Bard College at Simon's Rock: the Early College

Bringing Your Passions Into Focus

Our academic programs are demanding, exciting, and designed to support your growth—because the journey matters as much as the destination.

At Simon’s Rock, excitement about learning is right where it belongs — at the center of everything.

During and after class, you’ll get swept up in discussions with peers who share your commitment to intellectual curiosity. Along the way, you’ll develop an individualized plan of study that combines course work in your favorite subjects, world-expanding opportunities both on and off-campus, and, ultimately, the completion of your own senior thesis.

Rockers choose early college because they want to be challenged. For the first time, you’ll have ownership over your educational development, as we give you the support to imagine, design, and plan your individual path.

A Foundation for Learning About Anything

Simon's Rock students in a group outside the library
78% of Simon’s Rock students go on to get PhDs, one of the highest rates in the country.

Get ready to embark on a broad range of profound intellectual experiences. We don’t sequester knowledge within specialties at Simon’s Rock. Instead, we explore connections among diverse areas of study. Through intensive reading, writing, and reflection, you’ll hone your critical thinking skills. Through laboratory, studio and field experiences, you’ll put those skills into practice. Your education won’t focus on getting the right answers. It’ll teach you to ask the right questions, synthesize ideas, and solve problems — skills you’ll use the rest of your life. It’ll support your development as an individual thinker and creator who graduates ready to make a difference.

…The jobs that will exist 20 years from now — they haven’t been invented yet. How do you prepare people for jobs that don’t exist? And the answer is, you teach them to learn for themselves for the rest of their lives. You teach them to think for themselves, and that’s what we try and do…

— Bernard Rogers,
Emeritus Faculty in Literature

Explore Subjects You Love

With over 35 majors, dozens of special programs, study abroad opportunities, internships, and partnerships, studying at Simon’s Rock increases your options and opportunities both in and after school.

Whether you’re studying a new subject or diving into your specialty, your studies at Simon’s Rock will bring you face-to-face with big concepts, essential texts, deep and high-spirited discussion, advanced research, and contemporary scholarship.

Educators Who Appreciate You

Simon's Rock student and faculty member converse
With an 8:1 The faculty-student ratio, you’ll work closely with professors in small classes, one-on-one advising, and special projects.

The faculty at Simon’s Rock are a lot like you — deeply curious, constantly questioning assumptions, and passionately dedicated to their interests. They facilitate small, intense, exhilarating classes with lots of individual attention, where you’ll be expected to read texts and approach assignments actively, independently, and creatively.

You’ll discover rather quickly that your instructors are active scholars and practitioners in their fields of study, who also happen to be amazing advisors, collaborators, counselors, nurturers, and mentors. As your ideas collide, combine, and feed off one another, you’ll come to think of them — and they’ll come to think of you — as especially bright and interesting colleagues.

The professors here care so much about what we’re learning, and they care about our well-being too. And they’re so willing to do whatever it takes to make sure you succeed.

— Bethany Geiger, ’10

We’ve Got Your Back, Always

Simon's Rock faculty assists student in classroom

It takes courage to leave high school early to begin college. But when you do, it won’t be on your own. From residence hall to classroom, we have dedicated staff and systems in place to help you adjust to your new surroundings.

Right away, you’ll start meeting with an academic advisor who’ll help you tackle challenges in and out of the classroom. Peer tutors, notoriously helpful librarians, and other special staff round out the rest of a tremendous community that wants you to succeed.

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