For all of you prospective students out there, march to your own beat! I know we say that casually, but Ringo Starr is so right. We are all little drummers just trying to find our own way. Bennington is a place designed to help you figure out what beat work for you. Not to be the sentimental Senior and all, but I am going to miss this place and I think my biggest take away is realizing that this community gave me the space and resources and challenges to develop my own beat. Soon Bennington will launch me into the world outside of college to continue to play that beat with Pride, after 4 trial launches of FWT of course :)

p.s. I also named my cat Ringo after this drummer!

-Alana ‘15

Hi, I am a teacher at Princeton Day School (Princeton, NJ) teaching a high-school class about checking credentials of writers/journalists/bloggers etc. They are currently reading Michael Pollan, and we see that he claims that he is a graduate of your college (B.A. English, 1977(. Can you confirm this please? Thank you, Reuben Loewy — Asked by Anonymous

Hey there!

While I hope you’re not teaching your students to use Tumblr as a reliable source for checking credentials, according to Michael Pollan’s CV from his website, his biography on wikipedia (which cites an interview posted on his website), AND the Bennington College Website, he did in fact attend here!

Hope this clears things up,

-Alex ‘16

 

Though I was initially confident in my choice for Bennington as my preferred college, after a friend gave me a "talking to," I can't help but ask: how valuable is a Bennington degree, with regard to the likelihood of getting a good job after graduation? — Asked by Anonymous

Well my friend, I suppose that depends what you are asking, and what kind of job you are looking for. When I graduate from Bennington this spring, President Mariko Silver will give me a sweet ole’ hug and then Isabel Roche, dean of the college, will hand me a piece of paper slapped into a leather folder that signifies in very few words that Rachael Meyers spent three years (transfer chick here) studying at this particular liberal arts college.

There are lots of employers out there who hear the name “Bennington” and get all giddy about our kick ass college. There are also those who may have very little association with our name. But honestly, the first thing an employer is going to look at is probably your resume, right? Well, in that case, the typical Bennington student graduates with at least four solid jobs on their resume and real experience in the field in which they study. None of my friends who recently graduated from other colleges and universities can say the same. I mean… just sayin’. (Sorry friends from other colleges, you are valuable to employers too!)

According to Bennington’s most recent alumni survey, 90% of respondents were employed full time or fully matriculated in a grad program. But if you’re wondering if we make this list: 

Forbes 50 College Diplomas With The Highest Pay

…well, I can’t say we do. If there were a list of colleges whose graduates were most likely to find an exciting and fulfilling job in their field upon graduation, however, I strongly suspect that’s a list we’d be on. Perhaps even in the top 5. PERHAPS even in the top 1. Perhaps…

On that note, this is the most important lesson you will learn today: 

Report: 95% Of Grandfathers Got Job By Walking Right Up And Just Asking

Love,

Rachael ‘15

How often does Bennington give scholarships? Do most students pay the full tuition? — Asked by Anonymous

Tuition.

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It’s not just you; the terror is entirely real for all of us. College is expensive and Bennington is an expensive college. Real talk: costly and scary.

That being said, the administration here also does an exceptional job of making this craziness affordable. Last (school) year, for instance, more than 90% of first-year students received grants or scholarships; the average value for each of these grants or scholarships was $29,000. That’s sans loans, sans work-study.

For specific questions, check out the website here ( http://www.bennington.edu/Admissions/financialaid/undergraduates.aspx ); if, once you’ve applied, you have questions specific to your situation, contact the office of financial aid. They’ll totally talk to you. It’s their job.

Stay excellent,

/\Will

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You may have seen Alan’s admissions-interns-in-high-school series on the blog these last few weeks.  Hopefully that’s defusing any ideas you may have had about us in the office being Cool People.  In a complementary effort to let y’all get to know us from a different angle than how we answer questions about the analytical essay, I’d like to introduce another ongoing post series.  Twice a week from here on out, for your edification and pleasure, we’ll be publishing interviews of admissions interns, conducted by other admissions interns.*  Enjoy.**

-Ray ‘15

*For MAXIMUM INTERN POWER.

**This is an imperative, not a suggestion.

Long weekend is just around the corner and all of us here in the office are GETTIN’ PUMPED. In the spirit of the upcoming weekend, we would like to re-release a video recorded by our very own Liam ‘14 and Ezra ‘13 a few years back. 

Here’s what a few of us on your friendly Monday afternoon shift have planned:

Alex: “I’m going mountain biking in the Northeast Kingdom….and then doing a lot of work on my Nature in the Americas midterm paper, in which I’ll be writing a natural biography of wheat”

Naima: “I am going to Cornell to visit a professor about grad school!! I will then come back and relax like no one’s business. I also have to write the above paper that Alex mentioned, focusing on the natural history of passenger pigeons”

Julia: “I’m planning on making some headway on my senior thesis but also getting in plenty of baking a cooking time. I’m trying to hunt down a food processor in order to make a from-scratch pumpkin pie! Also, I’m super stoked to go on a day trip to Burlington- it’s my first time!”

What are YOU planning on doing during those blissful 4 days?

Question for Sylvia: Your blog (ya i was creepin') says you have experienced every education system available? Could you tell a little more about your experiences, maybe compare them a bit? — Asked by Anonymous

Ha! Yes, that’s more or less true. The story of my education is kind of the story of my life. So I’ll try try to keep it as concise as possible, forgive my sentence fragments…

Pre-K to 3rd grade: Montessori school. I was both in charge of my own interests  and inspired about learning. Started learning to read and use an abacus in kindergarten, freedom of no desks and individualized pace.

4th grade to 6th grade: Home-schooled. Goat midwifery and running an egg business is now on my resume, studied whatever interested me with my mother as my teacher. The Vikings, French, ballet, art, and astronomy were areas of particular interest. I ran around in the woods a whole lot.

7th grade: Online-schooled. It was a rough time. I was no longer in control of my own education, and we had dial-up. I did, through a glitch in the system, end up taking a college-level course in geology, though. Plate tectonics are pretty cool.

8th grade: Local public school. It was… an intriguing social experiment. One of three liberals in the school, did not know how to serve a volley-ball, received three days of abstinence-only sex ed before finally deciding that this kind of education was just not for me. 

9th grade: Home-schooled again. I taught myself astronomy and the history of ancient Mesopotamia and traded goats for geometry lessons from a retired statistics teacher the next town over. Absolute, ecstatic academic freedom.

10th to 12th grade: boarding at a Friends’ School outside of Philadelphia — Characterized by a great education, the formative and challenging realization that exterior and interior authority were not in alignment.

And this all led me to Bennington. This is where all the questions (of authority and agency, of academic freedom, of reflection-based education, of learning through experience, etc.) eventually landed me. And the questions just keep coming! I allow my education to transform, ask myself to challenge the limits of my own agency, and explore what it means to be in the process of creating. Also, I love the mountains. If you have more questions, please feel free to contact me at sylviam@bennington.edu. I do love to talk about education. 

Good luck out there,

Sylvia M. ‘16

Picked This Lil’ Nugget Out of My Reading Today

"If our young men miscarry in their first enterprises they lose all heart.  If the young merchant fails, they say he is ruined.  If the finest genius studies at one of our colleges and is not installed in an office within one year afterwards in the cities or suburbs of Boston or New York, it seems to his friends and to himself that he is right in being disheartened and in complaining the rest of his life.  A sturdy lad from New Hampshire or Vermont, who in turn tries all the professions, who teams it, farms it, peddles keeps a school, preaches, edits a newspaper, goes to Congress, buys a township, and so forth, in successive years, and always like a cat falls on his feet, is worth a hundred of these city dolls.  He walks abreast with his days and feels no shame in not ‘studying a profession,’ for he does not postpone his life, but lives already.  He has not one chance, but a hundred chances.” — Emerson, Self-Reliance

Insert ladies here too.

And we’ve got something to chew on.

— Parke ‘15

#us in high school

#us in high school

Okay, so a while back there was a question about seniortis/grades dropping suddenly senior year, and I have something vaguely similar to that. I'm currently studying abroad and I had very limited knowledge of the language before I came, so my grades this year are not anywhere near up to par with my grades before due to the language barrier, is this probably going to be a huge issue? — Asked by Anonymous

Bennington likes to look at the whole of your educational career- so while I definitely can’t speak for the admissions committee, I think going abroad shows a lot of the qualities they generally look for in a Bennington student. You’re exploring new things, and challenging yourself. I think the admissions committee will be fairly understanding that your grades may drop in another country- there are so many factors (including the language barrier) that can affect things. I would say, do your best, and don’t worry about it too much- the experience you’re getting by going abroad is much more valuable than any grades you may receive while you’re there. 

~Maddy ‘16

*Fall Fashion Update*

Sam and Julia model Julia’s ~brand new line of hand dyed scarves~ she made in her textile class! The scarves’ rich violets and aubergine tones flow with the jean n’ sweater Mom n’ Pop look of these trendy young fashionistas.

Julia gets to spend Thursday afternoons with the fabulous Richard MacPike (Bennington’s Costume Shop Manager and textile dyeing wonder) learning about Shibori, a Japanese fabric dyeing technique that utilizes different resists (such as stitching, string, or in this case, acrylic clamps) to achieve some craZy wAvvy designs. 

xox Bton Fashion Police

I would not expect you to know the answer to this, but what are the most common personality types at Bennington? — Asked by Anonymous

Ok, all of us in the office just took the enneagram as well as the Myers Briggs personality test, and here’s all of the personality information we can give you:

My enneagram is 6, and my Meyers Briggs is ENFP. Jacqui’s enneagram is 4, and she’s ISFP. Rory is a 9, and his Meyers Briggs is ESFP. Emily’s enneagram is also a 6, and she’s an ESTJ. Glennis’s enneagram is a 2, and her Meyers Briggs is ISFJ.

That’s really all you need to know about us. You’re set!

Just kidding. Any answer that I could give would depend on the people that I specifically surround myself with. As far as my experience goes, I haven’t noticed a certain trend in personality types. There are a diverse range of people here and there’s not a specific “Bennington”  personality. Just like any other school, you can choose to spend time with as many different personality types as you would like — or not, it’s up to you.

If you have more questions about this, I’d love to talk to you more and you can email me at nilad@bennington.edu!

Nila ‘17

P.S. If you want to take Prom Party Dress’s enneagram test (you know you do!) you can do so here.

What is the party scene like? I'm a senior in high school and i'm curious how it goes down since Bennington is so small. — Asked by Anonymous

Hiya!!

Ah yes you’re not the first to wonder about party lyfe @ Bennington. Here are some great responses that admissions interns have given in the past.

((In MY humble opinion, the small size makes parties more goofy, funny, exciting, and fun in general - it’s COOL partying with people you know//know-from-afar-and-want-to-know-better))

Party on (or don’t, that’s also socially acceptable),

Chloe ‘16

Ok, so after I finish all of the required core classes to graduate high school, I really would love to steer away from math and science courses in senior year and focus on art and writing. I know that most seniors take science and math courses anyway because colleges are looking for them even though they are not "required". I was wondering if Bennington expects students to take these or if you can branch out into your interests without affecting Bennington's view of your student profile. — Asked by converttothecause

Oh bro(sis) you are lookin’ at the right place,

We L-O-V-E branching out! Really it would be the most exciting for the admissions team to see you doing something that engages, excites, compels, and tickles you, whatever That may be. We are not expecting anything subject-specific from you, just the ability to talk about//show us your questions, curiosity, and and satisfaction with whatever you’re engaging in.

Play awn,

Chloe ‘16