Yestermorrow Design Build School Summer Courses

Submitted by Yestermorrow Design Build School
2007-04-02 11:58:27

Yestermorrow Design/Build School, in Warren, Vermont, inspires people to create a better, more sustainable world by providing hands-on education that integrates design and craft as a creative, interactive process.
Our curriculum is based on three scales of the design/build process: Whole Buildings and Communities (large scale), Materials, Methods and Building Systems (medium scale), and Architectural Craft and Woodworking (small scale).
Please see a list of courses at

Sample Courses:
Green Home Design June 9-10, 2007
This weekend workshop will help you make the leap from standard market-driven construction to a quality "green" home. We will discuss site design, building envelope design, climatic design, durable construction detailing, energy-efficiency, passive and active solar strategies, resource efficient material choices, and indoor air quality. This course is for students beginning the design process for a new home or addition, as well as professionals who wish to increase their knowledge of green construction and design. All Levels. 14 AIA Learning Units. Certificate in Sustainable Building and Design.

MicroHydro: Home Scale Water Power Systems June 3-8, 2007
Microhydro power was once the world's prominent source of mechanical power for manufacturing. While renewable energy sources such as wind and solar are being scaled up from residential to electric utility size, hydro power is being scaled down to residential size. The result is that increasing numbers of small hydro systems are being installed at homes and remote sites across North America . This microhydro course will deal with all aspects of assessing, designing and implementing battery-based water powered systems. We will work with the actual equipment and install a system at or near the site of the school. All Levels. Certificate in Sustainable Building and Design

Frequently Asked Questions

How far in advance should I register for a course?
For most classes, we recommend registering 2-3 months in advance; although we will continue to accept registrations on a space-available basis until a class reaches its capacity (most classes have a maximum between 6 and 15 students). If the class you hope to take is full, we are happy to place you on a waiting list in case there is a cancellation. When there is space available, we will accept registrations up until the day before the class begins.

What is the tuition payment schedule, and what if I need to cancel from the class?
To hold your space in a class, we ask for a non-refundable deposit when you register ($100 for 2-3 day workshops; $300 for 5-6 day courses; and $500 for two-week courses). The balance is due no later than two weeks prior to the course start date. You can earn discounts by paying in full at least 30 or 60 days in advance of the course start date.
If you need to cancel from the course, we will reimburse all payments minus the deposit if you cancel at least two weeks prior to the course start date. Your deposit will be held as a credit for up to one year to be utilized toward another Yestermorrow course. If you cancel less than two weeks before the start of the course, you will lose your non-refundable deposit, and we will hold the rest of your payments as a credit to be utilized toward another Yestermorrow course for up to one year.

When should I arrive?
Unless otherwise noted, one-, two-, and three-day workshops begin at 9am. One and two-week courses begin at 5pm on Sunday. Please arrive at least 15 minutes early to allow time for check-in. If you will be staying in on-campus lodging, please allow enough time to get settled in. If you are going to be late, please call to let us know!
If you are staying on campus, and will be arriving outside of our normal office hours (8:30am to 5pm), please give us a call in advance. We are happy to leave a dorm room key and/or a campus map in an envelope outside our front door for late arrivals.

What should I bring?
If you are taking a shop class or hands-on building course, please bring appropriate carpentry or shop tools and safety equipment (eye and ear protection) if you have them. If you do not have them, or it is inconvenient to bring them, we will gladly supply you with whatever you need. It is not necessary to go out and purchase tools before a class. In fact, it is better to try out the tools we have to allow you to make more informed purchasing decisions. Sturdy work or hiking boots are recommended.
If you are taking a design class, please bring personal project information, site plans, articles, drawings, photos, clippings, or whatever else will assist you with the design process.
If you are staying in one of our cabins or in our camping area, please bring a sleeping bag, pillow, towel, and flashlight or battery-powered lantern. We provide linens and towels for students staying in dormitory rooms.
In general, a notebook, camera, raingear and comfortable clothing are recommended.

What are the hours of the class?
Weekend and three-day classes generally run from 9am-5pm (sometimes until 5:30pm). Weeklong and two-week classes often have evening sessions as well. Two-week classes typically continue through the weekend, with some free time in the schedule as well.

How do meals work?
In the winter we offer lunches available from a local café, delivered daily to the school. There are also numerous restaurants (from pizza to 5-star) in the immediate vicinity. As of April 29, 2007 we will be offering 3 meals a day, 7 days a week cooked and served right here on campus as part of our new Meal Program.

What is the surrounding area like?
We are located in the Mad River Valley , in the geographic center of Vermont . We are about midway (2-3 miles) between two small villages, Warren and Waitsfield. Waitsfield is the Valley's commercial center, with grocery, natural food, hardware stores, restaurants, etc. Though rural, the area is a resort center with Sugarbush and Mad River Glen ski areas nearby, so there are quite a few amenities.

Do I need a car?
Not necessarily, though it certainly simplifies things. Getting to and from the airport, or bus and train stations will require taxi service, but if you are staying on campus, you can be fairly self-sufficient once you are here. We have loaner bikes and are willing to give lifts to the grocery store, if need be. There is free bus service throughout the Mad River Valley during the winter months.

How do I get to Yestermorrow without a car?
The nearest airport is Burlington International (BTV) which is about 50 minutes away, at which you can access all major car rental companies. We can help you arrange for cab service between the airport and Yestermorrow (approximately $90 one way). There is Amtrak and bus service to Montpelier and Waterbury (both approx. 20-30 minutes from Yestermorrow), and cab service can also be arranged (approx. $50 one way).

Can I Bring My Dog?
No dogs are allowed in the dorm area. We are amenable to mellow, well-behaved, quiet dogs in the tenting area, or here for the day. Dogs that need a lot of attention, who bark, or have aggressive tendencies should be left at home. There are two local kennels and a doggie daycare nearby.

For whom are we building the class project?
Productive classes are reliant on worthwhile projects. For classes with a group project component, our priority is for the project to optimize the learning potential for the students and meet the teaching goals of the instructors. Our order of preference in looking for quality class project clients is:
Yestermorrow school (dependent upon campus needs)
Community groups, non-profits and local public and private schools
Private individuals.
Depending on the class, some project work may take place at the client's site, and we will provide transportation to and from the site.

Why does my class have a materials fee?
A materials fee, additional to class tuition, is utilized to pay for materials used by individual students in classes that have a personal project component. In essence, the fee enables students to purchase those materials, and bring them home with them after the class.

Will I be able to communicate with the outside world?
Cell phone reception is limited here in the Mad River Valley . We suggest that you bring a phone card for long-distance calling, and we have two phone lines dedicated for student use in the dorm area. We have DSL internet capabilities and three dedicated computers for student use. We also have wireless internet available if you would like to bring your own laptop.

How many people share a dorm room or cabin?
We generally put two people together in our dorm rooms or cabins. In extremely busy situations, we may put a third. We keep genders separate, unless you are attending with your spouse or partner.

Can my family (or friend) stay with me in the dorm/cabin even if they are not taking a class?
Absolutely, although they will need to pay the nightly lodging rate.

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