As a student at Connecticut College, you will have the benefit of Connections, a bold new venture that will prepare you for success in an increasingly complex world. Today, information comes at us from all directions at a rapid pace. You will need the right mix of skills and experience to use this information effectively in your life and work. Connections helps make this happen.
Connections encourages you to explore the linkages between different ways of thinking and different languages; between your chosen major and your elective course of study; between your academic classwork and your work in the world; between your life on campus and your life after Conn.
You will benefit from a stronger first-year experience with enhanced advising; a sophomore year where you will choose a major and begin an Integrative Pathway; a junior year that expands your inquiry outward to include research, internships and Global/Local engagement; and a senior year that ties all of your study together in a reflective project.
You won't go it alone
Your college experience begins before you arrive on campus, when you select your first-year seminar. These courses explore a huge range of topics, from "Toxins and the Nervous System" to "Work in America." Whatever you choose, your first-year seminar will give you a forum to engage with other students and the broader community; to explore issues of equity and inclusion; and to begin thinking openly and creatively about your time in college and your life after graduation.
This is where you will meet your team of advisers—including your seminar professor, a professional staff adviser, and one or more student advisers—who will mentor and support you as you make the most of your Conn experience. This team will help you expand your intellectual possibilities and connect you to people and activities that match your personal and career goals.
Charting a pathway
In the fall of your sophomore year, you will select an Integrative Pathway: a focus for your studies that will tie your learning together throughout your time at Conn, across subject areas.
The following Pathways have already been approved:
- Eye of the Mind: Interrogating the Liberal Arts
- Global Capitalism
- Peace and Conflict
- Public Health
- Social Justice and Sustainability
Additional Pathways that are currently being developed include Entrepreneurship, City Schools, Identity, Global New London and Bodies/Embodiment.
The entry point to a Pathway is the Thematic Inquiry. This course will introduce you to the theme of your Pathway, and help you to develop your own animating question that is particularly meaningful to you. For example, if you were interested in the arts and selected the Public Health Pathway, you might ask, "In what ways can community performing arts organizations address health disparities?"
Your animating question provides focus for your work, culminating in the fall semester of your senior year, when you will present your findings at an All-College Symposium.
Along the way, you will complete Pathway-affiliated courses that engage you in different Modes of Inquiry (MOI), or ways of thinking. These modes include Creative Expression, Critical Interpretation and Analysis, Quantitative and Formal Reasoning, Scientific Inquiry and Analysis, and Social and Historical Inquiry.
Engaging locally and globally
You will have the advantage of Conn's strength in global education, so that as you engage in global communities—both domestically and internationally—you can empathize, communicate and collaborate with others from diverse cultures in their own languages. Language and culture study will be infused throughout all dimensions of your Conn experience: in coursework, internships, study-away programs, community-based learning and research projects, to name a few.
To prepare you to fully engage in communities where English is not the primary language, you will take two semesters of study in a single language so you can pursue advanced study and projects during your junior and senior years, and work with your advisers to apply your language study to activities that reach beyond the classroom.
As a student entering in Fall 2016 or later, you will be among the first to fully experience Conn's new Connections program. Many aspects of Connections, including team advising, are already underway. With Connections, the strength of Conn's liberal arts curriculum will continue to grow.