Advising Resources for Seniors

Your Academic Advisor: Until a student declares a major (no later than March 1 of their second year), their pre-major academic advisor is most often their First-Year Seminar instructor. Once a student declares a major, a faculty member within that academic unit becomes their academic advisor. The academic advisor helps students explore the curriculum to discover their interests and to fulfill general education requirements.

Your Student Support Advisor: The Student Support Advisor program supports student success by ensuring they know whom to go to when they need guidance, assistance, or just someone to talk to. Students are assigned a Student Support Advisor prior to their matriculation and remain with their advisor for the duration of their enrollment at Bates.

The General Education Program: This page provides a helpful summary of the Bates general education requirements, which includes the Major +1, 5 MOIs, and 3 Ws). For a rationale for the program please see either the college catalog or review this PDF about “Exploring the Bates Curriculum.” Students and faculty may find the advising pyramid graphic helpful as it visually depicts all of the requirements of the general education and illustrates how the 5MOIs can be understood as a foundation on which a Bates educational experience may be built.

Thesis/Capstone Support and Completion. General information on the senior thesis can be found here. Students are encouraged to talk with their major academic advisor as thesis and capstone requirements can differ among various majors. The Academic Resource Commons and the Writing Center offers thesis support throughout the academic year.

Honors Thesis Completion: The program encourages students to achieve mastery of a specific topic within the context of a major. The program gives qualified students an opportunity to conduct extensive independent study and research in their majors. Honors study proceeds throughout fall and winter semesters of the senior year under the guidance of a faculty advisor. Students who wish to be nominated to the Honors Program should consult with their major advisor by the end of their junior year.

Global Education. It is important to ensure that your credits from study away from Bates are transferred to Bates and applied to your general credit towards degree as well as to your majors, minors, and GECs, where applicable. Please go here for more information on how to apply credits to your Bates degree.

Graduate Fellowships: Prestigious fellowships for graduate study and funding for unique projects are available for ambitious Bates students and alums. Some, such as the Truman Fellowship, are applied for in the junior year. Others are applied for in the senior year or are even open to young alumnae. The rigorous academic program at Bates prepares qualified students for prominent competitive national awards such as the Fulbright, Rhodes, and Watson fellowships. These awards require nomination from the college; students are assisted toward nomination and a strong application by the Graduate Fellowships Committee. For more information, please be in touch with Dr. Robert Strong, Director of National Fellowships at

Graduate and Professional School Applications: Pre-Health, Pre-Law, and other Graduate School Resources can be found at the Center for Purposeful Work.

Purposeful Work – Community, Connection, and Life Beyond Bates: As seniors consider graduate school and professional opportunities after graduation, they should continue to expand their networks through Bates Bridge and LinkedIn, and seek support from the Center for Purposeful Work in terms of resume, cover letter, personal statement, and interview preparation. The How to Adult Series is particularly relevant to seniors given its focus on practical topics like budgeting, apartment hunting, and finding community and connection beyond Bates. We invite students to make an appointment with one of our professional advisors here via Handshake to discuss how they can make the most out of Purposeful Work resources in their final year – and even as alumni.