Contribute to world-class research at Bates and beyond
Our student to faculty ratio is 10-to-1; there are 20 students in the average class; and every student works individually with a faculty mentor on their senior thesis — so not only will your professors know your name, they’ll also know where you’re coming from, where you want to go and how you might get there. Meals or coffee might be involved. Richly detailed letters of recommendation will almost certainly be involved. These are bright, accomplished, high-profile people whose priority is you.
You may find yourself intimidated by Bates’ unusually high research expectations, but you can expect strong guidance and support from your faculty mentor. And the upside of those expectations is that you’re more likely to share your research with a global audience. At Bates it’s common for students to co-author faculty articles for professional journals and to present their research at national and global conferences.
From your First-Year Seminar to your senior thesis, your faculty mentor will continually encourage you to conduct research. Whether as a student in courses and independent studies, or as a research assistant during the academic year and a research fellow over the summer, you’ll find research opportunities year-round. While most undergraduates merely dream of publication, you’ll have every chance you need to actually make it happen.
Teaching through learning
“What just keeps me coming back to teaching is how much I learn through it. Not a semester goes by when I don’t find myself learning something new, learning how to explain something a little better, understanding what I’m teaching more deeply.” — James Hughes, Thomas Sowell Professor of Economics and winner of the Kroepsch Award for Excellence in Teaching.
Support for research
We do not live in a bubble. Research, fieldwork, internships, civic engagement — we do them all, they’re academically demanding and they bring us into the world. A few examples: Our Ladd Internship Program matches Bates students with selected employers and provides a stipend — i.e., money — to support them. The Mount David Summit, our annual campus-wide student research festival, features poster sessions, panel discussions and performances.
And our Harward Center for Community Partnerships develops or supports an astounding number of initiatives that combine rigorous intellectual work and hands-on civic engagement — for instance, an internship program at major museums for Art and Visual Culture students, a politics seminar on immigration that includes firsthand research at the California/Mexico border or a community-based senior thesis about converting wood waste into fuel. It also oversees the college’s Bonner Leader Program — scholarships for students who serve and lead — and gives grants to faculty, staff and students who think of innovative ways to work with communities across the street and around the world.
Medical studies has heart
Each year, close to 90 percent of Bates students applying to medical or veterinary schools gain admission. That record of success is due in part to the work by Lee Abrahamsen, associate professor of biology and chair of the medical studies committee.