About the Institute

The Institute for the Study of Western Civilization in Cupertino CA is a non-profit organization for higher education founded in 2002. Our courses and lectures seek to improve our collective understanding of how we in the twenty-first century came to be who we are, why we think the way we do, and what assumptions about the world and human nature are traceable back to earlier periods in the five-thousand-year story of western civilization.

William H. Fredlund, Ph.D., the Institute’s founder and director, leads our distinguished faculty. Our evening courses in western cultural history are offered at the Institute building at 10060 Bubb Road in Cupertino. Our students are adults living mostly in the South Bay Area, who take the courses for professional development and/or personal enrichment. In recent years, we have offered courses in the histories of England, France, Italy, Spain, and ancient Rome, among others, as well as our survey of the history of western civilization, called The Making of the Western Mind. We also offer language courses (French, Italian, and Spanish) and a lively Friday night lecture series, featuring visiting professors who present a wide variety of topics.

The Institute Scholarship

An important part of the Institute’s mission is the extension of full tuition scholarships and cash grants to secondary and college instructors who are currently teaching social sciences or humanities (history, literature, philosophy, art, and related courses) in Bay Area schools.

The Institute scholarship award for the 2018-1019 academic year (October 2018 to June, 2019) covers:

  • 3 quarters (30 weeks) of full tuition for the Institute’s core course, The Making of the Western Mind
  • A $1K cash grant for the teacher’s own classroom expenses
  • A packet of required books for the class

No grades or tests are required, and the recipient is not required to account for classroom expenses that are defrayed by the cash grant. However, regular attendance and participation in the class are required, and the award is extended one quarter at a time, dependent on the recipient’s continued participation.

Class Details

The Making of the Western Mind, Tuesday evenings, 7:00-9:30pm
(class is always preceded by a fun gathering hour of wine and goodies)

The Making of the Western Mind invites students to come to know the major philosophers, painters, sculptors, architects, poets, playwrights, and novelists of our western cultural tradition. During our thirty-week journey, we read philosophical essays and epic poems, look at slides of frescoes and oil paintings, and study the biographies of great leaders. For more details, please see the course syllabus.

  • Fall Quarter: October 1 – December 10, 2018 (no class November 19)
  • Winter Quarter: January 7 – March 11, 2019
  • Spring Quarter: April 1 – June 3, 2019

The instructor is William H. Fredlund, Ph.D., the Director of the Institute, who obtained his B.A. and M.A. from UCLA, where he specialized in European history and art history. He then studied in Italy on a Fulbright Fellowship and completed a double Ph.D. in history and humanities at Stanford, specializing in Renaissance Italy. Dr. Fredlund, who is one of Silicon Valley’s most popular lecturers, has taught for UCLA, the University of Florence, Stanford, and UCSC Extension.

The course is offered at the Institute building at: 10060 Bubb Road, Cupertino 95014.

Applications

Please download, fill out, scan, and send the application to:

  • office(at)westernciv(dot)com

Or mail to:

  • Institute for the Study of Western Civilization
  • 10060 Bubb Road, Cupertino CA 95014

Deadline for submission: July 1, 2018.

The Institute Scholarship Program is made possible by a generous grant from The Valley Foundation.