Bennington Postbac Premed Program

“I will always think of Bennington as the place where I discovered science, where I found questions I never knew I had.” –Amy, Postbac Alumna
Recent Tweets @BennPostbacProg
Interesting Stuff

Nicely written article describing the evolution of surgical practices, medical culture, and a glimpse at the life of a surgical resident.


Stanford Med is doing an amazing series on “surgeons at work”. There are stories of people’s journey to becoming a surgeon, exciting new frontiers in surgery, and people’s thoughts regarding the future of medicine. 

This specific set of photos are by Dr. Max Aguilera-Hellweg. The emotion of the OR that this image captures is amazing right?

Another great shot by a student during Cell Bio lab - Julia, postbac ‘15, snapped this picture through the lens of her microscope. On the slide: HeLa (Henrietta Lacks) chromosomes.

Our students snap some great pics during labs! Lawrence, postbac ‘15, captured this shot of his copper solution during the Copper Spectroscopy Lab, and fellow student Shane examining the results in his beaker. 

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Does the application still take SAT scores from more than six years ago? Or is it better that I take the GRE before I apply? Thanks so much!
benningtonpostbac benningtonpostbac Said:

Hi- we do accept SAT scores that are older. You may submit them as a part of your high school transcript or scan and upload them in the application. If you feel that GRE scores would more accurately reflect your academic abilities you may submit them instead. Here is a link to our FAQ page. Let us know if you have more questions- we’ll be happy to try and answer them for you.

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Do students who are accepted into the postbac program generally include GRE, SAT, or other standardized test scores in their applications? Would failure to include test scores put an otherwise qualified applicant at a disadvantage? How strongly do the scores weigh in determining whether an applicant is accepted?
benningtonpostbac benningtonpostbac Said:

Hello and thanks for the questions. Bennington does encourage the submission of test scores in the Postbac Premed application and the majority of applicants do include them. However, we recognize them as just one part of the whole and each application is read taking all components into consideration. While it can be helpful to evaluate a candidate’s experience in standardized test-taking we do place more importance on the essay, resume and letters of recommendation. Let us know if you have other questions- we’ll be happy to talk with you.

Asker Anonymous Asks:
How long is the program
benningtonpostbac benningtonpostbac Said:

Bennington’s Postbac Premed Program is one year, beginning in mid-June and ending in early June the following year. For more information, follow the link to our website- you can request an information packet or speak with the program coordinator. Thanks for the question!

#TBT to last week’s impromptu MCAT study session with Physiology professor Betsy Sherman. How cool is Betsy? -not only does she offer to review kidney function with some of our new alums, she does it wearing shades.

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Hello- Bennington seems like a wonderful program. When are the applications open for the June 2015 term?
benningtonpostbac benningtonpostbac Said:

Hi- glad to hear Bennington’s program sounds like it may be a good fit for you. The application for the 2015-16 year opens in early September. In the meantime, if you’d like more information from us, follow this link to our website and fill out the Request Information form (if you haven’t yet) and we will send a packet out to you. You may also contact us by email or phone- we’d be happy to have a conversation.

Summer term has begun!

The Postbac Class of 2015 is finishing their first full week of classes. Here’s a #FlashbackFriday photo to Orientation -

A warm (albeit rainy) welcome to the Postbac Class of 2015! Program Director Dr Janet Foley greets new students during a sheltered picnic attended by President Mariko Silver and family along with Dean Isabel Roche, Associate Dean Duncan Dobbleman, science faculty, staff and new postbac alumni. 

In case you were wondering…


The World Cup kicks of this evening - but the ball being used wouldn’t be possible without the help of some synthetic materials. Here’s a look at the different polymers used in its manufacture, about which you can read more here:

(via atomicallena)

Our newly renovated Chem Lab awaits the Postbac Class of 2015. Summer term starts this week! (at Bennington College)

Congrats to the Bennington Postbac Class of 2014! We know you’ll do awesome things!

Tomorrow is Sciencepalooza Posterfest!

Here’s a #tbt look at last spring’s poster presentations. This year’s event will feature, as always, many posters from students doing original research in a range of courses. 

Where?: The hallowed halls of Dickinson Science Center 
When?: 12:30 to 1:30 

And, as always, there will be lots of food, drinks and, of course, sublimely scintillating science.

Notes from our Alums

We heard recently from Postbac 2012 alumna Mia McNulty. Thanks for writing, Mia!

"Now that I’m nearly finished with my first year of medical school at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, it’s hard for me to believe that it was three years ago when I moved across the country to a town called Bennington. I knew I wanted to be a doctor, but I couldn’t exactly imagine what a postbaccalaureate year in southwest Vermont would look like… eleven strangers, safety goggles, and lots of chemicals in beakers? It was a bit of a leap of faith for me to enter the world of science after an undergraduate experience that was distinctly non-science. I picked Bennington because I wanted to work among students that were collaborative and encouraging. Three years later, I look back on the year I spent studying around a wood stove with my classmates (how Vermont-esque!) and I’m glad I chose to begin my science career at Bennington. It was a challenging year to be sure, but I learned the science and reasoning skills critical for success on the MCAT and in medical school. 

"I returned home to Colorado to spend my Field Work Term in an orthopaedics lab at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. I ended up returning to the lab during my glide year, and am still working there now. I was given two stipends from the Dept. of Orthopaedics: one for doing research this summer and one for a research elective during my fourth year. We study the progression of osteoarthritis in diabetes, a topic that is becoming increasingly important to the American health landscape.

"To be sure, medical school has been a difficult experience (it’s crazy how fast time is going and how much ground we have covered in the last 8 months). Much of my time is spent studying from textbooks, but even as a first year student our school has us working with real patients on a regular basis. I work with the preceptor in the pediatric ED. Independently, I take the patient history, do a physical exam, and present the patient to my preceptor. Together we discuss the diagnosis and treatment plan for the patient. This is helping me to practice the skills I will need when I begin my clinical rotations in less than a year as a baby MS3. Although I am an in-state student, CU takes a lot of out-of-state students and a lot of my classmates are non-traditional students as well! Although school is very busy, I have fortunately had time to see some of my postbac friends this year. I know that the friends I made at Bennington are friends for life, and I am so excited to see where their careers take them. They are truly an amazing group of people and will make admirable doctors (and veterinarians… Carl!)."