy without results can be deeply discouraging, especially if the issues at hand are existential. How do we care for ourselves during the slow, challenging work of social change? This series interviews Penn alumni working to change some of America's most intractable social problems to ask them how are they taking care of themselves so that they can sustain their fight on behalf of others?Read More
Friends sitting next to lake watching sunset
Podcast

How Perceptions of Support Network Impacts Emotional, Physical and Social Wellbeing of College Students

In this special episode of the The PARK Podcast, Steven-John Kounoupis and Venus Tian of the Icarus Research Group weave together academic research and first-account interviews to deliver a multi-dimensional conversation on social isolation and mental health. The discussion focuses on the nature of social isolation and social networks in college, sharing diverse perspective on how socialization impacts health and how social wellness impacts our ability to have strong connections with others. Read More

Upcoming Events

Oct 6

Fall Break - Walk Around Philadelphia

'Walk Around Philadelphia', designed by Philadelphia based artist and Penn alumnus JJ Tiziou, will involve walking part of the perimeter of the city of Philadelphia. Reflection SNF Paideia’s pillars of dialogue, wellness, service, and citizenship, the retreat welcomes Penn students, staff, and faculty to share a fall pilgrimage along the edges of Philadelphia.Read More
Oct 17

A Conversation with Congressman Will Hurd

Join us to hear from former intelligence officer and US congressman Will Hurd about the state of politics, how to fix what’s broken and… Read More
Oct 19

Reimagining Faith, Gender, Race and Nationalism within Mediated Spaces

Acclaimed theologian and activist Dr. Sabrina Dent will look at the complex ways in which our faith, gender, and racial identities converge and conflict with our sense of national identity, particularly in mediated discourse. Dr. Dent will share her own experiences navigating these constructs while also offering ways in which we can reimagine the role of social identities in the formation of collective ones.Read More

In the News

Michael Delli Carpini
In the News

The Dean Has Left the Building: Michael Delli Carpini Heads into Retirement

Delli Carpini reflects back on his 19-year tenure at Annenberg and looks to the future.Learn More
headshot of Antoilyn Nguyen
In the News

A summer optimizing obstetrics health care

Second-year student Antoilyn Nguyen spent their summer as a researcher analyzing labor and delivery charts as part of a long-term cohort study to standardize labor induction for better and more equitable results.Learn More
Jamelle Bouie
In the News

The Constitution is the crisis: Jamelle Bouie on the state of the U.S.

The New York Times columnist hosted a talk, ‘Way Past Normal: American Politics in 2022 and Beyond,’ hosted by The Andrea Mitchell Center, The SNF Paideia Program, and The Government and Politics Association.Learn More

Register for classes.

Find the SNF Paideia Program designated courses on PennInTouch by choosing “Designated SNF Paideia Program Course” under the Program menu.

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