Humanity in Perspective in Downtown Portland

Kim Nguyen

Humanity in Perspective (HIP) in Downtown Portland is for adults (ages eighteen and older) who face barriers to continuing their formal education and want to participate in a learning community that centers their interests, voices, objectives, creativity, curiosity, and relationships.

Graduates of this cohort earn six transferable undergraduate credits from Bard College. HIP is comprised of learning communities (cohorts) with accessible and adaptive structures and layers of support designed to help students thrive.

  • There is no tuition or any fees to attend.
  • Readings and books are provided.
  • Childcare and transportation costs are offset by reimbursements and public transit tickets.


The subjects we study are:

  • Art history and visual culture
  • Literature
  • History of the Americas
  • Philosophy
  • Critical thinking and writing

In addition to studying work that is considered canonical, or of classical importance (Plato, for example), we study contemporary works by philosophers, artists, writers, historians, and filmmakers across a wide spectrum of cultures, backgrounds, and viewpoints. View a list of works that we have read, watched, and listened to recently.


HIP creates opportunities for students to:

  • Participate in exploratory conversation
  • Design and implement collaborative projects
  • Learn more deeply about themselves and their communities
  • Reflect on their own beliefs, assumptions, and experiences
  • Develop a practice of reflection, inquiry, and active listening
  • Become more curious and ask questions about themselves and others
  • Experience greater self-awareness


Students develop their abilities to:

  • Learn new skills and techniques to encourage interpersonal connection across difference
  • Take action to promote more just and connected communities through personal and systemic change
  • Build community
  • Feel greater motivation to take action


Within the HIP cohort, students learn alongside highly-qualified instructors, a program coordinator, a classroom assistant, and other special guests from the community beyond the classroom.

Our current cohort meets twice weekly at Oregon Humanities’ downtown office, began in September 2019, and will graduate in May 2020.

We will begin accepting applications for our next adult cohort in spring 2020. This cohort will begin meeting in September 2020.

Please fill out the interest form to learn about opportunities to be part of a future HIP cohort, or contact HIP Program Coordinator, Rozzell Medina, at (503) 409-9134 or with questions.


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