Foreign Languages at Middlebury/ Workload

Hi, I am a prospective student who is looking at Middlebury College for the Japanese major. But there are some things on my mind that makes me nervous about Middlebury. Like the things I heard about the experiences at Middlebury makes my heart feel good. But then I am nervous about a few things.

First, can someone tell me how the foreign language program is, what classes are like (like are they taught exclusively in the language), and what makes the language classes at Middlebury different, along with fluency achieved. I hope to be a translator.

My second concern is the workload. I am willing to put in the effort, but I am scared I might get a workload that I have never have before and will result in me not having a life and able to enjoy myself. I go to a college prep school with a relatively hard workload as a reference starting point.

Finally, this is relatively subjective and not too important, but at Middlebury how are the bugs, (bees and wasps)? I just wasn’t sure if the environment/setting is one such as where bees constantly come up to you and get inside houses and stuff.

Thank you in advance to whoever replies. I appreciate it.

You would be hardpressed to find schools that have a stronger language program than Midd. The foreign language program is very good and is one of the things that Midd is most recognized for, especially because of the summer Language Schools.

I can’t speak for introductory courses, but all my language courses at Midd have been taught entirely in the language. I don’t take Japanese, but you will likely be expected to attended Language Tables and Japanese House events (if you live in the Japanese House, you make a pledge to only speak Japanese in the building) for your classes so that you practice speaking Japanese outside the classroom. I wouldn’t be surprised if other colleges ran their actual classes similarly to the way Midd does-- but the big difference is how much institutional support there is outside the class. I remember talking to a friend who goes to Harvard who did an 8 week language immersion program in Beijing. She came back really excited about the langauge, but was worried that she would lose it when she got back. I said that she should just go to language tables, and she said they don’t have any, nor did they have dedicated language houses. So, that’s a big difference.

If you wish to be a translator, you will need to go to grad school either way-- you won’t be fluent enough just from undergrad. But, Middlebury also has a school in Japan, and studying abroad is ENCOURAGED. 60-70% of people study abroad, and they do their best to make sure people from every single financial background can. I studied abroad in Paris and the Middlebury program was by far the most language intensive.

If you go to a prep school, I’d be very surprised if you found yourself overwhelmed by the work at Midd. There certainly is work to do, and it’s challenging, but I don’t know anybody whose social life suffers because of it. At worst, we comiserate together whlie studying in the library, then go and get trashed.

I have never noticed anything particular about bugs, especially not bees or wasps.

@jawjuhh Thank you very much! This is perfect! :slight_smile: