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Students film a scene for their Collaborative Video Projects course during winter term.

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Ray, Sarah C.
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Winter Term ’19 Is Here

January 9, 2019

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. – It’s the third day of winter term and, as if on cue, snow has blanketed the town and the weather forecast calls for 8–15 inches in the mountains. For many students, the four-week session is a time for both intense study—perhaps a lab class or a foreign language—and an opportunity to try something completely different—maybe learning to swing dance or ski.

Winter term gives students a chance to focus on one course for 20 days. And, with well over 100 courses to choose from, they have many great options. Some enroll in traditional courses, while others explore a subject in a manner that could only take place during winter term. Several students, for example, will be learning and practicing population genetics, ecology, genomics, biogeochemistry, and site mapping during a trip to Abaco Island, Bahamas. Back on campus, another cohort will spend intensive days and evenings building innovation and leadership skills in MiddCORE.

Some students are drawn to the opportunity to see a creative project through from start to finish. In the course The American Musical in Performance students will learn, rehearse, and perform a fully staged production of  Stephen Sondheim's Sunday in the Park with George. A similar creative energy fuels Collaborative Video Projects, where students team up to write, shoot, edit, and produce original work to be screened at the end of the term. And at the Mahaney Arts Center, members of the Dance Company of Middlebury work with guest choreographers to develop a production that will be performed on campus and go on tour.

In addition to classes, students can select from nearly 50 noncredit workshops, many of which are led by fellow students. Want to try powerlifting or learn to survive a Vermont winter night outdoors? It’s covered. Or maybe you’re fascinated with yeast? Fermentation Nation teaches all about sourdough and kombucha.

Many of the workshops, such as ice climbing, backcountry backpacking, and hunter safety, prep students for Vermont environs. Other sessions, such as tumbling, tapping, skating, and hula hooping—all for beginners—let students pursue activities that may have always intrigued, yet eluded, them.

The winter session runs from January 7 through February 1, concluding with a celebration of the midyear graduates, better known as “Febs,” on February 2. A complete listing of winter term courses can be found here.

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