F R E Q U E N T L Y A S K E D Q U E S T I O N S
Is it a college?
Thoreau College is an initiative to create to a 4 year, transformative liberal arts college in Viroqua, WI. As steps towards becoming a 4 year college, we have run a series of programs including the Prelude, the Founding Fellows, and currently Growing Seasons at Thoreau College.
When does it start?
Growing Seasons runs each year from late March to mid-December, and with Growing Seasons I running March 17th to December 13th, 2019.
Is it accredited?
Thoreau College is not formally accredited, although we are currently pursuing becoming formally accredited in the future. Completion of a Thoreau College program currently does not result in transferable credits or any other formal qualification or certification.
Can you accept students from other countries?
Thoreau College can accept students from other countries, but cannot grant student visas. We can assist prospective students with researching the possibility of getting a volunteer or tourist visa so they can participate in our programs.
How much does it cost?
Thoreau College programs use a pledge process to determine the fee for tuition and living expenses for each individual participant. Once students are accepted, they fill out a financial form to give us an idea of their financial situation. Then they work with a member of our Finance Circle to learn about the costs of running the program and determine what they can contribute.
Why the weird schedule?
Growing Seasons at Thoreau College follows the schedule of the actual growing season, running from spring through fall rather than following the traditional academic calendar. The curriculum of Growing Seasons is integrated into the seasonal changes of the year, and participants have the opportunity to observe and participate in the yearly rhythm of the growing season from the first buds of spring through the harvest. Students also contribute to the work force of our rural community by working on farms and growing their own food, becoming deeply rooted in the culture and landscape of Viroqua, WI.
Where will I live?
For the majority of the program participants live in shared houses in the town of Viroqua. Students self-govern their households, sharing chores and meals and are mentored on community living. For six weeks each summer students live at Bear Creek Farm, a 30 minute drive from Viroqua, which is also the campus of the Driftless Folk School.