SUU Hosts Free Philosophy Summer Camp

Published: May 31, 2019 | Author: Savannah Byers | Read Time: 2 minutes

Professor teaching classEvery summer since 2015, Southern Utah University has planned, organized and hosted the Utah Lyceum - an outreach program providing local middle and high school students the opportunity to explore philosophy. This year's Lyceum will be held on campus from June 11 to June 15.

This free, five-day summer camp is led by SUU professors Kris Phillips and Kirk Fitzpatrick. In addition to receiving free professional instruction, students will also receive lunch each day and copies of the books of focus.

The subjects covered in this year’s Utah Lyceum will include logic, informal fallacies, John Perry’s A Dialogue on Personal Identity and Immortality, and Plato’s Five Dialogues.

“I believe that philosophy can provide a truly life-changing experience for people who come to it with an open mind,” Phillips explains. “Philosophical instruction is too valuable to wait until college, where it is often at best a course students take to satisfy a degree requirement.”

Throughout the camp, participants will learn the basics of formal reasoning as well as how to identify and evaluate arguments. Phillips and Fitzpatrick help participants research and develop a project to present at the end of camp to family and friends.

“Every Lyceum program is different, and we continue to develop ours as we learn from what is successful each summer,” said Fitzpatrick. “The first year we had a small but dedicated group of eight students join us, and in our second year, we saw that number increase to 17! We hope to see that kind of growth continue in future years.”

Students who complete the Lyceum are often more likely to continue studying philosophy. Roughly 30% of the Lyceum participants go on to enroll in a university-level philosophy class. Some students have also chosen to become philosophy majors.

“I decided to study philosophy at SUU because of the Lyceum,” said SUU senior Kaleigh Bronson. Bronson attended the Utah Lyceum in 2015. “I really enjoyed the readings and discussions we had. It’s an amazing opportunity that has had a lasting impact on me and my academic career.”

For more information about the Utah Lyceum, or to enroll visit their website or contact the Utah Lyceum at

Southern Utah University offers both a major and a minor in philosophy. Philosophy classes focus on logic, metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, political philosophy, and the history of philosophy. Students who study philosophy often enter fields of teaching, civil service, politics, and public service. For more information about philosophy at SUU, visit their website.

Tags: College of Humanities and Social Sciences Philosophy

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