COVID-19: Essential Information

The First Year Seminar Program

A first year seminar is a small discussion-based class specifically tailored to the needs of incoming students and designed to serve as their entry point to liberal arts education at Middlebury. 

Each seminar is organized around a unique, intellectually intriguing topic, but all seminars share learning goals that aim to familiarize recent high-school graduates with the standards for college-level work in thinking, speaking, writing, and contributing to an academic community.

Middlebury faculty from across the College design and teach individual seminars and also serve as advisors to all the students in their class until these students declare a major.  First year seminars thus provide the essential foundation for strong mentoring relationships to develop.  They are a signature element of Middlebury’s curriculum and a powerful catalyst for student bonding within our small residential setting.

First Year Gathering on Academics

In the Summer of 2020, as the College prepared for its first full semester under COVID conditions, the First-Year Seminar program convened a Town Hall Gathering to briefly introduce new students to the First-Year Seminar Program and to address questions or concerns related to these foundational seminars and to broader academic opportunities for the first semester.  We welcomed questions from incoming students in that online gathering, and we share here their questions and our answers about beginning your first term at Midd.