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Living at Deep Springs

Living at Deep Springs

lower-ranchAll teaching and staff appointments include room and board for professors and their families, some relocation expenses, and library book-purchase funds. Long-term staff and professors also receive retirement benefits, medical insurance, financial support for professional development, and sabbatical leaves.

There are faculty and staff houses and apartments around the main circle of the upper ranch, where the library, classrooms, and boardinghouse are located. Other homes are located at the lower ranch and Henderson Station, one mile down the road. Community members are welcome to eat at the boardinghouse, which offers three meals per weekday and two each on Sunday and Saturday. Faculty and staff homes are also equipped with their own kitchens. Special dietary needs can be accommodated. The college produces nearly all of its own beef and dairy, as well as some chicken and pork. The garden turns out a cornucopia of delicious vegetables. Meals are lively social occasions, full of laughter and conversation. Occasionally, community members will conspire to cook a feast of their own.

The Student Body’s isolation policy does not apply to faculty and staff, but all community members share the benefits of the campus’s isolated location. Bishop, CA, the nearest town with a selection of stores and restaurants, is forty miles away over a mountain pass. Las Vegas and Reno airports are four and five hours distant, respectively. Los Angeles and San Francisco are about six and eight. This isolation emphasizes the stark, tranquil beauty of the landscape. Deep Springs Valley is rimmed by the Inyo-White Mountains and in view of the Sierra Nevada, two of the country’s most gorgeous mountain ranges. Opportunities to run, hike, and bike abound beyond the campus. And for the times when faculty or staff simply need to get away, there are plenty of attractions nearby: Palisade Glacier, Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest, Alabama Hills, Mono Lake, Death Valley National Park, Yosemite National Park, Devil’s Postpile National Monument, and the Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort. Numerous trailheads leading into the eastern Sierra are within 1 to 2 hours’ drive from the college.

Professors and staff often bring their children with them. As of 2017, five children under the age of 10 are in residence. Pediatricians, hospitals, childcare, schools, groceries, and department stores are all located in Bishop. The wide-open spaces, friendly community, and the absence of traffic create an environment in which children thrive. The friends and relatives of community members are welcome to visit, and the college maintains guest accommodations that are often available for short-term visitors.