Author Archives: Steven Bertolino

About Steven Bertolino

Research & Instruction Librarian

25th Annual Writing and Teaching Retreat

Joy, Steve and I attended a 3-day Writing and Teaching Retreat for faculty, organized by the CTLR and held at the Mountain Top Inn in Chittenden. We led a session called “Undergraduates as Researchers,” brainstormed with faculty in syllabus workshops, and gave individual and small-group introductions to the course hub, Moodle, and other curricular technology.

Here are just a few take-aways from the event:

  • During our session on undergraduates as researchers, several faculty members agreed that determining whether or not a source is appropriate for use in a paper is one of the most important skills for student writers to learn; it also is one of the most difficult skills to teach.
  • In a session on oral presentation skills, we learned that simply taking a deep breath as you approach a podium can help you speak more clearly.
  • When working with first-year seminar faculty, some in the CTLR like to share this advice:  “You are creating the students you want to see in your other classes.”
  • Both students and faculty won’t always ask for help, even if they might need it. “We don’t know what we don’t know,” one faculty member pointed out.
  • When planning a class or a workshop, start at the end (ask, “What do I want the students to have learned?”) and work backwards. This should help you decide which content to prioritize.

One more thing: The Mountain Top Inn is a really nice place!

A Guide to Email for the Graduating Senior

Every year, seniors graduate from this fine institution. Sooner or later, they wonder what will happen to their email, not only the many missives they’ve lovingly saved from their college years, but also any new email which may arrive through their address. Well, friends, wonder no more. This information is taken from the Helpdesk Policy page on the LIS Wiki (

Your campus accounts (email, file server, personal webpages) are deleted 6 months after graduation. You will receive email warnings about one month prior to account deletion. To ensure that you don’t lose any important data:

    File backup from server: Visit NetStorage to retrieve files from file servers and save them on your own private backup (your own computer, portable hard drive, etc.) You may export your email to various email clients. If you do not already have a program configured, you may set up an email connection by following our email configuration instructions.
    Forwarding email: you may forward your Middlebury College email account to another account of your choosing by visiting go/forward BUT THIS FORWARDING WILL CEASE TO WORK when your account is deleted after graduation.
    Lifelong email: the Alumni Office offers a lifelong email forwarding account to all Middlebury alumni. Find out more at our alumni faq page.

Technical support for computers purchased through Middlebury College ends when you graduate. In the event of technical problems after graduation, we encourage you to contact the manufacturer directly:
Dell Technical Support: or 800-234-1490 (x7269080 for Latitude; x7269077 for Optiplex)
Apple Technical Support: or 800-800-2775.

In other words, we love you, but the responsibility for taking care of your computer, files, and email content after you graduate is your own. You’re one of the grown-ups now!

Annual Classics Department Reading: The Aeneid

Each year, students and faculty in the Classics Department host a reading of a complete work from antiquity, outside on the Davis Family Library front steps. Anyone is welcome to stop by and listen!

The Latin epic about the destruction of one civilization and the founding of another, Vergil’s Aeneid recounts the wanderings of the hero Aeneas from the ruins of Troy to the shores of Italy, and describes with moving detail the wars he must fight in order to establish a line of leaders that will eventually lead to the Roman Caesars. (Thank you to Randy Ganiban for the blurb!)

The Aeneid will be read from at the following times:
Friday: 3:30 pm – 6:00 pm
Saturday: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Sunday: 10:00 am – noon (or until completed)

Baklava will be provided, and if you’d like to read (usually done in 30 minute increments), you also get a text and a nifty authentic Olympic crown* while you read!

*Crown made in present-day, not in Ancient Greece. No Olympic medals or achievement of world records included with crown.

If you’re interested in signing up ahead of time for a reading slot, please contact Giulia Scelzo or Christian Brady.

Circ Equipment weeding

Greetings, all. In this time of toil and woe, we regret to inform you that Circulation has removed some equipment from our loaner pool. While we don’t doubt there will be much wailing and gnashing of teeth over the loss of these extremely popular items, we stand firm in our conviction that these changes are necessary in this “new Norman” or whatever it’s called.

The following were laid to rest with all due process, pomp, and circumstance on the 24th of March, 2010.: Continue reading

Cookie Night!

20 minutes after starting the whole thing, it’s already over. That’s because our students, God love ’em, are like piranha when it comes to Cookie Night. Earlier this evening at least half a dozen came up to ask me when the cookies were going to be wheeled out, so I think they’ve figured out our secret plan of having cookies on the Tuesday of exams. Mike Roy, Mary Backus and myself put the sugary goodness you all graciously provided in the lobby, and then stood back (far back) from the feeding frenzy. Mike captured the spectacle on one of Circ’s Flip cams, and we thought we’d share some of the footage. Many thanks to you all for providing our students with a needed break from papers and exams, just a few moments to relax, chat with each other, and enjoy one of Nature’s most perfect foods. And while I’ve been typing this 3 students stopped at the Circ Desk just to say thank you to LIS.