Summer Scholars Program

Discover IWU - "The Good Life!"

Step into an ancient conversation.
If the poet Homer, the reformer Martin Luther, and the theorist Karl Marx were to meet on a city street, what would they talk about? What would they argue about? What would this storyteller, theologian and political philosopher say was the key to a fulfilled life? For centuries men and women have envisioned what it means to live successfully and to die happy. From ancient Athens to America today, every society has had its own ideal of the "Good" life. This July you could be one of 25 scholars to study what past and current civilizations have thought and continue to think about the "Good Life."

Mark Smith

What does "The Good Life" look like?
The John Wesley Honors College's (JWHC) Summer Scholars Program, "The Good Life," will be held on the campus of Indiana Wesleyan University July 6-26, 2014. The program is an intense experience that will give you a glimpse into the academic, social and spiritual experience of a JWHC student. You will learn with Dr. Mark Smith (History), one of IWU's premier scholar-teachers.

You will unpack God's vision of the "Good Life" in group devotionals, worship times and class experiences. You will interact with a variety of IWU professors as they share their own experiences of the "Good Life." You will explore where you fit into this vision as you chat with current JWHC students. Finally, you will uncover how your own special gifts and abilities equip you to live the "Good Life" with the guidance of IWU's Center for Life Calling and Leadership.

Full-Tuition Scholarship
Scholars will earn three academic credits for "History of World Civilizations," a course taught by Dr. Smith for Summer Scholars. It counts as a general education course, a requirement for all IWU undergraduate students. It is also transferable to other institutions. Students who participate in the Summer Scholars Program receive a full-tuition scholarship (worth over $1,300). Room and board costs are $1,100, plus books. The program cost includes all lodging, meals, and cultural outings in Indianapolis and Marion, and on-campus activities for the full three weeks.

Applying to the Summer Scholars Program
Applications will be accepted from mid-February on a rolling basis until the program reaches capacity. To complete your application, download the brochure, which includes an application form.

Top Reasons to Come

If you have ever asked any of these questions, then the "Good Life" could be for you!

  • What is college life really like?
  • Are there other high-school students that love learning?
  • What's different about studying at a Christian university?
  • What is God's plan for my life?


"Throughout my junior year of high school, I was, at the very least, contemplative about where I stood in my beliefs and what my purpose was, or if I even had one. I attribute, without a doubt, the Summer Scholars Program as the catalyst that settled my unrest and made me remember "that nothing can ever separate us from God's love" (Romans 8:38). I think it is fair to say that choosing to be a part of the Summer Scholars Program was one of the greatest decisions of my life."
--Cody Rassi, Summer Scholar, 2011

"Participating in the Summer Scholars was one of the best decisions I could have made before my senior year. As I learned about world civilizations and what makes a good life, I formed close friendships and experienced God in a fresh way through daily devotionals with other students and resident assistants. It was an exciting and fun experience that helped me mature spiritually and academically. I'll never forget it."
--Morgan Dixon, Summer Scholar, 2010

Recommended Qualifications

  • At least a 3.5 cumulative GPA on a 4.0 scale.

Application Requirements

  • Official high school transcript sent by high school
  • Recommendation letter from school teacher or guidance counselor
  • A 400-word essay answering the question, "What is the Good Life?"
  • Summer Scholars application and community values contract
  • $50 application fee (applied to room and board cost or refunded to those not accepted)


Brian Clark (M.Div., Princeton Theological Seminary) currently serves as a minister in the Church of the Nazarene, teaches as an adjunct instructor in the John Wesley Honors College, and directs the Summer Scholars Program. Brian loves Korean food and hopes one day to take a culinary tour of Korea.

Course Professor:
Mark Smith (Ph.D., Kentucky) grew up in Ohio eating peanut butter sandwiches with chili. He frequently leads medieval, Reformation and World War II trips to Europe. He is an avid baseball fan and loves the Boston Celtics. He often quotes C.S. Lewis in casual conversation: the entrance to Narnia may, in fact, be in his office. Dr. Smith teaches history in IWU's Social Science Division. He is currently thinking, reading and talking a great deal about the history of baseball.

E-mail, or call 765-677-1441.