9 Top Reasons Why St. John's College is the Right Choice

Considering whether to attend a small liberal arts college or a big university? You’ve got over 250 options, but here’s why you might want to take a closer look at St. John’s College in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Historical Roots

Just like Harvard and the College of William & Mary, St. John’s College has been on the U.S. educational map since its foundation in 1696. Initially set up as King William’s School in Maryland, it holds the title of America’s third oldest educational institution.

Accolades for the Santa Fe Campus

St. John’s College expanded to Santa Fe in 1964 and welcomed 81 students in its inaugural freshman class. According to Inside Higher Ed, the Santa Fe campus is a “gem in American higher education,” and the Los Angeles Times states that it ” hovers like a high-achieving angel above the landscape of American higher education.”

The St. John’s Learning Model

At St. John’s, education takes center stage. Classes cap at 21 students, often with dual faculty involvement. Courses focus on interactive dialogues about influential books and big ideas, steered by nationally respected tutors. Here, they’re not called “professors” because they collaborate with students rather than lecture at them.

Students dive into over 200 seminal texts, covering 3,000 years of human ideas in fields like philosophy, literature, math, science, and even music. In this cozy classroom setting, students engage in dialogue, tackle opposing views, and refine their own thinking. The ultimate aim at St. John’s isn’t to get high grades but to cultivate a genuine understanding of foundational texts, complex ideas, and interdisciplinary knowledge.

Summer Enrichment Programs

St. John’s has a variety of summer courses that focus on the Great Books, such as the Summer Academy aimed at high-schoolers aged 15–18 contemplating St. John’s as their future college. Additionally, there’s the Summer Classics for adults and a Teachers Institute. These short-term programs offer a snapshot of St. John’s educational approach and its scenic Santa Fe campus.

New students can also benefit from the Pritzker Promise Bridge Program, which helps new Johnnies adapt to the academic environment by fostering study skills, providing mentorship, and facilitating early connections with faculty and classmates before semester start.

St. John's
St. John’s College students on a snow adventure in Santa Fe’s Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

Vibrant Campus Life

St. John’s campus bustles with activity. Students can participate in a myriad of clubs, societies, and events, creating enduring friendships. Notable facilities and programs include an Outdoor Program, intramural sports, a pottery workshop, an archery squad, and a highly-regarded bookstore and cafe. For more, check out their video tour.

Santa Fe Living

St. John’s is located in Santa Fe, the Southwest’s cultural hub. The city is a melting pot of Spanish colonial history and Native American traditions, known for its thriving arts scene, bustling film industry, and ground-breaking advances in science and alternative healthcare. Santa Fe, America’s highest-elevation city, lies at 7,000 feet above sea level and is flanked by the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, offering numerous outdoor activities.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

The college is committed to affordability. New Mexican students receive grants of $13,000, and Pell grants are fully matched, offering nearly an extra $10,000 in aid for the most financially strained. Merit scholarships and funded internships are also part of their financial support system. If you live in Las Cruces and are considering going to a private college, that grant is a great feature to take into account.

The college has an expanding network of accomplished alumni actively involved in career mentorship for both current students and graduates, ensuring the legacy of St. John’s continues to thrive.

Advanced Studies

After completing your Bachelor’s degree in liberal arts, you can further your education with either a Master of Arts in liberal arts or in Eastern Classics.

St. John's College students taking part in senior oral exams.

Application Process

Applicants engage in a unique, discussion-centric application process, which includes interviews with an admissions representative and a faculty member to discuss books and ideas. A more conventional written application process is also available. A campus tour is recommended to ascertain if St. John’s is the right fit.

If you’ve completed your homework on St. John’s College, you may believe your search is over. However, this is only the launch pad for your most remarkable adventure.

Story Sponsored by St. John’s College

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Posted by LasCruces.com

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