An Academic-Year Calendar Based on the Hero's Journey

As the author and scholar Joseph Campbell noted, in most societies throughout recorded history, a similar story has been told of a heroic journey of self-discovery and growth. This story involves a hero reluctantly being called to adventure, facing challenges and trials, addressing their inner fears, discovering a sense of purpose and capacity to act in the world, creating an identity, and ultimately returning home transformed. The Iliad, Wizard of Oz, and Star Wars are some of the many examples.

At the root of this story is an adventure every person shares - adolescence. We enter reluctantly, discover new capacities, face challenges, and return transformed, as adults. The Hero's Journey cycle sets the tone for our year, in five terms which frame the questions we'll explore together:

Chapter 1 - Introducing the Hero - August 22 - October 14, 2016
Chapter 2 - Facing our Fears - October 24 - December 9, 2016
Chapter 3 - Finding Mentors - January 3 - February 10, 2017
Chapter 4 - Road of New Friends, Tests & Trials - February 27 - April 7, 2017
Chapter 5 - New Thresholds - April 17 - June 9, 2017

Between each term we have a week-long intersession, an opportunity for even deeper focus on a particular topic, for example through special courses, apprenticeships, or class expeditions. 

A PDF of our full 2016-2017 academic year calendar can be found here.

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