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Sophomore Residential Seminars

Sophomores in San Francisco
Members of the fall 2015 Sophomore Residential Seminar course Immigrant and Sexual Cultures on location in San Francisco.  Read More
In-depth Conversation
Students take advantage of a more socially and academically supportive environment.
A Global Education
In 2013-14, Professor Lesleigh Cushing led sophomores on an excursion to Israel. Learn about upcoming opportunities below.
Residential Classroom
Students live and take SRS courses in Drake Hall. 
Accepted students live and study together, then immerse themselves further in the learning experience through travel with their faculty member. The application period for the 2016-17 academic year will begin in January, 2016. 
The program is a transformational series of intensive residential seminars for sophomores, made possible with a significant grant from the Mellon Foundation. Students who are selected will live and study together, meet regularly with the seminar professors and guest speakers in their residence hall, and engage in an embedded academic travel experience related to the course at no extra charge. Each spring, all Mellon Residential Seminar students will continue the dialog with a one-quarter-credit course with their professor.



Please click here to receive updates about the 2016-17 application cycle.

Faculty teaching in the program will interview students during the first two weeks of February, 2016 and offer spots to students beginning on February 22, 2016. 

What Students Are Saying

  • "Amazing teacher, really passionate about the subject and makes you think way past the text"
  • "Very interesting and brilliant"
  • "Honestly one of the best professors I have had at this school"
  • "Excellent professor. Intellectually stimulating and challenging. Open to new ideas and arguments."

Program Advantages

  • Better academic performance;
  • More socially and academically supportive environments;
  • Feeling more connected to their peers and to their program of study;
  • Greater satisfaction with their overall college experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I consider Sophomore Residential Seminars?
The seminars allow you to live and learn with other sophomores who share similar academic interests. The seminars also allow you to work closely with a Colgate professor over an entire year.

How do I become a member of a seminar?
The online application will be available beginning on January 2, 2016. Faculty teaching the Sophomore Residential Seminars will interview students during early February. Scheduling an appointment is done after you have successfully submitted your application. Once you click SUBMIT, you will be routed to a Google calendar site where you can select an interview time that works best for you. You must be logged in to Gmail with your Colgate username. The assignment of rooms and roommates will come later.

How does the housing work?
During the 2016-17 school year, two SRS classes will be housed in 100 Hamilton, one in the Bryan complex (Residential Commons #2), and one in Ciccone Commons (Drake Hall). By participating in this program, you will not have to take part in the housing lottery and selection later this spring.

Does it cost anything to participate?
No. There is no direct charge for your research trip or the field trips and other activities connected to the program.

Do the seminar courses fulfill any distribution requirements?
Yes: "Spain" will satisfy Communities & Identities CORE; "Challenges of Modernity - Istanbul" satisfies that CORE requirement; "Crete" will satisfy the humanities area requirement; and "Temples, Caves, and Stupas" will satisfy global engagements.

I'm really interested in multiple classes in the program. Is it possible to interview with two professors to improve my chances of getting into the program?
You will be given an interview slot for your first-choice course, but faculty will share information with each other during the selection process. So, while it's not possible to have more than one interview, you will still be considered for other seminars listed on your application.

How important is my GPA in considering my application?
Your GPA is a factor, but it is far from the most important one. We realize that you've been at Colgate for only one semester, so it is a small sample size. If there are things you'd have us know about your first semester that put your GPA into perspective, please let us know about them in the application.

What are the travel dates for the seminars?
Many variables are considered when determining the specific travel dates of each program, such as cost of airfare and lodging, etc. Therefore, specific travel dates are currently not available. However, none of the trips will depart prior to January 2016 and families can anticipate trips taking place during the first two weeks in January. We want you to be home for the holidays and back with a bit of time to breathe before the semester begins. Most classes will return in time for students to attend Sophomore Connections.

Who can I talk to if I have more questions?
You can direct your questions to