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The Vermont Woodworking School Immersion Program is a full-time furniture design and woodworking education program.

Immerse yourself in the challenging pursuit of woodworking with the support of skilled craftspeople and a creative community of woodworkers.

Take the leap and start during our spring, summer, or fall semesters.

Immersion Program

Spring

Dates:

January - December

 

Tuition:

9-week Partial semester - $7,200

Full semester - $9,100

VWS housing - on or off campus:

9-week Partial semester - $2,500

Full semester - $3,400

Summer
Dates:

June 3rd--August 9th

 

Tuition:

Full semester - $7,200

VWS housing - on or off campus:

10-week entire semester - $2,500

Fall
Dates:

August 26th--December 20th

Tuition:

9-week Partial semester - $7,200

15-week Full semester - $9,100

VWS housing - on or off campus:

9-week Partial semester -

15-week full semester - $3,400

We accept new students for our Spring, Summer, and Fall semesters throughout the year. No woodworking experience is necessary to apply. We're looking for hard-working, creative, and dedicated people who are excited about starting a career in woodworking. Students may enroll for a minimum of 9-weeks and can stay for up to two and a half academic years.

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Incoming students may choose to start with a 9-week partial semester and enroll in just Foundations 1. This option is only available for first-semester students during the spring or fall semesters. If they wish, these students may choose to continue into Design 1 and remain for the full 15 weeks after arriving at school.

Curriculum

In the first semester, students learn the foundations of woodworking and furniture-making through building a Shaker-style hall table. This includes shop, machine and tool safety; sharpening; proper use of hand-tools and equipment; basics of design, joinery, furniture assembly and turning on the lathe. In addition, students in their first semester participate in a design class where they design and build a small table.

In the second semester, students build on the foundational skills learned in semester one. Students learn intermediate skills related to wood bending; building forms and jigs; intermediate joinery and turning; and can start to explore electives such as 3D modeling in Fusion 360, hand tool making, or furniture elements. Students put these skills to use in designing and building a wall-mounted cabinet with at least one fitted drawer and one hinged door.

In the third semester, students gain a deep understanding of casework pieces. All students complete a chest of drawers using web-frame construction and dovetail drawers.

In the fourth semester, students complete a chair design project. Students are challenged to build a chair that is aesthetically pleasing from all sides, constructed without arms, and incorporates complex angle joinery. Students learn how to create a drop-in upholstered seat and woven seats. 

We also have an optional fifth semester, where students can complete a capstone project. This project can be a fulfilling, culminating experience for those students who choose to stay for a final semester. 

 

Starting in the second semester, students may take elective courses that teach a variety of specialized skills including marquetry & parquetry, tool-making, advanced turning, and finishing, along with courses that focus on smaller items, such as lamps or mirrors.

VWS Barn

Facility

Vermont Woodworking School is located in a renovated three-story dairy barn from the 1800s. Now transformed into a modern woodworking facility, the barn houses three machine shops, eight lathes, a sanding room, a finishing room, almost 40 benches, a 12-seat computer lab, photo studio, gallery, offices, and a large common area. If you choose to live on campus, we have a farmhouse and two silos that contain fourteen single-occupancy rooms.

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Tools & Materials

Each semester, students are loaned a personal toolkit. In addition, students have access to many shared hand tools throughout the shop. Students are required to bring their own personal protective equipment and materials that cannot be shared. Students are issued a materials credit at the Treehouse Hardwoods & Millshop in South Burlington for purchasing lumber for their design projects.