The Balance and the Book: Laboratory and Natural Sciences at St. John’s

The lab program at St. John’s is one of a kind. All students study the sciences (including physics, astronomy, biology, chemistry, and more) as part of our one, interdisciplinary major. There is no separate science building which marks sciences apart from the humanities — although we do have separate lab classrooms, equipped with fixings like…

Why so contrarian?

St. John’s College takes great pride in having been described by the New York Times as “the most contrarian college in America.” But it’s a tricky, sticky word, “contrarian.” It carries all sorts of different connotations, depending on the reader, so it may be hard to discern what exactly it is that St. John’s is…

St. John’s: Not Just for Introverts

It takes all kinds to make the world go around! St. John’s thrives on this balance in our close community and small classes. Whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, the college can be a paradise. An important part of the college experience is defining your own identity. No longer are you defined solely by…

Beating Homesickness at College

Freshman year is a time of substantial changes for everyone, no matter where they come from. You can’t help but be changed by it. You’ve been plucked from the life you know and thrust firmly into the newly adult college world, poised in front of a lot of lessons to learn. As an alum of…

Why Choose a Small College?

Choosing a college is a complicated decision, made up of a lot of factors, and one of the things that every college-bound student should consider is the size of college they want. Going to a small college is a unique experience. It might not be what media and popular ideas would make you think of…

The Shorthand of Emotion: Music at St. John’s College

In the beginning, there were drums. Then, there were the chants sung in medieval abbeys, and then, harmony, and the great composers of the 18th and 19th centuries. As St. John’s students, we discover all of that in our music program. The first song we learn, in our freshman chorus, is often medieval. The first…

The Art of Storytelling

Looking through the camera lens, the light kit shining on my back like a halo, I wondered how I found heaven in a senior common room. My name is Armando, and I’m currently a Graduate Institute student at St. John’s College. Last month, the winter season had me itching for a project to break up…

4+1: Adding an MA to your St. John’s education

The undergraduate Program here at St. John’s is in many ways just the beginning. It provides the forum for your first few encounters with so many texts, so many questions, and so many ways of looking at the world, and so it’s inevitable that things aren’t tied up with a neat little bow by the…

Fall Recruitment and Travel in the Time of a Pandemic

March 2020, news of a pandemic was taking hold all over the world. Students packed up their things and moved out of their dorms. Staff gathered their supplies and laptops and prepared to work from home for a few weeks. Spring admitted student events were rapidly converted to webinars. Things shifted quickly and schools, students,…

Goethe in a Box

A few weeks ago, we sent our incoming freshmen a surprise in a box. The box contains seeds, soil pellets, peat pots, plant markers, a mini journal/sketchbook, and some colored pencils. Our goal in sending this box is to invite students to step away from their screens and to observe and engage with plants and…