Application & Aid

The Adirondack Program is structured as a living-learning community, and so seeks students who demonstrate motivation, maturity and the willingness to work and live both independently and cooperatively in a wilderness environment (with modern amenities).
  • The program currently runs during fall semesters only and is open to Hamilton sophomores, juniors, and seniors majoring in any concentration, including those of a student’s own design.
  • The program also is open to sophomores, juniors, and seniors from other participating undergraduate institutions. Those students will receive an official Hamilton College transcript upon completion of the semester.
  • It is useful, though not required, to have some background information on the Adirondack Park. Prior to attending the program, Hamilton applicants are encouraged to take ES 220, Forever Wild: The Cultural and Natural Histories of the Adirondack Park.
  • Applicants from other institutions are strongly encouraged to read Phil Terrie's Contested Terrain: A New History of Nature and People in the Adirondacks and Paul Schneider's The Adirondacks: A History of America's First Wilderness prior to attending the program.
  • There is no specific GPA requirement to qualify for the program; however, admission is competitive for the 12 spots allotted per semester. Up to two prerequisites or consent of the faculty-in-residence may be required for admission, depending on the semester. Any prerequisites will be announced a year in advance.
  • Each student must complete an application form and personal statement, as well as submit a resume and college transcripts. Students must also provide three letters of reference, at least one of which must be from a college professor. Only one may be from a peer. The third letter should come from a professor or a supervisor at work. In-person or Skype interviews may be held after initial application materials have been received.

Costs & Financial Aid

Participants will pay current Hamilton College tuition, room and board fees. The standard charge for a residence hall room on Hamilton's campus will be assessed for housing in the Adirondacks. Likewise, the standard charge for a 21-meal plan on Hamilton's campus will be assessed for board in the Adirondacks. All students will be expected to prepare their meals in a communal kitchen (on site and stocked), with dinner as the common meal and breakfast and lunch open to negotiation between individual and communal preparations.

Financial aid does apply for Hamilton students, the same as if you were studying on campus for the semester. See Understanding Your Financial Aid While You Study Off-Campus. Non-Hamilton students should contact their own Office of Financial Aid.

Contact Information

Janelle A. Schwartz, Ph.D.

General Director
Liberal arts with an impact — the Adirondack Park is an ideal environment for cultivating leadership and exceptional scholarship through experiential learning.

Mike Mortimer ’07

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