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Our son was wavering between Bard, Vassar and the Art Institute of Boston and our visit clinched the decision for him. What impressed me most was the Q&A session with President Botstein. In the course of answering simple and practical questions from family members, he elucidated a philosophy of encouragement, challenge, personal responsibility, and student confidence-boosting that lies at the heart of what I believe the transition to higher education should be about.
Beginning with her First-Year Seminar professor, my daughter has found extraordinary mentors at Bard—teachers and advisers who challenge and support her in her writing, her thinking, and her artwork.
My daughter is graduating in May. Of all of the brilliant offerings of Bard College, the faculty far outshines everything else.
My daughter made the leap easily into the Bard environment—from her classes, to a knitting club, to the Black Student Organization, a promotion to building manager at the student center, participation in Building Up Hudson (a student mentoring program), and to interviewing to be a peer counselor in a residence hall. I am confident she is in the right place.
Bard is well situated in a rural area, right on the Hudson River. It is far enough from New York City so it is not a daily distraction but close enough (90 miles) so the students can take the train in to the City.
I was reminded today of what I like most about Bard College—and that is the relationships my son has formed, both with his fellow students and with his professors—passionate creative people dedicated to learning and exploring because it's what gives them joy.
Skype, FaceTime, and phone conversations consist of excited stories from our son as he immerses himself in his passions. The books he read on his own in high school on critical race theory are being discussed at length in class, the Dine/Navajo creation stories he was told growing up he finds being expressed in similar Latin cultures in his Latin American class, and he's now taking trips to New York City to visit museums and art galleries he had previously only read about. His first year at Bard has been a great year of discovery and he is adding his New Mexico culture and perspective to his new environment.
—Mrs. Laurie and Dr. Kevin Goodluck
When my daughter, class of 2014, was a freshman she told me that when she walked around the campus she felt that she was living in a painting.
I felt that the Language and Thinking program was tremendously helpful in strengthening my son's writing skills as a freshman, and inspiring his interest even more in reading.
My daughter's educational experience at Bard has been exciting and challenging. More importantly for me, the sense of community that she feels on campus has enriched her experience.
I’m really going to miss Bard when my daughter graduates next month. It has completely changed her life, and I feel a deep-seated fondness for this school. It’s something that's difficult to put my finger on, but there is a striking charisma and charm about it that I’ve never found at any other school, including my own alma mater.
Bard College is one of the strongest undergraduate programs in the country, providing more genuinely intellectual stimulation and more service than any college I know. Bard is fun—but it is fun if you like using your imagination, talk to professors, and have thoughtful conversations with friends. Bard is one of the last colleges where students stay up late talking about books that they have read.
Assistant Head of School for Academic Affairs
Emma Willard School