Morven Summer Institute

The Morven Summer Institute is an innovative summer program hosted at Morven Farm, an emerging landscape for interdisciplinary learning for the University of Virginia. At the Morven Summer Institute, undergraduate and graduate students with interests in sustainability, design, food systems, and ecology have the opportunity to escape traditional confines of the classroom while working on projects with real-world applications.

The Morven Summer Institute 2017
Students participating in the 2017 Summer Institute can select one 3-credit course from either (or both) of the 10-day summer blocks (Block A: May 15-May 26 & Block B: May 30-June 9). 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. Students from all years, departments, and outside Universities are welcome to join the Morven community for this unique program.

Detailed information about course offerings for the 2016 Morven Summer Institute can also be seen on the Summer Session website (updates still to come for 2017!): Office of Summer Programs

For a glimpse at all you'll learn and do during the Morven Summer Institute experience, check out the MSI Blog!

To speak with a member of the Morven Programs staff, contact Danielle Loleng, Program Assistant: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or Katherine Wilkin, Morven Summer Institute Student Coordinator: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Morven Institute Block A: May 15 - May 26
Morven Institute Block B: May 30 - June 9



Stay tuned for additional information on Block A classes.


Paul Freedman: Politics of Food

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, for political equality, and for budget priorities. This course looks at food politics through a series of “food fights.” We will examine controversies over agricultural subsidies, labeling requirements, taxation, farming practices, food safety, advertising and education. In doing so, we will explore some of the most important features of American democracy, including legislative politics, regulation, interest group activity, federalism, public opinion, political communication, and representation. Ultimately we will examine the ways in which the politics of food represents both a reflection and a distortion of fundamental democratic principles.

Phoebe Crisman: Sustainable Communities

This course investigates the principles of sustainable community development—environmental quality, economic health, and social equity—as reflected in buildings, rural landscapes, towns, and cities. Through case studies, class activities and site visits, we will examine how communities impact and improve basic environmental-quality variables such as air and water quality, food supply, mobility, energy, and sense of place.

Tuition (3 credits @ $334/credit): $1,002
Comprehensive Fee: $354
Morven Institute Fee: $450
Total: $1,806

Tuition (3 credits @ $380/credit): $1,140
Comprehensive Fee: $354
Morven Institute Fee: $450
Total: $1,944

Tuition (3 credits @ $1,176/credit): $3,528
Comprehensive Fee: $413
Morven Institute Fee: $450
Total: $4,391

Tuition (3 credits @ $770 credit): $2,310
Comprehensive Fee: $413
Morven Institute Fee: $450
Total: $3,173

The Morven Summer Institute 2014