Performing Wisdom Summer Workshop

for students who want to think and act philosophically

Apply now!

Program dates: July 20-31, 2020
Application deadline: Sunday, March 1, 2020
Recommendation questionnaire deadline: Tuesday, March 10, 2020


The Performing Wisdom program introduces high school juniors and seniors to issues in philosophy that have been important since ancient times - issues surrounding justice, ethics, truth, and knowledge. While we will research, write about, and debate these issues together, we will also explore creative, dramatic approaches to making our philosophical thinking relevant, engaging, and powerful. Under the guidance of the Performing Wisdom faculty, students will undertake daily investigations of questions such as: What does it mean to be a just person? When is it right to disobey? What responsibilities does a citizen have to her society? These investigations will use philosophical texts, but the heart of the Performing Wisdom program is its emphasis on the power of dramatic action to encourage creative thinking and expression.

Over the course of the two weeks, students will write, direct, and perform original pieces of drama, which transform philosophical debates into vivid, realized dramatic conflict. On the final day of the program, participants will stage an adaptation of the ancient tragedy Antigone—a deeply philosophical drama—for an audience of family and invited guests on the grounds of the Center for Hellenic Studies in Washington, DC.

The program is free and includes lunch. The program meets Monday – Friday from 10:00am – 5:00pm.


Applicants must be at least 15 years old, and must not turn 19 years old before July 31, 2020. Additionally, applicants must be enrolled in a high school in the Washington, DC metropolitan area, and intend to graduate from high school and enter college in 2020, 2021, or 2022.  


Apply now!

Application deadline: Sunday, March 1, 2020
Recommendation questionnaire deadline: Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Students interested in applying should:

The online application asks students to write a short essay which describes their interest in philosophy and/or drama and what they hope to accomplish by participating in the Performing Wisdom Program at the Center for Hellenic Studies.

The student’s reference may be a teacher, advisor, or employer. This person should be able to comment specifically on the student’s academic record, capacity to carry out the responsibilities listed above, and ability to work effectively and cooperatively with the program faculty and students visiting the CHS. Students should inform their reference that the CHS will contact them directly. 

The CHS will notify successful applicants in early April.


For questions regarding this summer program, please contact the program manager at