Finding the Right College Fit: Bennington College

There are over 4,000 colleges and universities in the U.S. And while the media tends to focus on just a handful of schools, we at College Coach encourage students to think outside the box during their college selection process and explore a wide range of colleges. As such, we are highlighting a new college each week in our School Spotlight series. Check out the college below, along with the other posts in our series, and you may just stumble upon your dream school!

School Spotlight: Bennington College
Bennington, VT

Optional grades and no pre-determined majors? While this may sound farfetched to some students, at Bennington College it’s the norm. Known for phenomenal programs in writing and the arts, Bennington isn’t your traditional liberal arts college. For starters, it’s small – just 700 undergraduates spread out among 440 acres in southwestern VT. And the dorms here are called houses. Students really do become part of a family community, and they gather each Sunday night to discuss the week’s events. Are you vegetarian or vegan? The dining hall always provides plenty of options for those abstaining from meat, such as quinoa cake with tomato chutney or vegan oatmeal cookies. Majors at Bennington are called areas of interest, and all students work closely with a team of faculty advisors to chart their own unique academic journeys, better known as Plans. To help ground students’ work in a practical, hands-on way, Bennington requires that all students participate in an annual Field Work Term, spanning seven weeks each winter. FWT affords students the opportunity to leave campus in order to pursue jobs or internships, both domestically and abroad. Fun fact: The Goldfinch, which won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for fiction, was written by Bennington alumna Donna Tartt.

Image Credit: Top, Courtesy of Bennington College


Written by Elyse Krantz
Elyse Krantz is a member of College Coach’s team of college admissions experts. Elyse received her BA in linguistics from Dartmouth College and her MA from Teachers College, Columbia University. Prior to joining College Coach, Elyse worked as an admissions officer at Barnard College and Bennington College. Visit our website to learn more about Elyse Krantz.