Thirty Santa Barbara-area college and high school students were honored as winners of a Santa Barbara City College Great Books Curriculum awards luncheon at SBCC last month.
Building on the success of the last two years, invitations were extended to students at SBCC and three area high schools to interpret the great play Antigone by Sophocles in the categories of expository writing, creative writing or visual arts.
Last fall, more than 1,000 copies of the play were distributed to students at Alta Vista Middle College (a collaboration between Alta Vista Alternative High School and SBCC), Carpinteria High School, SBCC and Santa Barbara High School.
To increase their exposure to the play’s themes, students had the opportunity to attend in-class workshops and lectures and view scenes performed by local actors at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, SBCC and each of the participating high schools.
More than 200 entries for the competition, which was funded by the Apgar Foundation and the SBCC Foundation, were submitted with 30 winners selected.
SBCC is only one of six community colleges in the nation to offer a Great Books Curriculum. Each semester, more than 900 students take at least one course that exposes them to the literary canon of the world’s greatest literature, thematically linked to works by more contemporary writers. Twenty to 25 faculty teach classes focusing on Great Books through reading, study skills, composition, critical thinking, philosophy, world religion, politics, drama, literature and poetry.
“The Great Books Curriculum features enduring works of literature,” said Celeste Barber, SBCC instructor of English composition and literature and the Great Books Curriculum coordinator. “We are tremendously grateful to the Apgar Foundation and the SBCC Foundation for providing the funding that has allowed us to introduce local students to the world of Great Books and to our wonderful campus through this contest.”
— Joan Galvan is a public information officer for SBCC.