Students accepted into the Kaplan Humanities Scholars Program are also invited to participate in the Kaplan Pre-Orientation program!

Inspired by the highly popular Humanities Plunge, the Kaplan Pre-Orientation is designed to foster student engagement with some of the best cultural programs on offer in Chicago, and through experiential learning, to begin participating in Kaplan's intellectual conversations--and at the same time, to start developing friendships with fellow Kaplan Scholars.

  • Program dates: Friday, September 8-Sunday, September 10, 2017
  • Early Move-In! Pre-Orientation participants move into their university housing three days earlier than the rest of the incoming class!
  • The cost of all excursions and all meals while on the program are covered by Kaplan

Enrollment: students accepted into the Kaplan Scholars Program will be invited to participate in the Pre-Orientation after they are accepted; participation in the Pre-Orientation is completely optional, though once a Scholar commits to participation in the Pre-Orientation, we consider it a binding agreement to participate.

Sample Schedule

To get a sense of the program, please view the 2016 Pre-Orientation schedule. This 2016 schedule should only be used as a reference. The full 2017 Pre-Orientation schedule will be shared with Pre-Orienatation participants in summer 2017.


8:00 AM-12:30 AM: Obtain keys from Neighborhood Desks; move into dorms/res colleges; wildcards are available in the Kaplan Institute, Kresge Hall, Room 2-350

12:30 PM: Lunch and Introductions, meet in Kaplan Institute, Kresge Hall, Room 2-360

2:30 PM - 4:30 PM: Second City Improv Workshop, 1616 N Wells St, Chicago, IL (Old Town)

5:00 PM: Dinner @ Goose Island BrewPub, 1800 N Clybourn Ave, Chicago, IL

6:30 PM: Explore Old Town Neighborhood

8:00 PM: Second City MainStage Performance (meet at the Second City entrance at 7:30 PM), 1616 N Wells St, Chicago, IL


10:00 AM: Coffee & Debrief, meet in Kaplan Institute, Kresge Hall, Room 2-360

12:00 PM: Lunch @ Rezas, 255 N Clark St, Chicago, IL

1:15 PM: Guided Tour of the Kerry James Marshall exhibition at the MCA, Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL

3:30 PM: Architectural Boat Tour, Chicago's First Lady, Boat Tour Agency, 112 E Upper Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL

5:30 PM: Dinner @ Ethiopian Diamond, 6120 N Broadway St, Chicago, IL

7:30 PM: Introduction to the Instigation Orchestra and Djaspora with Roell Schmidt, Executive Director of Links Hall

8:30 PM: The Instigation Orchestra with Djaspora at Links Hall, Links Hall, 3111 N Western Ave, Chicago, IL


10:30 AM: Coffee and debrief of Links Hall Performance with Prof. Susan Manning, meet in Kaplan Institute, Kresge Hall Room 2-360

12:00 PM: Reading with Parneshia Jones and Megan Stielstra, Bookends and Beginnings, 712 Sherman Ave, Evanston

1:15 PM: Lunch and Debrief, meet in Kaplan Institute, Kresge Hall Room 2-360