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What do you like about the D-Plan? What are the traits/goals of someone who would likely benefit from it?

A: Student smiling holding Dartmouth banner

Though I'm just a freshman, being able to schedule my own college experience has given me a lot of freedom as I look to the next four years.

A D-Plan allows you to have more flexibility within your college career. If you want to avoid Hanover winters, you can do that your sophomore and junior year! If there are certain internships or programs that are not available in the summer, you can take off any other quarter and thus have access to a wider variety of opportunities (not to mention that you would be competing against fewer people for the same number of spots). Want to do something in government and work for a candidate during election season? You can! If you are pre-med and not aiming to do a gap year, you can take spring and summer off your junior year and study for the MCAT without the additional stress of academic coursework. The possibilities are endless and the D-Plan is easily adaptable to best suit most hypothetical needs.

Dartmouth's D-Plan basically means that you have to have 3 off-terms (normally "summers") and 12 on-terms—you can even stack your three off-terms together to take a gap year in the middle of your Dartmouth education and still graduate on time. How people take advantage of this quarter-system is completely up to them and you are still able to do a traditional fall-winter-spring all four years if you so choose. In this way, more conventionally-minded along with more creative people can benefit from the D-Plan system, although I would say that the person who could make the most of it would be someone who has precise and concrete ideas for how they want to structure their time away from college. 

Does anyone want to take an off-term to go see the Aurora Borealis? 

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