Embodying Georgetown’s mission of cura personalis, and exemplifying the kind of high-impact learning practice that characterizes a Georgetown education, the Engelhard Project represents an innovative approach to integrating student wellness issues into academic contexts.
The Engelhard Project for Connecting Life and Learning focuses on teaching to the whole student. By incorporating health and wellness issues into the classroom, the Project fosters academic learning and encourages students to reflect on their own attitudes and behaviors.
Using a curriculum infusion approach, Georgetown faculty link academic course content to health and wellness topics through readings, presentations, discussions led by campus health professionals, and reflective writing assignments. In addition, fitting with Georgetown's commitment to social justice, some courses extend this work with involvement in local communities. The project strives to create meaningful connections between faculty, students, and campus health professionals and encourages the practice of one of Georgetown's most important Jesuit principles, cura personalis, or care for the person.
The Engelhard Project is made possible by an endowment from the Charles Engelhard Foundation, with additional support from alumni and parents.
What began as a curricular experiment in 2005 has evolved into one of the hallmarks of a Georgetown undergraduate education.
The Engelhard Project has forged strong connections among faculty, student affairs staff, and students, not only enriching the Georgetown experience but also engaging in national conversations about the role of well-being in higher education. The Project's work has been shared formally and informally through conversations across campus, in academic journal articles, at national higher education conferences, and with a presentation by President DeGioia at a 2013 White House Conference on mental health.
Since the project’s inception, 9,874 students have taken 328 Engelhard courses taught by more than 97 faculty members in over 28 departments across campus.