As part of your First-Year Experience, you will take a core of liberal arts classes that will form the foundation of your education. With a group of about 18 fellow students, a team of teachers and librarians, and a dedicated academic advisor, you will embark on a four-course sequence in Philosophy, Theology, and English over the course of your freshman year. You will take all four courses with the same group of students, which is why we call this your Learning Community.

No matter what major you have chosen or plan to choose, these courses will help you to develop a flexible set of intellectual tools that apply to all academic disciplines and professional fields, from Art History to Mechanical Engineering. You will learn how to ask questions, how to think critically, and how to present your arguments effectively in writing. Simply put, these courses are about learning how to learn.

But a Learning Community is more than just a group of students taking a few classes together. Each semester, you will have opportunities to take your Learning Community experience beyond the classroom by going on group excursions into Washington, D.C., having dinner with your classmates and teachers, and participating in service learning projects. Your Learning Community will also provide support for the transition from high school to college, with a team of embedded librarians to help you navigate your first research assignments, and an academic advisor who will work with you to create a successful first year.