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You’re a Feb! Here’s What That Means.

Congratulations! As a Feb, you’ve been admitted as part of a 50-year Middlebury tradition. Each year, about 20 percent of the first-year class begins in February rather than September. Our Febs are among the most highly motivated and academically passionate students we select each year—so you should definitely consider yourself to be in great company.

The Feb Class of 2025.5 will include approximately 100 other first-year students. In addition to being part of a select cohort, you also get to benefit from an extra semester—we call it a “Febmester”—between high school and college to pursue your interests, work, or take some well-deserved downtime.

You’ll complete your Middlebury degree in four full years with a special February outdoor Commencement. You’re included in the formal College Commencement exercises in May, too. You even get a “.5” added to the end of your class year. 

Maybe you were hoping to be accepted as a Feb. Maybe you’re just figuring out what it means. Either way, we hope you’re excited to join this tradition of adventurous students who aren’t afraid to do things a bit differently.

About February Admission Febmester Resources

The Feb Experience

Fabulous Febs

My name’s Roya. I’m from Los Angeles, California, and for my Febmester, the first month I wanted to make some money, so I worked in my elementary school as like a TA.

I’m Jacob. I’m from Calais, Vermont, and I volunteered in a refugee camp in Lesbos, Greece.

I hiked the Continental Divide trail.

I worked as a fishing guide in Chile.

I studied Environmental Science in Bocas del Toro, Panama.

I spent three months in Indonesia going all across the country, doing different home stays.

[Interviewer] And what are you pumped about coming to Middlebury?

What am I pumped about? Definitely the thing I’m most excited for is all the people.

I ski all the time, so I’m excited for the Snow Bowl.

Being in a classroom again. I’m so excited to like learn, and the classes are so amazing.

My Feb Story: Claire Contreras ’22.5

Hello, my name is Claire Contreras. I’m a sophomore Feb from Washington, D.C. I live in Pearsons, and I’m a conservation biology major. I was really excited to be accepted as a Feb and get to take some time off. I was still learning a lot over my Febmester, but it was a really different type of learning. I worked for the Student Conservation Association. I was part of a team of six people that cleared trails in public parks in D.C. It was super fun and super empowering. Now that I’m at Middlebury, and I had that time off, I think I’m a lot more independent. I joined some things that I was not involve in in high school. I do radio. Welcome back, beautiful listeners. You’re listening to 91.1 FM Middlebury College Radio. And I’m part of Sunday Night Environment Group, which is an amazing organization on campus. We do things like we planned the climate strike this past fall.

This is looking like it’s going to be the largest mobilization for climate justice ever, which is huge and exciting—

Aside from academics and extracurriculars, in my free time, I mostly just hang out with friends. We go hiking, we go to The Knoll, which is the organic farm on campus. We go into town and get yummy food. We cook together, and we watch movies. We hang out, go to shows. There’s a lot of comedy shows, dance shows, theater. The Feb community is probably one of my favorite parts about being a Feb. Being in a group that was small enough that we could all talk to each other was really awesome, and I think it’s a really great part of Middlebury and a really great part of being a Feb. I really feel like I’ve made strong connections here at Middlebury. I really feel these friends that I have here are friends that I’ll have for my whole life, which is a really awesome experience.

Tips for Febs!

Speaker 1:
Feb tip, only make bagels in the dining hall. Don’t go after those quesadillas.

Speaker 2:
Always go to lunch at Atwater.

Speaker 3:
Take some time to do something that’s unplanned.

Speaker 4:
Do not take yourself too seriously.

Speaker 5:
Take advantage of the microwave in Proc.

Speaker 6:
Check out the climbing wall. It’s so much fun and easy to go. And it’s a great time.

Speaker 7:
If you like skiing, but don’t have a car, life hack, you can take the ACTR. And then you can take a nap, or do your homework, on the bus.

Speaker 8:
The Atwater dining halls to have the best panini presses.

Speaker 9:
Know where the money is. You can get funding for winter term workshops, for research…

Speaker 10:
For snowboarding.

Speaker 9:
For outings. Yeah, snowboarding.

Speaker 10:
[crosstalk 00:00:34]. Literally anything.

The Febmester

Making the most of your “pause” before college.

One of the most exciting things about being accepted to Middlebury as a Feb is getting to plan your Febmester—what we call the semester before you attend orientation and then begin classes at Middlebury.

The Febmester is a great time to get yourself grounded and take a breath before beginning your college life at Middlebury. Our Febs say that their Febmester opportunity was one of the very best things about becoming a Feb.

What can you do?

You may choose to work to earn money to save, to support yourself, or to contribute to your family. You may get an internship or decide to devote some time to a project or interest that is personally meaningful to you.

If circumstances allow, you may be able to travel or visit with friends and relatives.

Here are some ideas from our students’ recent Febmesters:

  • Working on an organic farm
  • Volunteering in a local kindergarten
  • Fishing in Alaska
  • Working as a wildlife technician at a local national park
  • Studying German in Berlin
  • Working at a hometown restaurant
  • Attending a National Outdoor Leadership School program
  • Hiking the length of Vermont
  • Catching up on reading and classic movies
  • Interning at the Children’s Defense Fund

Let us know if you’d like to learn more about how to make the most of this time!

Frequently Asked Questions

A

Febs don’t need to catch up at all. You arrive right on time in early February with the rest of the Class of 2025.5—with four full years ahead to complete your requirements and make the most of your time at Middlebury. 

A

Your Middlebury degree will be formally awarded to you at our official Commencement in May. However, as a Feb you’ll complete your academic work at the end of winter term. You can then enjoy a special outdoor ceremony, unique to Middlebury, in which you can process down the hill at Middlebury’s Snow Bowl in full cap and gown—on skis, snowboards, snowshoes, or sleds.

A

Yes! You can be certain that you and your fellow Febs have equally impressive academic records as those who begin at Middlebury in September. All Middlebury students, regardless of their start date, are evaluated for admission by the same rigorous standards. 

A

You and your fellow Febs will arrive on campus for Feb Orientation in early February, after our winter “J-term” concludes. You’ll get to know Middlebury and your new classmates during this week while other Middlebury students are away on break before spring semester begins. You’ll register for classes, meet with your advisor, and learn about all the clubs and activities you can join. You’ll be ready to start class with the full student body when they return to campus. 

A

We don’t expect that earning college credit will be your priority during your “Febmester.” If you choose to take one or more college courses, however, please refer to our “Feb Guide to Transfer Credit and Study Abroad” located at go.middlebury.edu/febmester. For additional questions, contact Kerrin Hoff, associate registrar, at 802-443-5069 or khoff@middlebury.edu.

A

Yes, you should expect to have a roommate assigned to you. Before arriving, you’ll be asked to complete an online housing questionnaire where you’ll be asked about your lifestyle, interests, housing preferences, and needs. First-year Febs are generally housed in doubles with other first-year Febs within our first-year/sophomore residential communities. 

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