Graduate Admissions Blog

Discover Bank Street Day!

A big thank you to those who organized last week’s “Discover Bank Street Day.” I was very happy to be on the panel for discussion to talk about my experiences here at Bank Street, and share further afterwards in the lobby.

In case you missed it, the day began with welcoming remarks from Amy Greenstein and Dean Virginia Roach, complete with data in a powerpoint showing strong hiring and satisfaction rates among Bank Street graduates compared with similar programs in the city. Then, a panel consisting of 4 students (myself, Samantha Bedol, Shavon Frazier, and Katie Shea) fielded both pre-prepared and on the spot questions, moderated by Associate Director of Graduate Admissions Jesse Nguyen.

It seemed that many accepted students were curious about what made Bank Street different from their other options. This is certainly a relevant question when making a commitment to the school. While each panelist answered with their own variations, one thing we all seemed to agree on was the small class size, availabilty of professors, relevance and scaffolding of assignments, and an overall sense of purpose which permeates through Bank Street’s coursework and experiences.

Next the accepted students were invited to the 4th floor classrooms where a few professors gave demonstration courses. I sat in with the engaging Sean O’Shea and his Developmental Variations course lesson. Even on a Saturday morning, among young professionals with much on their minds, Sean steered us to a thoughtful and discussion-filled session about the way we approach working with people with special needs. Getting to the root of stigma and assumption making, the mini lesson was an excellent taste of a Bank Street graduate class, relying on stories of personal experience combined with the terminology and theory of a progressive approach to education.

Afterwards, there were some closing remarks from the admissions department, and the prospective students met with professors and ambassadors from the programs they were interested in. It seemed that a major concern was about timing – how long the degree typically takes and how many credits the program is. These are valid concerns, but also vary greatly from person to person. Some people are able to handle 8 credits over 3 classes in a semester, and still process and appreciate the information, while others may get a much better experience taking 5 credits over 2 courses. I’d suggest meeting with your advisor to talk about work habits, workloads, and personal style before registering.

In all, it was a great day for those involved, and again a thank you to the organizers and other panelists. It was a pleasure to meet you all and be reminded of the high caliber of students Bank Street offers to the field of education.