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Explore Greece or tap your toes with Continuing Studies

STANFORD -- At a time when many faculty members are glaring at stacks of final term papers still to be read and graded, Evangelia Prionas can hardly wait for the next round of courses to begin.

"It's true, I'm really looking forward to the first class at the end of this month," says the native of Greece who has taught at Stanford for almost 20 years. "I'm already wondering what kinds of engineers or business people I'm going to get this time."

Prionas is one of 20 Stanford faculty who will be teaching in the Continuing Studies Program summer quarter which starts June 27. After teaching only three CSP courses -- compared with scores of undergraduate and graduate classes in Greek language and literature -- she says she's come to appreciate the older students' approach to courses.

"Most are people who have already done one or two professional degrees, and the way they interact in class is very different from undergraduates and graduate students," she says. "They're not there to compete for grades, or to do something about their career. Instead, they want to know about the kinds of things that cannot be found in books, and they also want to know how to go about their own research once the class is over."

Prionas' summer-quarter course, "Modern Greece: In the Shadow of Homer, Plato and Alexander the Great," will shift from the history of the Greek language to today's headline-making news in the Mediterranean and Balkans. Although she has prepared a syllabus, Prionas says she's always ready to spend more or less time on a particular topic, depending on what cultural issues excite the class most.

Dance instructor Tony Kramer intends to be equally flexible in the "Jazz Dance for Beginners" course he'll be teaching this summer.

"CSP students are so open-minded that they're willing to try just about anything," says the modern-dance and improvisation performer. "In one class I taught last year I had a 26-year-old athletic lifeguard and a gentleman in his 70s who was waiting for bypass surgery, so I designed the course so that people could take it from wherever they were."

Kramer, a lecturer in dance at Stanford since 1986 and former company member of Wimmer, Wimmer and Dancers, will co-teach "Jazz Dance" with Robert Moses, a former member of Twyla Tharp Dance and the American Ballet Theater.

"Robert knows the newest dance styles, from street to hip hop, and I'll be introducing the Cakewalk, Lindy, blues and Charleston," says Kramer. "By the end of the course, I think students will be amazed by how much they have learned."

Kramer adds that many of his CSP students are Stanford staff members who get an especially "good deal" on the summer courses. Because all regular Stanford employees (50 percent time or more) are eligible to receive up to $140 per quarter to be applied to CSP tuition - in addition to the $140 in STAP funds available to them for job-enhancement courses, many staffers like to take advantage of the one-unit summer-quarter courses because they have to pay only the $25 registration fee out of their own pockets.

"Our university has for years and years stated that Stanford is a community and that faculty, students and staff at every level should expect to be part of the academic mission and vision," says Marsh McCall, professor of classics and dean of the Continuing Studies Program. "We like to think that CSP is the ideal answer to having that hope be realized."

CSP courses are taught in the evenings and are open to students who have a high school diploma or its equivalent. In addition, spouses of eligible employees and spouses of Stanford students receive a 20 percent discount on tuition. Registration is currently under way for the summer quarter, which starts June 27, and free course catalogs can be obtained by calling 725-2650. Space still is available in the following classes:

California and the Literary Imagination.


Political Psychology.

Frank Lloyd Wright.

Arab Culture and Society.

Modern Greece: In the Shadow of Homer, Plato and Alexander the Great.

Women in Classical Greece and Italy.

Jazz Dance for Beginners.

American Nature.

The Social History of Mental Illness in the United States.

Fundamentals of Music Appreciation.

Central Problems in Philosophy: Introduction to the Theory of Space and Time.

The Art of Coaching.

Intimate Relationships.

The Regulated Land.

Fiction Writing Workshop.


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