Bennington College Postbac Program
J. Foley, Director
The Postbac program is a one year course of study that enables students who have an undergraduate degree in any field to take the required courses for application to medical
school, veterinary school, or any number of other health professions. One-year students attend a summer session where they do two semesters of chemistry in a ten week term. The next year students take one more semester of chemistry, cell biology, two semesters of physics, animal physiology, biochemistry, and optional math courses. During the Field Work Term (January-February) students can volunteer with local organizations, do internships at Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, work with faculty on current research or do internships anywhere in the country or abroad.
The summer chemistry classes are just Postbac students while the Fall and Spring classes are integrated with Bennington undergraduates. Our classes stress cooperative approaches to learning and a hands on approach to doing science. Our Postbac students have great success getting into medical school and many comment that our problem solving approach helps them understand the material they learn in medical school.
As part of our program we try to insure that students get experience in the medical/hospital setting. Our agreement with Southwestern Vermont Medical Center enables students to volunteer in the Emergency Room and shadow doctors both in the hospital and in their private practices. During our Field Work Term (usually from the Christmas holiday until the end of Ferbuary) students have another opportunity to do internships. Students can choose to work in a lab setting or do medical volunteer work in another area of the country or outside the country. In recent years we have had students go to Guatemala, China, and Thailand for Field Work Term experiences. Other students work with Bennington faculty on research topics.
Medical School Advising
We work with students from the beginning of the program to develop the best possible application to the professional school of their choice. We get to know you very well and can
help you analyze the strengths and weaknesses of your application. We regularly meet to discuss the application process and the timeline as well as work individually to construct lists of schools and practice interview skills. A Premed committee evaluation letter is written for each student who successfully completes the program. This is kept on file along with other reference letters for the application process. As a member of the National Association of Advisors for the Health Professions I have access to the latest information and advice for students about the Medical School Admissions process.