Category Archives: middpoints

New Employee

DSC_0165 bwIn this post we’ll introduce you to a new member of the Middlebury College staff. Please join us as we welcome Sonja to campus!

On April 1, 2016, Sonja Burrows joined the Instructional Design team in the Office of the Associate Provost for Digital Learning, where she provides guidance and support for digital projects across the institution with particular focus on the Language Schools and Schools Abroad. As a language educator, second language acquisition scholar, and digital language-learning expert, Sonja brings to her work an on-the-ground understanding of the diverse ways in which digital projects can amplify language and cultural learning environments.

Prior to joining the Office of Digital Learning, Sonja developed curricula for summer language academies as well as digital language courses at Middlebury Interactive Languages. She also taught Spanish both at Middlebury College and the University of Oregon, where she developed a specialization in Spanish Heritage Language pedagogy. A self-described language geek and cultural scholar, Sonja has lived, worked, and taught in five countries outside of the United States. She speaks English and Spanish, some Italian and French, and aspires to learn Portuguese.

Sonja holds a Ph.D. in Romance Languages from the University of Oregon, as well as Master’s degrees in Spanish literature from the University of Oregon and in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) from the School for International Training. Her fields of expertise and scholarly research aim to bridge the disciplinary gaps between literature and linguistics, and include Spanish Heritage Language pedagogy, Spanish in the U.S., and English-Spanish bilingualism.

Mead Chapel Centenary: Then & Now

In celebration of the 100 year anniversary of the completion of Mead Chapel and Hepburn Hall, Special Collections presents a series of posts featuring interactive before-and-after imagery of these Middlebury icons.

Built with the help of a $60,000 donation from former governor Dr. John Mead to celebrate the 50th anniversary of his graduation from Middlebury in 1864, Mead Chapel was dedicated on June 18th, 1916 and marked “the completion of two years’ work and its entrance into the history of Middlebury as a meeting place for religious worship by faculty and students.”

Below is an interactive slider with images of Mead from the archives (tap or click on the bar to slide between images). The before image comes from the scrapbook of Arthur Thomas Vaughn, Class of 1917, and shows scaffolding around the spire. The after image is a 1916 postcard marking the completion of the chapel.

 

Sources:

Stameshkin, David M. 1985. The Town’s College: Middlebury College, 1800-1915. Middlebury, VT: Middlebury College Press.

Dedication of Mead Memorial Chapel.” The Middlebury Campus, June 21, 1916.

S6 Scrapbooks Box 92, Special Collections & Archives, Middlebury College.

A12 PF Mead 1916 02,  Special Collections & Archives, Middlebury College.

 

“Shall we their fond pageant see?” A Midsummer Night’s Dream May 5-8!

While our February Folio fever has passed, the Shakespeare celebration continues with the theater department’s upcoming production, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Come watch the latest show in the long legacy of Shakespeare at Middlebury with performances at 7:30pm Thursday-Saturday, May 5-7 and 2pm Sunday, May 8th in Wright Theater!

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And be sure to catch Special Collections’ archival exhibit featuring historic costume and set designs of past Middlebury Shakespeare productions! On display for a limited time in the atrium of Davis Family Library.

Middlebury's 1971 production of A Midsummer Night's Dream
Middlebury’s 1971 production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream
TheTempest1978
Original watercolor costume design by legendary Middlebury costume and set designer Capp Potter for the 1978 production of Shakespeare’s The Tempest.

MSA April Newsletter

msa

Achieving the American Dream

WEBINAR: I WANT TO BUY A HOUSE (May 10th)
Home ownership raises many uncertainties in today’s market, especially when loans are a key factor; however, our class provides the information you need to consider, whether you’re buying your first home or are back in the market to buy another. Join us to find out what to expect from your realtor! You will understand down payment requirements, learn about credit implications, and realize the importance of shopping for the best mortgage terms. Attend for tips to make educated financial decisions about home ownership and loans.

9am PDT SIGNUP    12pm PDT SIGNUP

READ: Planning for Home Repairs
Every home will eventually need repairs, and it can take a huge bite out of your income if you don’t plan accordingly. Here’s how you can prepare for the costs…
read more

WEBINAR: Live Financial Forum
Join us on May 25th for the opportunity to ask our panel of experts any financial question you might have and get the answers you need…

9am PDT SIGNUP      12pm PDT SIGNUP

REWARDS: Take Action and Win!
You get the chance to win cool prizes, when you engage in the MSA program, work with a Money Coach, and attend webinars.
learn more

MAKE FINANCES A PRIORITY. SIGN UP FOR THE NEWSLETTER TODAY.

Open House Nights at the College Observatory – Spring 2016

The Physics Department at Middlebury College will again host Open House nights at the College Observatory this spring. The Observatory, located atop McCardell Bicentennial Hall, will be open to the public for viewing the heavens on Friday evenings, April 29 and May 6, from 9:00 PM until 10:30 PM, provided the skies are mostly clear.

Jupiter will be in the evening sky on both of these dates. Also visible through our telescopes will be a number of interesting stars, star clusters, and nebulae. There is no set program for the Open House nights; the public is invited at any time between 9:00 PM and 10:30 PM.

The Observatory dome houses a 24-inch computer-controlled telescope. Additional, smaller telescopes will also be available on the roof deck for observing the night sky.

All Observatory public nights are free and open to the public, but will take place only if the sky is at least mostly clear. If the weather appears uncertain, visitors may call the Observatory at 443-2266 or visit the Observatory web site after 7:00 PM on the evening of the Open House for a status report. More information can also be found at go/observatory .

Also, please consider visiting the Observatory web site to sign up for our e-mail list with event announcements and status updates as well as to enjoy a wide variety of resources about astronomy at Middlebury and the night sky. The web site includes stunning images taken at the Observatory, information about what is currently visible in the night sky, history of the Observatory, and a summary of last year’s extensive Observatory upgrades.

The Observatory would like to acknowledge support from the Michele and David Mittelman (’76) Family Foundation for enabling substantial renovations and modernizations that represent a fundamental commitment to the long-term future of the Observatory, both for curricular and research uses, as well as for outreach. These improvements to the Observatory are helping ensure that Middlebury students, College community members, schoolchildren, and the public will continue to be able to explore the universe on the Middlebury campus under dark Vermont skies.

New Employee

In this post we’ll introduce you to a new member of the Middlebury College staff. Please join us as we welcome Ursula to campus!

Ursula Olender is the new Director of Career Advising for the Center for Careers and Internships. Ursula tells us that her life’s work has been supporting liberal arts students who are in pursuit of their goals and dreams. After completing at B.A. in psychology at Greenville College (IL) and M.Ed. in counseling at Springfield College (MA), she served as a career counselor at Champlain College, Associate Director of Career Services at Dartmouth College, and Director of Career Services at Colgate University.  Most recently, Ursula was Associate Dean of Students and Director of the Career Center at Amherst College.  Ursula also reports that she has “dreamed of working with Middlebury students for more than 20 years” and “feels blessed to have the opportunity to return to Vermont.”

Romance of the Skies: Middlebury College Observatory

In 1936, Middlebury chemistry professor John Haller spent three months grinding a 12.5 inch parabolic mirror which he donated to the College under the condition that an observatory be built on the knoll north of Pearsons Hall.  A simple frame was soon constructed and the mirror was installed in a 10-foot-long Newtonian telescope under a dome built by Guatemalan amateur astronomer A. R. Ibarguen.

Astronomy had been studied at Middlebury since the early 1800s when the Old Chapel cupola served as an observatory. Upon its completion in 1937, the new observatory hosted weekly meetings of an extra-curricular course called Romance of the Skies which combined celestial observation with lectures on the history of astronomy and mythology of the constellations.

This recently rediscovered 16mm film reel in the College archives shows unique interior and exterior shots of the observatory as well as students using sextants near Wilson Hall.

Despite these promising beginnings, by 1970 the observatory was little-used and had fallen into disrepair. Settling of the foundation made rotating the leaky dome difficult and wasps had built nests in the barrel of the telescope. But interest in astronomy was growing at Middlebury after the recent successes of NASA’s Apollo program and the building was refurbished. Professor Heller’s original mirror and other optical instruments had thankfully been safely stored away from colonizing wasps and were reinstalled.

Although Middlebury’s octagonal dome on the hill was torn down to make way for the construction of McCardell Bicentennial Hall, a new observatory was built atop that same science center and has been serving stargazing students, faculty, and the public since 2001.

Be sure to visit the Middlebury College Observatory during one of their Open House Nights this spring to get your own glimpse into the Romance of the Skies.

 

Sources

Prof. John Haller Builds Telescope and Observatory.” The Middlebury Campus, January 27, 1937.

Star Gazing.” Middlebury College News Letter, March 1, 1937.

Would You Try to Reach Jupiter with a Rig Like This?Middlebury College Newsletter, Jul 1, 1971.

 

The 25 Year Club of 2016

Congratulations to the 25 Year Club inductees!

Sandra Carletti, Italian Department

Kyoko Davis, Japanese Studies

Ronald Dragon, Dining Services

Mark Evancho, Theatre Department

Anne Klinck Randlett, Parton Center for Health and Wellness

Ricky Rheaume, Facilities Services

Monique Skowronek, Controller’s Office

Allison Stanger, Political Science Department

Julie Tumminia-Tomsuden, Information Technology Services

Stay tuned for future articles recognizing these individuals for 25 years of service to Middlebury.

Stacks & Tracks the WRMC Radio Hour celebrates National Poetry Month with guest DJ, Karin Gottshall

Join us this Wednesday, April 13, 2016 at 12p-1p when Stacks & Tracks, the Special Collections & Archives radio show, celebrates National Poetry Month with Karin Gottshall, poet, Visiting Lecturer in English and American Literatures, and director of the New England Young Writers’ Conference at Bread Loaf. It will be music to your ears, promise.

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Wednesdays 12p-1p, live at 91.1FM or live-streaming through iTunes or online.