Author Archives: Chelsea Colby

Community Partner Feature – Wild Roots Farm VT

Jon Turner, of Wild Roots Farm in Bristol, is coming to campus on Friday, Feb. 24 to host a workshop called Fundamentals of Design: Permaculture and Regenerative Agriculture

Friday, Feb. 24

4:30-6:30pm

Axinn 219

90% of mistakes can be prevented with an efficient design. This workshop will give you an understanding of different ways to view the landscape and how the site can influence a successful design. We will discuss permaculture principles and how to apply them to this process, while also providing case studies of the effectiveness of ecological design.

*Wild Roots Farm VT 2017 Regeneration Workshop Series*
Learn more about Wild Roots Farm VT here: https://www.facebook.com/WildRootsFarmVermont/
Cultivating Mushrooms: Substrates & Soil
March 11
Hands on
Resilient Farm Systems: Mindfulness in the Field
April 8
Designing and Building the Forest Garden
May 13- 14
Hands on
Improving Your Soil: Biologically Charged Garden Beds
June 10
Storing Carbon/ Utilizing Nutrients: Waste as a Resource
July 8
Hands on
Pollinator Habitat & Forage Strips
August 12
Pasture Management & Livestock Integration
September 9
*Public Gatherings*
Veterans Regeneration Benefit
May 26
-proceeds will go to a local project
Know Your Farmer Market Day
July 8
-sample local food and meet the farmers who helped produce it
2nd Annual Harvest Potluck and Hoedown
September 30
-food, music and lots of family

Chicago Posse 5 Community Supper – Reflection by Arturo Simental

On Sunday, January 17th, my Posse and I (first years from Chicago) participated in a community supper at the Congregational Church. After weeks of planning and some initial preparation the night before in the form of creating a music playlist, grocery shopping, and baking ten dozen brownies, our group was excited to work together serving the Middlebury Community. To make operations smoother, we divided into different roles: dishwashers, cooks, cutters, and servers. We began our day setting up the long meal tables with floral decorations and tableware. Other members of the Middlebury community, friends, and community leaders assisted us.

Our menu consisted of chicken parmesan, two types of pasta, salad, bread, clementine, and chocolate desserts. Preparing the food for 200 community members taught us how to work effectively as a team and be diligent. Knowing each other well through Posse made it quicker to work and be honest about what we needed from each other to serve everyone who expected a good meal. The biggest lesson of the community supper was acknowledging how important it is to engage with community members that aren’t students of Middlebury College. Living in a college campus often blinds us from connecting with Vermont locals and learning about their challenges and hearing their stories. We all learned how hardworking the community members are and we put to rest any preconceived notions we had of the community; we found that there is tremendous diversity in the Vermont experience. Engaging with the community gave us a new understanding of Addison County and opened our eyes to the privileges we have being in Middlebury as students and how beneficial it can be to reach out and have events that give back to community members. After cleaning up and reflecting on our experience the following week, we hope to further our community engagement with locals and demonstrate our leadership as Posse scholars!

Thanks, in part, to the Service Cluster Board Flex Fund for the generous grant to help make purchasing groceries possible, and to the Charter House Coalition and Congregational Church team for welcoming us so warmly.

CCE Mini Grant Reflection by Rebecca Duras: Letter drop at Congressman Welch’s and Senator Leahy’s offices, Burlington

On Veteran’s Day, 2016, the Middlebury chapter of Young Progressives Demanding Action (YPDA) organized a trip to the Burlington offices of Congressman Peter Welch and Senator Patrick Leahy to deliver letters calling for them to oppose the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline, which not only threatens the environment but desecrates Native American land protected by a treaty. The letter drop was planned before the election results, but the election of Donald Trump, who not only promised he will support the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline but stated that he will overturn President Obama’s executive order blocking the Keystone XL Pipeline, made the day of action even more pressing. Of all the things that could happen under a Trump administration, the damage done to the environment is one of the most powerful because we are at a turning point environmentally and if swift action is not taken now, our environment will become permanently damaged beyond repair.

After the letter drop was completed, the members of MiddYPDA attended the Burlington “Love Trumps Hate” rally  to show our support for those who are most vulnerable by Trump’s administration. The rally in Burlington’s City Hall Park was peaceful, with many speakers sharing their fears of what might come as well as their hopes for a future America that is vigilant in the face of injustice and many shared tips for helping the most vulnerable.

Buy Again Alley 1st Anniversary Specials

BUY AGAIN ALLEY, your local non-profit thrift and consignment shop, is celebrating its ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY! We are celebrating and thanking our customers with A WEEK OF ANNIVERSARY SPECIALS!

  • Tuesday 1/24: Bring a friend, get 20% off your purchase and enter your friends name for a mystery discount.
  • Wednesday 1/25: All day raffle- door prizes will be drawn every hour! Get a free paper crane with your purchase!
  • Thursday 1/26: Another day to bring a friend, get 20% off your purchase and enter your friends name for a mystery discount.
  • Friday 1/27: Show us your student ID and receive 20% off your purchase and enter a friends name to win a mystery discount.
  • Saturday 1/28: All day store-wide Sale-20% off! 1 pm – 4 pm: Get a free Henna Tattoo by Rebecca of Heartfire Henna with your purchase of $15. First come, first serve.

HIGHLIGHTED TAGS ARE NOT INCLUDED IN SALE OFFERS!

Come visit us at 1 Frog Hollow Alley in Middlebury or find us on FB under Buy Again Alley.

Hours: 11 am to 5 pm. Contact Jutta for more information @ 802-989-8934 

Apply today! Center for Community Engagement Intern position

Application deadline: Friday, December 9th

  • 8-10 hours/week paid position in the Center for Community Engagement. Level B pay, $10.32/hour
  • Seeking a candidate who will be available to work on-campus for J-Term and spring semester
  • Apply here.
  • Questions? Contact Ashley Laux, alaux@middlebury.edu.

Join a fast-paced, creative, joyful work environment and make a positive impact on-campus and in the local community through this position. We seek an intern to support Center for Community Engagement staff on a wide-range of projects including event planning, data input, program research, and logistical support. Each work shift will look slightly different based on the programming and needs of the Center for Community Engagement.

Responsibilities:

  • Provide office coverage during office hours.
  • Greet faculty, students, community partners, and other visitors to the Center for Community Engagement. Provide information about the office and our programs to visitors.
  • Pursue innovative and creative ways to help spread understanding and awareness of the Center for Community Engagement on- and off-campus.
  • Provide research assistance as needed (e.g., comparison to other campus programs, “best practices,” student service leadership, support for faculty, etc.).
  • Help to plan and organize one-time events for the Center for Community Engagement.
  • Help prepare materials-for bulletin boards, posters, articles, etc.
  • Assist with other office responsibilities as needed.

Training:

Excellent interpersonal and communication skills; ability to manage and prioritize multiple tasks; self-motivation and the ability to work independently and proactively on projects; previous experience with community service, service-learning, and/or some familiarity with community service in Addison County preferred; event planning experience helpful.

Education/Training:

  • Strong computer skills, including Word and Excel.
  • Strong communications skills, both oral and written.
  • Reliability and a strong commitment to the Center for Community Engagement’s mission.
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality.
  • Research skills.
  • Ability to prioritize and juggle several projects simultaneously.

CCE MINI GRANT REFLECTION BY Adrian Leong: Lecture by Helena Wong

This project is supported by funding from a Middlebury College Community Engagement Mini-Grant.

“From the local to the global:  Asians and Asian Americans on the side of Racial Justice, Climate Justice, and Gender Justice,” a lecture by Helena Wong

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Nov. 14, Helena Wong from Grassroots Global Justice Alliance and the World March of Women: U.S. Chapter, came up from New York City to speak at Middlebury College. The turnout was exceedingly good, with the entire Orchard room at Hillcrest filled, which means there were about sixty people who showed up. This, I would suggest, had a lot to do with Trump’s election victory on the preceding Tuesday. Many students were still grappling with the implications of this landmark election results.

Helena spoke for about an hour in total, and then took half an hour of questions afterwards. Her talk can be broken into three main parts: i)community-based organizing in NYC (with Committee Against Anti-Asian Violence, ii)global justice organizing as a U.S.-based organizer: calling out and challenging U.S. imperialism, and iii)gender equity organizing in China. I especially loved the succinct pieces of advice she gave: i)let’s fight like hell for our rights and liberties, ii)stop the blame game and start organizing, and iii)always use an intersectional analysis of climate, gender, and racial justice.

Helena’s perspectives are rarely heard on this campus: specifically, her choice to dedicate her life’s work to organizing, and the concrete ways that the work that she is involved in has challenged U.S. imperialism in COP21 and in the case of the murder of Berta Cáceres, for examples. With Trump’s ascension into presidency, my sense is that many students at Middlebury are looking for answers: what can be done? What must be done? Helena’s wealth of experience as an organizer spoke loudly and clearly to these burning questions, especially as they are asked by Asians and Asian-Americans who are not usually understood (and self-understood!) as having any connection at all to any social justice movements. Her voice is a very important one to witness, without a doubt.

For a full record of the lecture, including the Q&A section in the end, go to this link: https://vimeo.com/191839389.

 

CCE Mini Grant Reflection by Brenna Christensen: National Women’s Studies Association Conference – Decoloniality

Our Community Engagement grant went towards funding travel and accommodations expenses to attend the National Women’s Studies Association Conference on Decoloniality. Decoloniality, as defined by the NWSA, is a “worldview that denaturalizes settler colonial logics and structuring violences,” but part of our mission in attending the conference was to really engage with and contemplate the meaning and application of decoloniality. The conference was organized over the course of four days, with panels of experts in the field on decoloniality topics and several presentations from keynote speakers. Examples of panels that members of feminist action at Midd attended included “Indigenous Feminist and Postcolonial Feminist Understandings of Decoloniality and the Settler,” “Queer Lovers and Hateful Others: Regenerating Violent Times and Places,” “Global Fetishes and Legacies” and “Feminist Disruptions to the Neoliberal University.”

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I believe that this conference was and will continue to be extremely impactful in a variety of ways. Firstly, the girls who attended the conference were tremendously influenced by the both the ideas and the power of occupying such an exemplary feminist space. I can see that exposure to such groundbreaking and high-level concepts has already beginning to influence our way of thinking just by the conversations we had returning to Middlebury. My hope is that these ideas take are further dispersed around campus through more conversations and our planned public panel with the GSFS professors.

Additionally, being surrounded by hundreds of PHD-holding women and trans folks from across the globe was a truly inspiring and validating feeling for the group – especially in light of recent political events. In such a dark period for women and trans folks, it was rejuvenating to see so many others engaged in similar work and struggle around the world.

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Furthermore, we connected with many different attendees, from peers to professors, with whom we are hoping to organize and continue sustained relationships with. Through both attending the public panels and one-on-one conversations, we discovered new causes and have generated ideas for activist events we would like to stage next semester and next year. In particular, we are hoping to generate an “access map” which would capture different levels of accessibility across campus. We also are hoping to bring one of presenters to campus to talk about the prison industrial complex next semester.

All and all the conference was an incredible educational opportunity, and we are extremely grateful for our community engagement grant!