FWT Registration and Approval

Registration for the Summer 2022 Field Work Term is due April 29 on Handshake.

Need help registering your FWT position?

Register your FWT via the Request An Experience form on Handshake. Preview the registration questions and gather your information ahead to expedite the registration process. You may also schedule a Handshake Navigation appointment and an SCA will walk you through registration.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will there be a fine if I register late?

No. In recognition of student costs, this fine was discontinued in the 2016-17 cycle.

Will there be a penalty to my assessment if I register late?

Not directly. Based on feedback from SEPC and APC, we have discontinued the prior practice of penalizing students for late registrations. Instead, we assess whether students took early steps to communicate effectively to potential employers. These required steps were: the first application / FWT proposal and the creation of a Handshake profile, including the import of a current resume. Read more about FWT assessments.

If there is no penalty, why is there a due date at all?

Processing each student registration involves several steps, including verifying registration information, receiving approval from employers, consulting with advisors, reviewing learning objectives, and more. Because of the volume of registrations (over 700 records processed by a staff of two) and because of occasional employer response lag time—it can take several weeks to confirm if your registration is approved, which pushes right up against the end of term. In case anything goes wrong in the process, the College needs to start reviewing now, to ensure that we can troubleshoot any issues with you in advance of your departure for winter break.

When is the absolute latest day to apply?

Per College policy, all FWT registrations must occur by the last day of classes. If students are not in touch with the FWT office, a FWT assessment of Fail would be issued. However, the FWT Office will always accommodate a student in the case of a documented, verifiable emergency or medical concern. The important thing is to be in active communication with the FWT office to make sure that your needs are documented and addressed.

I know where I’m working but I’m missing some information. Should I still submit my registration?

Yes! You can always go back to your registration and change information later, but it puts you at risk of not receiving confirmation in time if you delay. If you are missing any details about your employer site, please just note this on the registration and/or email fwt@bennington.edu. If the missing information relates to a position listed in Handshake, we can also contact the employer for you and save you time.

I’m still deciding between two FWT options. Can I register one FWT now and then change?

Yes, you can change later, but be careful about leading an employer to think that you are going to work with them and then canceling, as this can negatively impact your reputation with employers in your industry. Want advice? Schedule a time to meet with one of our career counselors.

I am planning to study away or considering a leave of absence. Do I still need to register?

Students with applications in process for a leave of absence or study away opportunity do not need to register; the Field Work Term office will be advised of final status by the Dean's Office.

How do I get funding and find housing for FWT?

Please find information on FWT funding options here, including eligibility criteria for need-based grants of up to $500. As noted, due to limited funding, grants are limited to students assessed by Financial Aid as having highest need. Questions about need levels can be directed to finaid@bennington.edu. Students can find information on FWT housing options on the Housing Over Field Work Term page.

How to Register

Registering for FWT takes about 10 minutes. To begin, log into Handshake and select “Career Center > Experiences” from the top menu.

Navigate to “Request an Experience” and fill out the form that appears.

  • Choose the appropriate winter, summer, or fall-spring term as the Term.

  • Choose the appropriate Experience Type based on the type of field work experience you are completing (see Field Work Term Options for details). For an internship, choose “Field Work Term Site Registration” as the Experience Type.

  • Fill out the details about your employer, job, supervisor, and learning objectives.

  • First year students: remember that your supervisor is your listed FWT employer, not your first year advisor.

If you are planning to work with two employers over FWT, you must request each as a separate "experience." You do not need to specify exactly how many hours you are working at each site; however, it is your responsibility to make sure that your documented hours, confirmed by each employer, add up to 200 hours completed within the FWT period.

FWT Approval

Once you "request an experience" on Handshake, the FWT Office will:

  • Review your FWT position information and your learning objectives; email your faculty advisor regarding any issues; and discuss any concerns with you if they arise.
  • Confirm eligibility of your FWT employer by verifying the site's legitimacy, checking supervisor background, and scanning for any record of employer concern.
  • Contact the registered site supervisor to confirm the position description and work terms that you have registered. Your employer is also required to e-sign this student-employer agreement.

Your registration status is considered complete only after it receives supervisor confirmation and FWT Office approval. Students will receive an email at their Bennington address within two to three weeks following registration to notify them whether their FWT position has been fully approved. (If additional information or corrections are needed, students have one week to correct the problem before being marked late.)