NORTHFIELD, Vt. — Norwich University has been awarded a $100,000 Humanities Connections Implementation Grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to continue work on the Norwich Humanities Initiative, an interdisciplinary curriculum project which was launched in 2018 with the support of a $35,000 NEH Humanities Connections Planning Grant.

The Norwich Humanities Initiative enabled the implementation of a pilot curriculum, co-designed and team-taught by professors in the humanities and those in other disciplines including geology, business, nursing, and criminal justice. It demonstrates the relevance of humanities-based approaches to global problems that cadets and civilian students will face upon graduation.

This innovative initiative allows undergraduates to encounter the human questions that informed Norwich Founder Alden Partridge’s vision of service over self that makes Norwich a unique place to work and study. Classes such as “Narrative Medicine,” “True Crime,” “Game Theory: The Art of Strategy” and the “Geoarchaeology of Lost Cities” provide opportunities for hands-on research and community engagement, promoting high-impact teaching and learning practices that enhance students’ personal and professional growth.

“As Norwich continues into its third century of service to the nation, this initiative encourages students and faculty to step outside of their disciplinary silos and to open up to the challenge, excitement, and unpredictability of working across disciplines towards a shared set of goals,” Associate Professor of English and NHI Co-Director Amy Woodbury Tease said. “Our students thrive when they are invited to ask questions about the world around them, and by inserting humanities-driven approaches to problem-solving and interdisciplinary collaboration, this initiative offers an inclusiveness that gives everyone a place at the table.”

The three-year $100,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities is a validation of the Norwich Humanities Initiative’s vision of institutionalizing a suite of team-taught humanities-centered general education courses as a component integral to a Norwich education.

“Over the next three years, we hope to use this funding to expand our roster of interdisciplinary courses, bring in student fellows, provide more faculty opportunities to develop and teach courses, embed external experts into our classes, and engage our students with communities to expand on their understanding of humanities in various professions,” Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering and NHI Co-Director Tara Kulkarni said.

“In each case, our goal is to help our students to be the best version of their professional selves as they lead and serve in every role that they will take on upon graduation from Norwich University using a humanist mindset. As we respond to the COVID-19 crisis and prepare for the long recovery, it is even more clear that to be able to offer our students the skills to practice their trade on the foundation of humanist thinking is the best way that we can continue creating citizen-soldier-scholars.”

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About Norwich University

Norwich University is a diversified academic institution that educates traditional-age students and adults in a Corps of Cadets and as civilians. Norwich offers a broad selection of traditional and distance-learning programs culminating in baccalaureate and graduate degrees. Norwich University was founded in 1819 by Capt. Alden Partridge of the U.S. Army and is the oldest private military college in the United States. Norwich is one of our nation's six senior military colleges and the birthplace of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC).

About the National Endowment for the Humanities

National Endowment for the Humanities: Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at: 

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