Vermont High School Seminars

Choose Your Seminar

Choose a seminar from a wide variety of fascinating topics. Begin with classroom discussions that frame your seminar concepts and identify key issues. Take the learning beyond the classroom with site visits, meetings with local experts, and field trips. Castleton University is an ideal environment to take learning into your own hands, consider your college major, and learn from inspiring, expert instructors.

Architecture, Design, & Sustainability

Design expresses ideas in spatial, material, and cultural terms, drawing inspiration from diverse sources—a functional need, the structure of a leaf, a philosophical text. From architecture and urban planning to user-centric technologies, design can also be structured with sustainability in mind, forming interconnected systems that benefit both communities and the planet. In this seminar, explore how we interact with space through hands-on exercises paired with critique sessions, Read more

Business & Entrepreneurship

What makes a business succeed in today’s market and what are the steps between identifying a need and opening your doors? In recent years, larger-than-life characters like Steve Jobs, Oprah Winfrey, Mark Zuckerberg, and Elon Musk have dominated headlines and raised questions about leadership, charisma, and risk-taking, all while cornering their markets. This hands-on course begins by examining the economic players and the playing field where firms operate, with discussions of Read more

Creative Writing

Whether you want to write your first novel or create a poem that captures a specific emotion or experience, this dynamic workshop-style course is a step toward finding your voice and pushing your boundaries as a creative writer. Through personalized exercises led by published authors, develop skills in the genre of your choosing while exploring important craft challenges such as dialogue, imagery, narrative structure, word choice, theme, and storytelling technique. Read more

Farm to Table

From the farms, fields, and gardens of Vermont to the dinner table, culinary traditions and local food are the beating heart of Vermont’s identity. Dive into Vermont’s thriving food and farm culture, meeting with inspiring individuals and entrepreneurs who have dedicated their lives to the land. Expand your understanding of sustainable food systems and how they differ from conventional large-scale agriculture as you sow, harvest, cook, and savor your way through Vermont’s food scene. Read more

Fashion Design

Trace the history of the multi-billion dollar global fashion industry as we know it today. Gain an understanding of the environmental and consumer trade-offs of the fashion industry, one of the largest polluters in the world, and the movement toward sustainable production. Engage in discussions with designers, retailers, and textile manufacturers working in the U.S. and abroad. Participate in hands-on workshops to learn many of the skills and techniques needed to design and create your own ready-to-wear Read more

Film Production & Studies

From major theater releases and streaming platforms to YouTube and TikTok, more video is being produced and consumed than ever before. Dive into the craft of video production and filmmaking in this production-oriented seminar to explore the medium’s potential for creative expression and visceral impact. Practice storyboard development, camera operation, sound recording, lighting, direction, and non-linear editing. Just as importantly, learn how to work as a team, translating ideas to visual Read more

Forensic Science

From CSI to Dexter, Sherlock Holmes to Bones, forensic science is portrayed in popular culture as a nearly magical tool in modern-day crime investigations. But is a drop of blood or a single strand of hair really the same as a smoking gun? In this seminar, look critically at case studies from around the world and learn how forensic evidence can be used in securing criminal convictions. In the lab, learn the science behind crime-solving tools such as blood spatter analysis, fingerprinting, Read more

Marketing & Communications

Today’s marketer has access to digital tools and data that their predecessors could only have dreamed of. Still, the fundamental rules of marketing apply. Begin with an introduction to the marketing “funnel” and the “journey” that a customer goes on before purchasing a product, from becoming aware of the company to considering a purchase, all the way through to becoming a loyal customer. Through role-plays, hands-on projects, and case studies, dive deep into the strategies and tenets of Read more

Photography

Designed for photographers of all skill levels, this seminar teaches the basics of digital photography and composition before diving into more advanced shooting techniques and editing instruction. Whether your passion is portrait, landscape, adventure, or storytelling, build your confidence and nurture your creativity through one-on-one workshops with your instructor and group critiques. In the classroom, learn aesthetic principles and review the work of a variety of photographers, Read more

Political Science

American politics has always been messy and complex, but our contemporary moment seems to be particularly so. What are the effects of polarization on our democractic process? How do Americans think about politics, and what role does identity play in political and electoral choices? How do our political institutions respond to the demands of increasingly diverse constituencies, with divergent views on issues like immigration, health care, climate change, social justice and gun rights? Read more

Pre-Med & Biomedical Ethics

If you think a future in health professions might be your calling, this introductory, lab-based course covers key concepts and principles in biology and examines broader ethical questions about practicing medicine. From the molecular level, learning how genes and proteins function in cells, to population-level discussions about mutations, diseases, and evolution, explore the interconnections of living systems and the role medical science plays in unraveling the mysteries of life. Read more

Psychology

The principles of psychology permeate our lives every day, often in ways we don’t realize. How do we decide what to do? How much of who you are is determined by your family, your gender identity, or your friends? Understanding human cognition, emotions, and behavior allows psychologists to better predict how we may behave in specific situations, why we think the way we do, and how emotions impact our interactions with our world. Begin by learning the basic goals of psychology, Read more

Sports Management

The ever-growing sports industry provides it all: entertainment for thousands, economic benefits, the thrill of competition, healing opportunities for citizens and communities in crisis, and marketing opportunities that stimulate economies near and far, to name just a few. In this seminar, explore the varied opportunities that sports management provides—including team and athlete management, sports marketing, or sponsorship management—while developing an understanding Read more

Social Activism & Leadership

From climate change to income inequality, food security to systemic racism, the world needs young people to be leaders. This seminar is designed for students who are passionate about advocating for a cause, who want to better their community, and seek to improve their leadership skills. Focus on turning advocacy into action as you work on developing, funding, and implementing solutions to social, cultural, or environmental issues. Whether your passion is elephant conservation Read more

Studio Art

Develop and refine your artistic vision as you explore studio art through a variety of materials, media, and perspectives. This seminar, taught by a working artist, is for students who are well-practiced in the field, as well as those who are new to creating art. Work in drawing, painting, sculpture, and mixed and new media as you expand existing techniques, establish new skills, and take your work in new directions. In both studio- and plein air-based lessons, create pieces based Read more

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Middle School Seminars

View Pre-College Vermont seminars for middle school students.

High School Seminars

Program Overview

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Vermont FAQ

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