Humanity in Perspective

Humanity in Perspective (HIP) offers free, for-credit college-level humanities courses for people who are living on low incomes and/or facing barriers to continuing their education. 

Learn about our upcoming courses. 


There is no tuition or fees to attend HIP, and all readings are provided. Upon completion, participants earn transferable undergraduate credits from Bard College and a certificate, which can be used in resumés and applications.

Courses are made possible by a partnership between Oregon Humanities, the Clemente Course in the Humanities, Bard College, and Portland State University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

“The community-centered learning approach of HIP worked for me and for the class as a whole. We shared experiences, thoughts, ideas, and inquiry. It was a space where we could show up and be ourselves, share and listen equally, and not be met with judgment.”—Qùynh Nguyễn, 2020 HIP Graduate


Participants in the 2014 HIP cohort. Credit Kim Oanh Nguyen.

What to Expect

“HIP wasn’t just the instructor talking. This was a class where our feedback and knowledge was just as important as the instructor’s. It felt empowering and very much like a community rather than a classroom.”—Angie Graves, 2021 HIP Graduate

Class exploration is rooted in the core humanities disciplines of art, history, philosophy, literature, and critical thinking. Participants learn through conversation, written and creative projects, interactive presentations, and diverse media (such as film, podcasts, visual art, and music). View a list of works that we have read, watched, and listened to recently. 

HIP instructors honor students’ unique goals and nurture an environment where relevant learning, activity, and connections take place. Additional mentorship and tutoring is available outside of scheduled class times. Participants can expect to spend 1-2 hours per week on readings and assignments.

“Growing up working class and barely graduating from high school, I've mostly worked in factories or construction jobs. I never thought that attending and succeeding in a liberal arts program was even a remote possibility. HIP helped me make that opportunity for myself . . . I am a better communicator, listener, scholar, and community member thanks to HIP.” —Esther Forbyn, 2013 HIP Graduate

One Person Protest, a project by the Fall 2020 HIP course.

How to Register

Please view the list of upcoming courses to learn more about how to register. Registration is a short, noncompetitive process designed to take less than 15 minutes to complete.


Eligibility Information

HIP courses are currently open to adults age 18 and over who live in Oregon (or near the Oregon border).

To qualify for HIP:

  • You do not have a four-year college degree.

  • You are able to read a newspaper in English.

  • Your household income is at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines (see the frequently asked questions for more income guidelines).

If you meet some but not all of the above criteria, please contact us or make a note when you register. We will consider all applications and make exceptions in certain circumstances.

For questions, please contact Rozzell Medina, HIP program manager and lead instructor, at or (971) 361-9883. 


Humanity in Perspective is made possible thanks to the generous support of the National Endowment for the Humanities and foundations, corporations, and individual supporters.


HIP Courses

Learn in community, for credit, for free.

Meet Our Instructors

Meet the instructors who teach Humanity in Perspective.

HIP Sample Reading List

A list of works that we have read, watched, and listened to recently.

Projects and Media

Featured projects and media from the HIP classroom community.

HIP Frequently Asked Questions

Learn about Humanity in Perspective, what to expect, and how to register.