Special Programs in Education

Field Work

Vassar Education Collaboration: The Vassar Education Collaboration (VEC) was established in 2003 by Education faculty and students. Located in Vassar’s newly renovated historic observatory, the office oversees the education outreach programs of the College, and serves as a coordinating resource for faculty, students, and administrators who are interested in working in local and regional schools. VEC programs include Vassar After School Tutoring (VAST), Vassar English Language Learners Outreach Program (VELLOP), and Exploring College.

Semester Away Program

Clifden, Ireland: This program offers Vassar students an opportunity to immerse themselves in Irish culture and get an insider’s view of the Irish school system. Students interested in teacher certification, the theoretical study of education, or the study of cross-cultural education are assigned as interns in primary and secondary schools in Clifden. They also enroll in a tutorial at University College, Galway, in an area of interest such as history, English, psychology, history of art, physical science, geography, or another subject taught in the university. Those interested in applying should consult with their advisor and the Department of Education before submitting a formal application to the Office of International Programs.


Mindich Fellows: Over winter break, Vassar students, together with students from other liberal arts colleges, assist public school teachers in New York City or Boston for two or three weeks. The program aims to open doors for students interested in education, as well as for the younger students with whom they work during the month.

Mindich Fellows will be assigned to partner schools, where they will spend weekdays working in classrooms with mentor teachers. No previous teaching experience is required. Fellows will spend the majority of their time assisting an experienced classroom teacher. The specific responsibilities will vary, depending on the needs of the classroom teacher. These might include: tutoring individual students, working with small groups of students, teaching a part of the class, commenting on student papers, leading class discussions, preparing materials for the teacher, attending a faculty meeting, observing different teachers in the school, and attending school events. In addition to assisting teachers, the Urban Education Fellows participate in educational seminars and side trips during the January program.

Fellows will be provided with a modest advance for expenses and are eligible to receive field work credit for the experience. Contact the Education Department for more details; applications are due in October.

Graduate Fellowship in Education Program—The Dean’s Program

The Graduate Fellowship in Education Program makes it possible for selected students who have graduated from Vassar to complete their teacher certification program. Candidates should have completed all of the certification requirements, except for Education 301 and student teaching. In return for this opportunity, the graduate fellows will work with the department in a variety of activities: attendance at various state education meetings, meeting with prospective students interested in education to discuss both the profession and the education program at Vassar, and promoting the teaching profession in the community. Applications for this program are due during the first week of December.