Pre-College Summer Programs

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During the Pre-College Program at Marlboro, you will explore interdisciplinary interests, gain new perspective, and meet passionate people. Aimed at rising juniors and seniors (ages 15–18), this experience allows you to get a taste of liberal arts education and to discover what college learning is all about. College credit available.


Liberal Arts at Marlboro. 
Marlboro Pre-College students will experience a challenging college-level academic course, as well as gain exposure to other academic disciplines, co-curricular and extra-curricular activities, and residential college life. Class size is intentionally small, capped at 8–12 students, to create a learning community with room for every voice. 

College ready tool kit.
All participants will attend our College Prep Seminar. Our goal is to equip students with information and questions that will help them navigate their college search. Potential topics include: campus life, the admission process, financial aid, and the college essay.

Life in Vermont.
A full evening program will give students the option to explore Marlboro and surrounding towns. Supervised group outings may include hiking and swimming, local cheese and ice cream shops, art museums, baseball games, bonfires, or even fireworks!


  • Session A: July 1 - July 7
    • Where Do the Words Come From? (Creative Writing, Poetry, Literature)
    • Inside/Out: Imaginative Theater (Performing Arts, Theater session closed
  • Session B: July 8 - July 14 
    • Explorations in Clay (Visual Arts, Ceramics)
    • Green Mountain Ecology (Biology, Ecology) session closed
  • Session C: July 15 - July 21 
    • Awakening in the Wild (Philosophy, Religious Studies, Environmental Studies)
    • Do-It-Yourself Chemistry (Chemistry, Technology)
  • Session D: July 22 - July 28 
    • Documentary Filmmaking (Film Studies, Video, Writing) session closed
    • Playwriting (Creative Writing, Theater)

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More Information


Email or call 802-258-9231

2018 Session A: July 1 – July 7

Where Do the Words Come From?

Subjects: Creative Writing, Poetry, Literature
Instructor: Bronwen Tate
One-week course: July 1 – July 7
Possible college credits: 1 

Together we will read and write stories, poems, essays, and memoirs, then try out different sources and approaches for getting words on the page. Through reading interviews, we will learn how writers find the courage to write from their own positions of experience, interests, and expertise. As we explore different methods of writing, such as personal memory, direct observation, dream recording, and mythical and folk models we will develop a broader sense of writing techniques and discover new favorite forms of composition.

Inside/Out: Imaginative Theater

Subjects: Performing Arts, Theater
Instructor: Jean O'Hara
One-week course: July 1 – July 7
Possible college credits: 1

In this course, we will explore the role of the body in theater. We will practice listening and responding to our creative instincts, increasing our mental and physical agility by forming characters and generating stories. Using multiple theater forms such as commedia, melodrama, image theater, and mask, we will discover our improvisation skills and find inspiration in nature.

2018 Session B: July 8 – July 14

Explorations in Clay

Subjects: Visual Arts, Ceramics
Instructor: David Eichelberger
One-week course: July 8 – July 14
Possible college credits: 1 

In this course, we will explore various forming methods and techniques for using clay as an artistic medium. Through hands-on creative work, we will experiment with both tiles and wet clay, and translate drawings into ceramic images.  As a class we will work on a large mosaic mural to be shown on the Marlboro College campus, and we’ll each make our own mug to take home.


Green Mountain Ecology

Subjects: Biology, Ecology
Instructor: Jaime Tanner
One-week course: July 8 – July 14
Possible college credits: 1 

Come see the natural world through the eyes of an ecologist. We will learn how to ask and answer questions about how organisms survive and thrive as we traipse through streams, walk in the woods, climb mountains, and stroll through meadows. Using tools and methods employed by ecologists in the field, we will identify local species and explore ecological relationships. Collaboratively, we will develop hypotheses and predictions, participate in hands-on research, and present our findings.

2018 Session C: July 15 – July 21

Awakening in the Wild

Subjects: Philosophy, Religious Studies, Environmental Studies
Instructor: William Edelglass
One-week course: July 15 – July 21
Possible college credits: 1

In this course, we will study nature, literature, and philosophy through Buddhist poetry. Exploring the beautiful lakes, mountains, forests, and gardens of southern Vermont, we will practice meditation and yoga, swim and hike, and develop an introductory level understanding of Buddhist traditions by reading poetry together. We will respond to what we are learning and experiencing through writing poetry ourselves.

Do-It-Yourself Chemistry

Subjects: Chemistry, Technology
Instructors: Todd Smith
One-week course: July 15 – July 21
Possible college credits: 1

In this course, we will build our own gadgets out of tools like Lego and Arduino (a small, simple computer) to measure chemical samples. We will weave together instrument design and construction, sample collection in the campus nature reserves, and laboratory analysis. Over the week, we will discuss basic chemistry concepts, the principles of electronics, and some computer programming.

2018 Session D: July 22 – July 28

Documentary Filmmaking

Subjects: Film Studies, Video, Writing
Instructors: Brad Heck, Willow O'Feral
One-week course: July 22 – July 28
Possible college credits: 1

This course will focus on the skills and techniques of documentary filmmaking specific to the mini-doc—an increasingly popular way to artistically and effectively share stories. We will explore our ideas, plan a shoot, and work with cameras, microphones, and editing software to craft a short documentary that takes us inside a place, idea, real-life character, or social issue. Our week will be spent cultivating creativity by using our knowledge, curiosity, imagination, and collaborative spirit.


Subjects: Creative Writing, Theater
Instructor: Jay Craven
One-week course: July 22 – July 28
Possible college credits: 1

Develop your creativity and writing skills while learning how to invent an original world on stage. During this course, we will conjure fabulous multi-dimensional characters, set in motion dramatic action, and let loose with unforgettable dialogue as we each write our own ten-minute play. At the end of the week, we’ll plan a staged reading to share with other students.