Humanities Institute

Free Minds Project

Free Minds Project

The Free Minds Project provides Central Texas adults living on low to moderate incomes with a chance to fulfill their intellectual potential and to "jumpstart" their college education. In the Free Minds Project, students explore new ways of thinking about themselves and about their world by studying important works of literature, history, philosophy, and art. Founded in 2006 by the Humanities Institute, Free Minds has served eleven classes of students as well as its more than one hundred alumni and developed strong community partnerships with Austin Community College, Foundation Communities, Creative Action, and others.

Foundation Communities is now the primary home of Free Minds. The Humanities Institute provides academic support, and director Pauline Strong teaches American History and Anthropology in the programFree Minds has received generous support from TG, the KDK-Harman Foundation, the Webber Family Foundation, the Sooch Foundation, Austin Community Foundation, and private donors, in addition to Foundation Communities, Austin Community College, and the University of Texas at Austin.

Free Minds is directed by Vive Griffith, who can be reached by phone at (512) 610-7961 or by email at The program's current website can be accessed here.

Please visit Free Minds In the News for press accounts.

"The Free Minds Project is a wonderful opportunity for our residents and neighbors—a chance to grow that they would never otherwise get." —Walter Moreau, Executive Director, Foundation Communities

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  • Humanities Institute

    University of Texas at Austin
    Office Address: SAC 4.138
    Mailcode F1900
    Austin, Texas 78712