Morven Summer Institute



At the Morven Summer Institute, undergraduate and graduate students with interests in sustainability, design, food systems, and history will have the opportunity to escape traditional confines of the classroom while working on projects with real-world applications.

Students from all years, departments, and outside universities are welcome to join the Morven community for this unique program.

Students participating in the 2024 Summer Institute select one 3-credit course from either (or both) of the 10-day summer blocks. In conjunction with time spent in the classroom at Morven, this interdisciplinary program features guest speakers, field trips, active group discussions, and hands-on projects to ignite creative collaboration among students and faculty.

The Morven Summer Institute is a collaborative effort involving faculty from the School of Architecture, the School of Engineering, and the College of Arts and Sciences; the Office of the Vice President for Research; and the Office of Summer and Special Academic Programs.

In conjunction with time spent in the classroom at Morven, this multidisciplinary program features guest speakers, field trips, active group discussions, and hands-on projects to ignite creative collaboration among students and faculty.

Session I : May 20 - May 31 10:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

ARH 4500/AAS 4005 - Morven’s Enslaved & Descendant Communities, Scot French and Lenora McQueen

This course invites students to explore the complex, multi-layered history and evolving interpretation of UVA’s Morven Farm, with a focus on the site’s 19th century enslaved and descendant communities. Located in southwestern Albemarle County, not far from Monticello, the site has attracted new interest from researchers since its acquisition by UVA in 2001. The course will combine on-site lectures and seminar-style discussions with day trips to area archives and historic sites. Students will maintain research journals, report new findings, and produce a multimedia or poster-style project.

Session I  - May 20 - May 31 10:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

PLAP 3160/GSVS 3160 - Politics of Food, Paul Freedman

How and what we eat is basic to who we are as individuals, as a culture, and as a polity. This course looks at the production and consumption of food in a political context. Food politics and policies have critical implications for the environment, for public health, and for social justice and political equality. Ultimately, we will examine the ways in which the politics of food represents both a reflection and a distortion of fundamental democratic principles. We will also examine a number of current issues confronting food politics and the food system in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. This is a 10-day seminar.

GSVS 3110 - Sustainable Communities, Tessa Farmer 

This seminar investigates sustainable community practices from around the globe, exploring how communities think about and implement structures to support environmental quality, economic health, and social equity. Through case studies, class activities and site visits, we will examine what we can learn from many sources to  reimagine and change our communities to achieve holistic sustainability. This is a 10-day seminar


Tuition (3 credits @ $456/credit): $1,368
Total: $1,368

Tuition (3 credits @ $535/credit): $1,605
Total: $1,605

Tuition (3 credits @ $1,685/credit): $5,055
Total: $5,055

Tuition (3 credits @ $1084/credit): $3,252
Total: $3,252