Find here details on Bread Loaf 100+, our program of remote tutorials for summer 2021.
Bread Loaf 100+
Building on the lessons of our 2020 Summer of Writing, our 2021 program—Bread Loaf 100+—will again operate remotely. We will offer small group tutorials: the Advanced Writing Tutorial (2 units), which will allow students to pursue major creative, critical, and pedagogical projects; and the Tutorial in Critical Writing (1 unit), which will concentrate on writing practices. The session will run for six weeks, from June 21 to July 30, with tutorial meeting times set by faculty in consultation with their students.
Read full descriptions of the Advanced Writing Tutorial and Tutorial in Critical Writing.
Read comprehensive details about our Bread Loaf 100+ session within our FAQ page.
Summer 2021: About Our Decision to Go Fully Remote
A Message from the Dean and Associate Director
The pandemic has had an impact on all of us, changing our methods of teaching, learning, interacting, and simply going about our daily lives. Bread Loaf too has had to adapt. In summer 2020, we offered a uniquely individualized remote program, tailored to our community’s particular needs and resources. Although we had anticipated returning to our campuses in 2021, we have made the choice for 2021 to run a remote program instead, Bread Loaf 100+, building on our experiences from the previous summer.
Why that decision? Although we are hopeful that pandemic conditions will continue to improve, we could not go forward with “business as usual” with widespread immunity still months away. Accordingly, since we began our planning in August, we explored many alternatives, guided by Covid-related local, state, and college mandates, by CDC recommendations, and by our own imperatives to protect our collective health and well-being, to ensure Bread Loaf’s integrity in the short and long term, and to provide an inclusive educational experience.
The challenges were many. They include:
- sustained uncertainty about the pandemic’s trajectory;
- quarantine requirements that would disrupt in-person tutorials and activities for a substantial part of the session and that could conflict with participants’ professional obligations at the beginning or end of the summer;
- full or partial exclusion of non-resident faculty, student and faculty families, and outside speakers or other campus guests from participation in the program;
- restrictions to residential and academic life, such as limits on the size and nature of communal gatherings (including meals); limited or no travel to off-campus recreational or commercial sites; reduced capacity of on-site living, dining, classroom, computer lab, and study spaces;
- on the Vermont mountain campus, the lack of infrastructure necessary for supplementing socially-distanced residential life, including medical support as well as indoor recreational facilities, bookstores, and convenience stores ordinarily available to us on the downtown Middlebury campus;
- the uneven vaccine roll-out, with eligibility for the vaccine not yet a guarantee of its availability from state to state.
In assessing our options, we considered feedback from our 2020 students and faculty (with 95% of respondents ranking the remote learning experience very satisfactory or satisfactory). We also consulted with the Bread Loaf faculty, staff, and Advisory Board, with internal and external crisis management experts, and with the Middlebury administration. We concluded that the only way for us to ensure our health, strength, and inclusiveness as an academic community this summer was to offer a remote program, which can operate without regard to participants’ vaccination status, to local, state, or other external mandates, and to other complications the Covid-environment presents to our students, faculty, and staff.
We are excited about the remote options that we have designed for this summer:
- a one-unit tutorial, open to all students, providing them intensive instruction and practice in strategies for critical writing;
- and a two-unit tutorial centered on a focused body of material (author, text, topic, or genre) which will ground students’ pursuit of their own independent creative, critical, and pedagogical projects.
The Bread Loaf Acting Ensemble will be with us this summer (newly) to support the tutorial experience. Enabling and inspiring all this work also is what participants valued so highly last summer: a sustained opportunity for faculty and students to work together at close range.
We are eager to return to our campuses and to reconnect in person, emboldened by new understandings of how we learn and teach. When we do return (in 2022), we’ll do so knowing more about what we can achieve collectively. In the meantime, we look forward to the imaginative experience that we will co-create this summer.
Emily Bartels, Dean
Lyndon Dominique, Associate Director