Inside a Rollins Classroom

September 15, 2023

By Adrienne Egolf

Rollins College English professor Jana Mathews engages students in class discussion.
Photo by Scott Cook.

In small classes, big things happen. Through open discussion, hands-on learning, and close-knit mentorship from faculty who know your goals and dreams, you emerge as a confident critical thinker ready to make your mark.

When you walk into a classroom at Rollins, you don’t have to worry about finding a seat near the front—your professor is going to engage with everyone in the room. And you don’t have to worry about being put on the spot and not having the correct answer—you’re here for a discussion, a sharing of ideas. You’ll show up ready to participate—whether it’s a round-table discussion on German literature or a breakdown of a complex mathematical equation or a presentation about Taylor Swift’s latest promotional campaign—because you know your perspective is valued.

You’re here to learn, to deepen your understanding of the world, to take one more step toward your postgraduate goals. In small classes designed around discussion, personal attention, and the development of 21st-century skills like critical thinking and collaboration, you’ll learn how to think, not what to think. So have a seat ... anywhere.

Math students and professor collaborate on a project.
Photo by Scott Cook.
Wyatt Deihl

“Open discussion of the material allowed me to learn from diverse perspectives and engage with the course content on a much deeper level. I felt comfortable hearing and sharing personal details because the small class sizes created a space where I came to know and trust my peers and professors.”

Wyatt Deihl ’21, MPH Candidate
Yale School of Public Health

Carla Daza

“The opportunity for collaboration is bountiful. Even in my math classes, we shared how we solved problems on the white board and learned from each other about how we approached difficult questions. Now I talk through problems and brainstorm solutions every day. Rollins was filled with opportunities to do just that, so it comes naturally in my work.”

Carla Daza ’20, Data Scientist

A Rollins student and professor work closely together in class.
Photo by Scott Cook.
Skylar Knight

“At Rollins, the professors tailor their approach to the individual student and they really care about your success. They hold you more accountable, which means you get so much more out of your education. You can’t just show up to class and be a fly on the wall.”

Skylar Knight ’19
Program Analyst,
U.S. Department of the Treasury

Rebecca Charbonneau and Kim Dennis

“[Art history professor] Kim Dennis went above and beyond helping shape my academic path. If she hadn’t encouraged me to study abroad and go to Rome, I wouldn’t have visited the Museo Galileo, which is a history of astronomy museum, and realized that I could combine my passions for astronomy and history into a career.”

Rebecca Charbonneau ’16, Jansky Fellow
National Radio Astronomy Observatory

Chemistry students and professor work together in the lab.
Photo by Scott Cook.
Brandon McNichol

“My Rollins education helped me stand out when I applied for medical school. Everyone who applies is smart and studies biochem, but I was a stronger candidate because I brought my passion for music and my liberal arts background to the table.”

Brandon McNichol ’19
Med Student,
Northwestern University

Josephine Spiegelberg

“My first year at Rollins, I had a physics class with Dr. Chris Fuse that opened a new door. It led to doing research with him that same year, and he made it my project. He gave me advice, but he always empowered me to lead my own way.”

Josephine Spiegelberg ’20
PhD Candidate, Applied Physics
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology

A Rollins professor leads a discussion in an outdoor classroom.

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