Students in the First-Year Program discover their classmates in CC are just as bright, engaged, and curious as they are. This brand new place feels like home.

Professor Julien Smith, First-Year Program Coordinator

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Throughout the two-semester First-Year Program sequence students read selected works of history, literature, drama, philosophy, and religion and consider closely the ideas that have shaped a range of traditions. Ideas are explored in many ways––through critical reading and close analysis of texts; through careful research and focused expository and persuasive writing; through scholarly lectures, faculty-guided small group discussion among classmates, and formal public debate (Oxford Debates); and through creative dramatic and musical expression (First-Year Production).

Works typically found on the first-year program syllabus include:

  • Plato The Trial and Death of Socrates
  • Aeschylus II: The Oresteia
  • Aristotle Nicomachean Ethics
  • Genesis: Translation and Commentary
  • Confucius The Essential Analects
  • Mencius: Basic Writings
  • ​Xunzi: Basic Writings
  • Zhuangzi: Basic Writings
  • Saint Augustine Confessions
  • Shakespeare A Midsummer Night’s Dream
  • ​Machiavelli The Prince
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