Imagine exploring the Biltmore House, America’s largest mansion, then spending a weekend in a mission bunk house in Appalachia to volunteer in one of America’s most impoverished regions. Imagine listening to Fat Possum Record’s T-Model Ford and Paul “Wine” Jones play the blues while sitting in their Mississippi living rooms. Or, taking a ferry to canvass through marshland to Sapelo Island, GA, to meet with storyteller Cornelia Bailey as she shares her Gullah heritage.
The American Culture Program at Randolph will take you behind-the-scenes while studying America’s diverse cultures. Learning in this program is more than sitting in a lecture hall; it is about firsthand experience.
The American Culture Program combines classroom lecture and discussion with a series of guest speakers and trips in order to interpret America's history, politics, literature, music, and art. You will examine the ways Americans see themselves, their values, their history, their contributions to the world, and their role in the world today.
You’ll study the paradoxes, and the disagreements, and listen to a range of American voices—from guest speakers, to people you’ll meet on the road, to the woman or faculty member sitting next to you in our 15-passenger van. You will develop your personal voice as you explore the many definitions of American Culture in your program journal.
Students in the Program come from all over the country and all over the world, and faculty come to the program from a broad range of disciplines. The student-teacher ratio in the Program is an unparalleled 3:1. One thing is for sure—there is not a single other program like the American Culture Program in America. You can truly have an extraordinary educational experience at Randolph College.
You can participate in a semester-long program where you will have the opportunity to explore a variety of American themes.
The topics can range from the American landscape to capitalism, from the Civil War to NASCAR, from masculinity to femininity, and from the Civil Rights Movement to immigration. You will spend time in the classroom then hit the road to make real life connections. The semester program will take you on a number of weekend trips, and an 8-day extended trip that will culminate your studies
You can participate in a month-long summer program where you will immerse yourself in the study of a particular aspect of American culture. The theme and the faculty of the summer program change every year.
Past summer programs have included "Witches Whales and the Walden Woods," a study of the literature and culture of New England; "Fields of Dreams," which explored the role of sports in American Culture; and "Americans in Paris," an examination of the American expatriate movement.