Visiting scholars program

Living in the Heart of Europe and Developing Intercultural Dialogue

Residential, academic and leadership program for university-level Slovaks

What is the Visiting Scholars Program?

As education from Slovakia’s universities often unfortunately falls short, Kolégium Antona Neuwrith (Collegium of Anton Neuwirth or KAN) in Bratislava nurtures Slovak students’ moral and intellectual education in both philosophical, theoretical exercise and that which is practical and professional. As our young organization continues to grow—and especially with the aim to expand to a full-time, rather than part-time, program—we are able to provide the opportunity to PhD candidates to be visiting scholars at the Collegium.

Already in partnership with US organizations and donors, we hope to develop this cooperation, in particular with American PhD candidates, who together with us aim to preserve what is beautiful in Slovak society and human society as a whole, bolstering the dignity of the human and the pursuit of freedom in truth. Together, students, teachers, visiting scholars, and other staff of the Collegium, challenge one another to mature in the recognition and active pursuit of objective Truth, Goodness, and Beauty. For each semester, we seek two American students who will teach at our Collegium location at Ivanka pri Dunaji. Our focus is for PhD candidates to teach our students, but we are also open to those who have recently achieved their PhDs.

What are the benefits of teaching at KAN?

PhD students teaching at the Collegium will live in provided comfortable housing on the Collegium’s beautiful grounds, minutes away from the Bratislava city center and close to the wonders of Vienna, Prague, and Budapest. Visiting scholars will grow from their experience in the KAN community, contributing to its everyday life and learning, while also being given the space and time for each’s own research, quiet, and reflection. To each visiting scholar, KAN offers a place in its wide international network, encompassing many fields of study and professions, such as connection with the John Jay Institute for Faith, Society, and Law in Philadelphia, the Collegium’s sister-organization in the USA (www.johnjayinstitute.org).

The Collegium’s foundation in Truth, Beauty, and Goodness ensures a penetrating experience for each member of the community. Our unique program matures each member in many different ways. Visiting scholars enable us to hold more classes, enhancing Slovak university education and continuing to change the lives of more students. Indirectly and directly, visiting scholars will be able to incorporate their international experience into their research, and our students will benefit in the same way from such international exposure. Students will have the privilege to understand Western literature more deeply with the guidance of those raised in the West. Depending on each PhD candidate’s specific field of study, we will be able to coordinate a position for him to be an associated researcher at the University of Trnava.

Enduring Impact: A World-Wide Endeavor

It strengthens our mission and impact the more we cooperate with those abroad, with whom we can more effectively demonstrate our principles as those which are universal for the flourishing of human society. Furthermore, American visiting scholars can continue to aid our Slovak students in improving their English. The more fluent our students become in English, the better they will be able to express themselves to be stronger leaders at home and abroad.

Today we observe the rise of populist and extremist political parties in post-Communist countries. People have yet to learn to live in and appreciate true freedom. Even worse, there are no institutions devoted to the systematic formation of new leaders for the country of Slovakia. The Collegium of Anton Neuwirth cannot completely overturn the effects of Communism and corruption. However, it can create small islands of positive deviation. It cannot act as a substitute for universities, but it can identify and attract those students with the greatest potential and teach them the kinds of habits of mind and action that good leaders should have. One of the advantages, as well as a potential danger for a small country such as Slovakia, is the fact that a relatively small group of people can make a huge difference. On a daily basis our teachers have a direct impact on the youth in the Collegium, who will, in turn, live out what they have learned here and positively affect society.

We Still Need Assistance in Launching this Unique Program

Currently as of June 2012, the main issue lies in procuring funds for the project in its ideal form, i.e. with airfare and a stipend of 2500€ provided for the visiting scholar’s period of stay over one semester. Accordingly, the Collegium continues to send grant-proposals to attain funds for this project. Please stay-tuned for more information and updates on this amazing initiative! For more information please contact info@kolegium.org.