At Bennington, students work closely with faculty to design the content, structure, and sequence of their study and practice—their Plan—taking advantage of resources inside and outside the classroom to pursue their work.
Computer science is increasingly considered a core literacy. It is not only a rich field in its own right—with its own intellectual challenges, traditions and approaches to solving problems—but is indispensable in almost every other discipline. Bennington students can explore this field in a number of ways through project-based courses: they can choose to complement Plans in other disciplines or they can deeply explore computing and computational principles as part of a concentration in computer science.
Students with an interest in computer science can choose an entry point that suits their level of experience, interest and comfort—studying game design, introductory programming or other timely or timeless topics related to computer science. While the topics of these courses differ, they share goals that help students develop the technical skills and broader context needed advance in and beyond the discipline.
Bennington College Field Work Term (FWT) provides a broad range of experiences through internships with startups or major companies, giving students a taste of the wide array of opportunities available for students with a computer science background. FWT also provides opportunities for independent research both with Bennington faculty and computer science researchers at universities and private companies.
Jim Mahoney has mentored students in physics and computing for over thirty years in topics ranging from cosmology and chaos to cryptology and microcontrollers. His interests include simulations, data analysis, internet technologies, and the digital arts.