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Image of students and art professor Leslee Robison working in the local prison with youth offenders.


FlagSHIP (Flagler Sophomore High Impact Program) is a transformative educational experience that puts learning and interacting across communities of difference at its core.

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Why is this important?

To prepare you for a life well lived in a diverse 21st-century global community. Through FlagSHIP, you can travel abroad (outside of the U.S.), or travel away (within the U.S) or take an immersive course on campus. Many of our programs include hands-on projects that live and breathe in and out of the classroom. 

Who can participate?

The FlagSHIP will be required for freshmen and some transfer students who enter in the Fall 2019 semester or later.

  • Freshmen, including those who enter with advanced credit, will participate in their second year.
  • Transfer students who enter with less than 60 credits will participate in the academic year that they enter with 30-59 credits.

FlagSHIP Courses

We are offering three courses in a Maymester 2019 three-week term as our first pilot. Learn more about these courses below and check back as we approve the ten courses for our May 2020 pilot!

Local Anthropology: Culture and Community

Course Description:

This course will explore the dynamics between culture and community in St. Augustine by focusing primarily on Native American and African American experiences in the city.

Visit and Learn about significant sites related to these historical experiences such as:

  • The Castillo de San Marcos,
  • Nombre de Dios
  • Fort Mose
  • Lincolnville
  • Florida Memorial College.

You will engage in oral history research, historical research, and material culture analysis. Together we will learn about diversity and inclusion through examining diversity and exclusion: 

  • Why did liberty and justice not extend equally to all citizens of the country?
  • How is culture linked to time and space?

The goal is to learn anthropological methods as we explore the local community. This exploration will reveal the contested nature of the term ‘community,’ which can veil tensions among individuals and groups that share space, although not always a sense of place or shared identity.

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Incarceration and Emancipation

Course Description:

This course will combine reading and discussion on campus with an art project, Cellmates. Together, these activities examine the cultural factors that give or deny privilege to various citizens within our community. In particular, we will work with young men incarcerated here in St. Augustine at the St. Johns Youth Academy (SJYA).

As a part of this art project, each class member will be paired with a young man and get to know him through individual activities such as letter-writing and image-sharing, and eventually, by meeting face-to-face and working with the entire group. Flagler students will help to create a support network for these young men through directed activities. Through assigned reading and writing exercises, we will educate ourselves and our partners about the systemic factors that hinder true equality. During our discussions and activities at the detention center, we will create a space free of hierarchy, where everyone has an equal voice, and we will strive to identify areas where we can develop emancipatory practices for our detained partners to keep after we leave.

For some, this does not sound like “art,” but it is part of a contemporary approach to art- making that favors the connections made between people over other effects art has on society.

The term for this type of work is Social Practice, but it is also referred to as Socially-Engaged Art because it forms communities, emancipates participants, and shares governance in building and responsibility for creating the art or meaning.

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Center of Democracy, Diversity, & Citizenship, Washington, D.C. Honors

Course Description:

For the sophomore Honors class (aka Four Pillars of Learning), the study-away trip will be to Washington, D.C. In advance, you will choose a research topic from within any field of concentration as it relates to the topics of citizenship, diversity, and/or democracy and to the city of Washington, D.C. Objects of study could include (and are not limited to):

  • The history of the city
  • Specific sites in the city
  • Holdings of museums
  • Galleries, or archives located in the city
  • Organizations, businesses, or institutions based in the city, or the city’s environment and geography

The first week will include reading and discussion on the broader topics of citizenship, diversity, and democracy, instruction in researching secondary sources and provide the opportunity for you to complete your research for your chosen topic.

In the second week, the class will be on its study-away trip to Washington, D.C. Besides engaging in learning activities—chosen by both faculty and students—based around the topics of the course, students will give a 10-minute presentation of their research at a site appropriate to each project.

During the third week, you will receive instruction in using secondary sources in written work, workshop their projects with other students, and synthesize their research with their reflections of the study-away trip in producing a final paper.

The semester prior to this program, you will collaborate on creating a petition on the cost and debt burden of higher education and collect signatures over the semester. During the D.C. trip, this petition will be delivered to the office of the member of Congress from Florida’s 4th District (the district that Flagler College is in). In the spirit of democracy, students who do not want to work toward this specific issue may pick another topic.

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Questions About the Program?

Contact our FlagSHIP team with any questions you may have about this program at: