Things That Happened, Things To Do: Week of February 25

dispatch_distressed-300x160Our regular recap of goings on at the College and a look ahead to events on the horizon. As always, we hope to call your attention to items that captured ours and alert you to events that you won’t want to miss. If you have a news item that you think we’d be interested in, drop us a line at

  • A provocative question posted on Middblog last week asked, “When’s the last time you took a risk?” In the post, blogger Cody Gohl ’13 decried the propensity of the Middlebury community to play it safe. He posited that we have created a culture that awards “risklessness.” An interesting discussion has ensued.
  • Professor Jessica Holmes and her creative work with MiddCore, which teaches skills and perspectives that foster the development of leaders, were the subject of the Visionary Leader Radio Showon February 25.  The show focuses on people shaping our future.

  • Middlebury alumna Dena Simmons ’05 was among the many influential women featured in The Makers: Women Who Make America, screened at Dana Auditorium on February 26. The film documents the sweeping social revolution underway as women have gained in personal and political power over the last 50 years.
  • The last day of the shortest month is jam packed with things to do. Among them, two lunchtime offerings:  Robert Orsi, historian and scholar of Catholic studies, discusses the practice of confession and how it has contributed to the ongoing crisis of sexual abuse of children by priests in his lecture, “Bless Me, Father, For I Have Sinned.”  And the Woodin ES Colloquium hosts cultural ecologist and philosopher David Abram, who will talk about the ecology of sensory experience, and how language influences our perception of the “more-than-human” natural world.

  • The late afternoon of February 28 brings a panel discussion about how emerging technology can be used to further Middlebury’s mission to foster qualities essential for leadership in our rapidly changing global community. And, Professor of History Paul Monod discusses the mysterious identity of one of the figures in the museum’s early Renaissance panel painting The Bearded Monk in the Middlebury Triptych by the Master of the St. Ursula Legend.

  • In the evening of February 28, the conclusion of Black History Month will be marked with a screening of Black Power Mixtape, highlighting the era of the Black Panther Party. For those who want to know what they are eating, VPIRG is sponsoring a labeling law forum to generate grassroots support for a campaign to require labeling of GMO foods.

  • A lot more goes into a cup of coffee than just the beans. On Friday, March 1, Writer in Residence Julia Alvarez and Bill Eichner will talk about the lessons they have learned from establishing their sustainable coffee farm and literacy center in the Dominican Republic. The talk is part of the Center of Social Entrepreneurship Speaker Series.

  • Dinaw Mengestu, MacArthur Fellow and award-winning author, will deliver the keynote address for the Center for the Comparative Study of Race and Ethnicity Symposium, on March 1.  He will talk about race and migration and the vocabulary of migration, which reflects our prejudices, biases, and fears.

  • A fabulous weekend of sports is ahead. Among the events: the women’s hockey team hosts the NESCAC championship; men’s basketball makes its sixth consecutive NCAA tournament appearance; and men’s hockey heads to the NESCAC semifinals/finals.

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