Advising is a vital aspect of Bennington’s planning process: all students are assigned a faculty advisor throughout their time at Bennington. First-year and transfer students also participate in orientation and are assigned an Academic Services advisor, and writing tutors are available for those students who would like to strengthen their writing skills.
Faculty advising is central to Bennington’s academic structure. All students are assigned a faculty advisor with whom they meet continually throughout their time at Bennington as the Plan deepens and develops. Advisors often meet with students in both one-on-one conversations and in small groups.
Serving as an advisor is a significant part of every faculty member’s work. As advisors, the faculty are both mentors and guides. They oversee the unfolding of the Plan process by helping students discover their distinctive intellectual passions and figure out how these interests might shape an education of depth, breadth, and rigor.
Advising for First-Year Students
Each entering first-year student will work with the director of the first-year experience. The director of the first-year experience answers questions and helps new students prepare for the academic year. As the year progresses, the director provides ongoing support to students in their academic, social, and personal development through a combination of individual meetings, skill-building workshops, and social events. In concert with faculty advisors, the director of the first-year experience helps students develop the habits of mind that contribute to success in the Plan process, providing structured opportunities to reflect upon and synthesize the various aspects of their academic experiences.
Peer Writing Tutors
No one graduates from Bennington who has not surmounted the challenge of being able to convey their ideas and their experiences in writing. In addition to the papers and projects they write for class, students articulate their goals and plans throughout the Plan process in a series of written essays. Students at all levels, and in all disciplines, are encouraged to work with peer writing tutors to develop their writing or research skills.