Senior Experience

Senior year at Bennington is a time of culmination, connection, and celebration. You're focused intensely on your advanced work, but you're also looking ahead to the opportunities that await you after commencement. Bennington is here to help you develop a well-rounded life after graduation, with engaging work that sustains you financially and a rich network of alumni supports.

Senior Programming 

Life After Bennington (LAB) Talks

The Life After Bennington series is intended to help students prepare for their personal and professional lives after graduation. Presented by alumni, staff, and faculty, LAB Talks are workshops intended to allow students a space to bring their questions about the world beyond Bennington, and cover topics ranging from graduate school to work/life balance to the brass tacks of health insurance.

Alumni Visits: A thread that connects Bennington students and alumni is the passion with which they pursue their work. Wrestling with the conceptual and the pragmatic, figuring out how to make the work matter, bringing in collaborators to give new dimension and perspective—these are just a few of the processes that animate life on campus and after Bennington. LAB Alumni Talks are designed as opportunities to bring together students and alumni to explore what it means to bring your work beyond Bennington.

Financial Fluency: To assist seniors with navigating the complex realities of financial and career decisions after Bennington, the Field Work Term and Career Development Office offers LAB Talks throughout the year, including sessions on finding values-driven work that pays fairly, paying off loans, negotiating salary, and navigating the gig economy. Check back soon for a full schedule.

Alumni Career Connections

To support students' careers, the offices of Alumni Relations and Field Work Term & Career Development connect students and new graduates to the alumni community. The Bennington alumni network can provide many types of advice and assistance, including answers to quick questions about work in a given field, job shadowing opportunities, informational interviewing, and long-term mentoring. If you'd like to be connected to alumni support, please fill out this form.

Senior Advising

Career Advising

Your senior year is a time to review what you’ve done to date, envision where you are headed, and determine how to build a strong bridge between the two. Whatever your goal for life after Bennington, the Field Work Term and Career Development Office is here to answer questions and give advice! Meet with a Career Development staff member to:

  • talk about your passions and skills and how they may translate into work after Bennington
  • learn about networking and alternative job search strategies
  • review your resume or cover letter 
  • practice mock interview questions
  • discuss salary negotiating techniques
  • review your social media profile for advice on optimizing it for professional purposes

Though senior advising is available anytime, during the spring term, there are senior drop-in hours every Thursday 12-2pm, and on Plan days in the spring term, advising in the FWT Office is reserved mostly for seniors. The Fall 2017 Plan days are November 2nd, 8th, and 14th. Make an appointment on Genbook and tell us what you hope to cover.  

Graduate School Advising

The decision to continue your education after Bennington is a significant one. Faculty members can provide important professional guidance on the significance of graduate study in careers in their discipline, and can recommend programs that might be a good fit for your interests. Noelle Murphy, associate director of academic services, also advises students on the application process.

Each spring, the College hosts a Graduate School Series, discipline-specific conversations with faculty and alumni about the role graduate study can play in your career. Conversations are typically wide-ranging and driven by student questions, and include discussion of how to decide if grad school is right for you, the impact of an advanced degree on your professional life, determining the right time to apply, selecting your program, preparing a compelling application, and funding your degree. Check back in the spring for event dates!

Grants and Fellowships Advising

Nationally competitive grants and fellowships can fund your graduate study or provide you with extraordinary opportunities to extend the work of your Plan after you graduate Bennington. Spend some time reviewing the options posted on our webpage and schedule a time to discuss your interests with Noelle Murphy, director of grants and fellowships and associate director of academic services.

Senior Opportunities

Kilpatrick Fellowships

Click here for more information about this yearly opportunity for graduating Bennington seniors.

Student Gift Program

As you complete your senior year at Bennington, remember that the Student Gift Program is an excellent way to give back to the college and support your fellow Bennington students. Your class is perfectly positioned to provide leadership in this very important initiative; for more information on how to participate, contact Cindy Luce.  

Celebrating Your Senior Year

There's a lot to look forward to and celebrate in your senior year. The College community will gather to welcome you to campus at the start of the fall term, and will mark your achievements with a reception at the end of the fall term to honor December graduates and, of course, with Commencement in the spring.