First-Year Options

Dear College Class of 2021,

During your four years in the College, you’ll have many exciting choices to make, the first of which will be your course selection for your first semester. The beauty of this choice is that you can’t go wrong! Whether you elect to apply to one of our First-Year Options—the Liberal Arts Seminar, the Ignatius Seminars, or the FLL Hager Scholars Program—or build a schedule of four or five courses from the College’s diverse range of departments, you will create a rich intellectual experience to begin your college career.

If you decide to apply to a seminar or program described below, your application will be due Monday, June 5. You will be notified of your selection by July 1, when you receive your Guide to Preregistration for New Students, which will walk you through the preregistration process. If selected, you will build the rest of your fall schedule around your seminar or program enrollment. Application instructions can be found on page 16 of the First Year Options brochure, which was mailed to your home address in mid-May and is available in PDF form here.

We look forward to working with you as you navigate your academic options, both now and for the next four years!

—The Georgetown College Deans

Liberal Arts Seminar (LAS)

The Liberal Arts Seminar is a yearlong multidisciplinary course exploring the cultural history of the Mediterranean through fictional and nonfictional narratives. This shared intellectual experience of cooperative learning builds a strong sense of community for student and faculty participants.

All first-year students in the College are eligible to apply to the LAS. Science and pre-med students who wish to participate will need to arrange for lab schedules to accommodate the seminar. The LAS occupies the space of two courses and six credits each semester.

The program fulfills three core requirements (one writing, one theology, and one HALC (humanities: arts, literatures, and cultures)) and one elective course. The LAS will also fulfill the global diversity portion of the engaging diversity core requirement. Students with AP or IB credit in English will retain their AP/IB credit as a free elective toward the Georgetown degree.

Instructors for the 2017-2018 Liberal Arts Seminar

  • Elliott Colla, Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies and Comparative Literature Program
  • Emily Francomano, Department of Spanish and Portuguese and Comparative Literature Program
  • Nicoletta Pireddu, Department of Italian and Comparative Literature Program
  • Jonathan Ray, Department of Theology

FLL Hager Scholars

The FLL Hager Scholars program is designed with our most ambitious students of languages and linguistics in mind, and is designed to create for them both a sense of community and opportunities for intellectual growth. Over the course of this yearlong program, Hager Scholars will gain a greater appreciation of the possibilities available to students and scholars of language(s), inside the classroom and in the world beyond.

In addition to a course in their declared language or linguistics major (visit for a complete list), Hager Scholars take a series of courses that fulfill core requirements in other disciplines, taught by faculty who are particularly interested in the ways that language study informs their fields.

In fall 2017, Hager Scholars will enroll in LING-001 Introduction to Language and CPLT-090 Introduction to Comparative Literature. Additionally, Hager Scholars will be enrolled in a biweekly, yearlong, one-credit colloquium, coordinated by French professor Sylvie Durmelat. The colloquium is designed to both introduce students to a wide range of FLL faculty and their research interests and expose them to the many opportunities available to language majors outside of the classroom, in DC, and beyond.

Note: This program is only open to students with a declared major in the FLL. If you are not sure whether you are currently a declared FLL major, or if you would like to declare a major in a language, linguistics, or comparative literature prior to entering Georgetown, please contact

Instructors for the 2016-17 FLL Hager Scholars Program

  • Sylvie Durmelat, Department of French and Francophone Studies
  • Sue Lorenson, Department of Linguistics
  • Christopher Shinn, Department of English


Drawing on the educational insights of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, Ignatius Seminars seek to cultivate the Ignatian ideal of cura personalis: care for each person’s individuality and care for his or her integral wholeness. Like other Renaissance educators, Jesuits sought to educate the whole person—mind, body, and spirit—a tradition alive at Georgetown College today. The Ignatius Seminars focus not only on conveying information and intellectual content, but also on building a home for wisdom and enriching all dimensions of our students’ lives.

Offered only in the first semester, Ignatius Seminars introduce students to the depth and diversity of Georgetown’s dynamic intellectual community. Favorite topics of College faculty form the offerings of these seminars that invite small student groups to join their professors in the creative exploration of mind and spirit.

All first-year students in the College are eligible to apply to the Ignatius Seminars. The Ignatius Seminar in a fall semester commitment only, and occupies the space of one course and three credits in a student’s fall schedule. Ignatius Seminars are elective courses and do not fulfill any core requirements.  

2017 Ignatius Seminars

Borders: Self, Nation, and Beyond: Nicoletta Pireddu, Department of  Italian and Comparative Literature Program

Traveling in Search of Self and Other: Veronica Salles-Reese, Department of Spanish and Portuguese

Human Flourishing, East and West: Erin Cline, Department of Theology

Serving the Common Good: Bette Jacobs, Department of Health Systems Administration

Past/Present: Contemporary Plays with Stakes in the Past: Maya Roth, Department of Performing Arts

Psychology and Shakespeare: Fathali M. Moghaddam, Department of Psychology

You and GU: A Cultural Encounter: Yulia Chentsova-Dutton, Department of Psychology

Disability, Culture, and Question of Care: Libbie Rifkin, Department of English

Engaging Civic Imagination: John J. DeGioia, President, Georgetown University