Systems Maintenance this Sunday, Aug 30th

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

During our regular maintenance window this Sunday, August 30th  from 6 am – 10 am we have the following activities scheduled:


  • Our Exchange email environment will receive the latest patch from Microsoft (Cumulative update 9)
    • There is no service outage planned with this maintenance, though active Outlook Web Access (webmail) sessions may be prompted to re-login


We appreciate your patience as we continuously strive to keep our systems functioning optimally.






Billy Sneed

ITS – Central Systems & Network Services

Middlebury College

New Library staff member: Mikaela Taylor

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

On September 1st, Mikaela Taylor ’15, will join the Library in Special Collections & Archives as our inaugural Postgraduate Fellow for Special Collections and Archives.

Mikaela studied Comparative Literature at Middlebury, worked as a Digital Liberal DanteDivineCommediaArts intern this summer, and studied Italian language and culture in Rome and Siena, Italy. She hails from Houston, Texas.

Mikaela will have an office in Special Collections and a nomadic presence in the Library and across the campus as she helps us increase the impact of special collections through outreach to academic departments and students, event planning, and exhibitions. Welcome Mikaela!


Image credit: Title page from the Divina Commedia by Dante Alighieri with a portrait of Dante, Venice, 1564. Special Collections & Archives, Middlebury College.

Trust Me: We All Liked President Carter Then Too But…

Categories: Midd Blogosphere
By now, most of you have likely heard of Jimmy Carter’s recent announcement that he has cancer which has spread to his liver and to his brain. Carter, who is 90 years old, is undergoing radiation and other therapy with an uncertain prognosis. However, he wryly noted in this press conference, hosted at the Carter […]

Employing Students this Academic Year

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Posting Your Position Online

Open student positions can be posted online through PeopleAdmin. For instructions on posting a job go to the SEO website and in the Supervisor Tool Box, select “Using PeopleAdmin”.

Postings will be made visible to students on September 9th. The week before classes begin and during the first two weeks of school, students that have received financial aid will have the chance to apply for posted jobs on campus. Students that have NOT received financial aid must wait to apply until October 1st. The intent is to assist students receiving work study to obtain a job that best meets their needs. (Yes, it is okay to ask a student if they receive financial aid.) If you are rehiring a student that has worked for you previously, or for research purposes, financial aid status is not relevant.

Employment Eligibility

Student employees MUST complete the federally mandated I-9 and W-4 forms in order to work. Once these forms have been completed (this only needs to be done once!) the student will receive a blue employment card indicating that they are eligible to work for the College. Blue cards, once issued, are valid until the student graduates. Students that have NOT received their blue card CANNOT work or be paid until their employment forms are completed!


  • All student employees are limited to working no more than 20 hours per week in on-campus jobs during the academic year, with the exception of full-week recesses.
  • An Electronic Personnel Action Form (“EPAF”) must be completed for all students hired to work during the academic year. Even if the student worked last year – or over the summer – an EPAF still needs to be submitted to our office.
  • Students must submit the hours that they work in the pay period in which those hours were worked.

For more information go to: Feel free to contact SEO at x5377 or with any questions!


A short run in the Mad River Valley

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

One of my favorite running areas outside of Addison County has always been the Mad River Valley, where some of my extended family lives, and has a trail network at least as varied and beautiful as that which we have in the Middlebury (as in Middlebury VT, the 11th best town in the country to live, according to Outside Magazine!) area.  One of the limitations on running in “the valley” has been my lack of knowledge of much of the trail network, but while looking online for appropriate trails, I stumbled across the existence of a guide to the trails there, available at a variety of stores.  So, on Saturday morning, while enjoying the food and sights of the Waitsfield Farmers’ market, I picked up a copy of this map at the Tempest Bookstore in Waitsfield, one of many locations where this guide can be purchased, and studied it to look for an interesting run.  As an aside, the Waitsfield Farmer’s Market is a great place to spend a little time on a warm Saturday morning – while it does have some of the most beautiful veggies in the world, as one would expect, it also has a wide variety of specialty foods, crafts, and prepared foods.  One cow decorating the booth of a butcher shop looked far happier than one would expect, given the circumstances.

Waitsfield Cow

Waitsfield Cow

I knew I would not have time for a particularly epic run, given my other commitments, and looking for an area where I could put in a decent 5 miler, I settled on a trailhead which I had previously noted, heading south from the Mt Ellen Access Road across from the Fayston Elementary School. According to my map, I would be looking for a section of the Catamount Trail which headed south until it rejoined the German Flats road 2 miles to the south.  When I got to the trailhead, I didn’t see any of the blue diamond signs indicating that I was actually on the Catamount Trail, but did see signs indicating that I was actually on a section of the Mad River Path, a pleasant but disjointed collection of trails spread throughout the valley.  So, I was in the somewhat confusing position of holding one map, which failed to acknowledge the existence of the Mad River Path, and saw trail signage which had no mention of The Catamount Trail.  Curious, to say the least!  Oh well – they both are there and are both great trails – just run and don’t worry about it.

So, I followed the trail signs out of the parking lot, crossed a footbridge across the stream, and in about a quarter of a mile, my short section of the Mad River Path crossed the section of the Catamount Trail which I had planned to run on, and I decided to turn onto the Catamount Trail.  This section of trail climbed gradually over the next mile or so, passing alternately through mature hemlock forest, and much younger hardwoods.  It seemed as if the tree varieties were hyper-sensitive to their exposure, and I suspect that the hardwoods had been more recently logged, although there were definite signs active maple sugaring operations, as well as old stone walls and remnants of barbed wire fences hinting at past use for pasturing of dairy cows, although the fields were clearly long grown in.  After a little over a mile, I came to a T in the trails, joining a trail referred to as the Sugar Road on my map, and it also looked like a long grown in road of sorts.  I came across a few rusty old buckets hanging from the limbs of hemlock trees, and I assume that they were long abandoned sugaring buckets hung up for amusement rather than any utility.  My camera’s auto exposure settings made for an eerie effect.

Rusty Bucket

Rusty Bucket

I went right on this trail, until it merged with an extended series of driveways, and met up with the German Flats road, before beginning my return. I could tell that the trail was well worn by mountain bikers as well as foot travelers, making for smooth running. Returning to the T, I chose to continue on until it met up with a road less than a half mile later. This final section of the Sugar Road trail followed some open fields which must get mowed once in a while, but appeared to be fields of wildflowers (mostly goldenrod) and high grass at my passing. When the trail emerged from the woods into an open meadow, I could see that I had emerged at the end of Marble Hill Rd, which climbs up to this point from Rt 17. Looking at these meadows from the perspective of Google Earth, I could see that they were not contiguous with the lower open fields and their associated farm house, leading me to believe that I was on an abandoned hill farm. My suspicions were further reinforced by the presence of a few ancient apple trees, one of which grew some of the more interestingly colored apples I have seen. I can’t help but wonder if these are some long- lost heirloom variety, or something more well known to apple aficionados. There was also an odd wooden structure, standing out in the field like some ancient monolith, and I could not discern its former function.

Ancient Apples

Ancient Apples

Curious Structure

Curious Structure

After enjoying the sights of this meadow, I returned to the T, and descended to my car, with a slight variation at the end down a section of trail which was clearly built for the pleasure of mountain bikers, with tight banked curves and a moderate pitch. This section of trail returned me to the Mt Ellen access road, forcing me to run a few hundred yards uphill to the parking lot where my car awaited me. All in all, this was a pleasant, not particularly difficult run of slightly less than 5 miles, with maybe 500 ft of total vertical climb and descent. I enjoyed how this run sent me through sections of forest where elements of past and present habitation and agriculture were readily seen, but I could also see the effects of wilderness slowly taking over.

Google Earth of the run

Google Earth of the run

Altitude Profile

Altitude Profile

Weekly Web Updates – August 24, 2015

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

We reached a significant milestone this week. With the upgrade of the Middlebury Course Hub and the MIIS Course Hub to Drupal 7, we are no longer running any Drupal 6 sites. We started work on the Drupal 7 migration project on October 31, 2011 on Drupal version 7.9 and finished on August 20, 2015 on Drupal version 7.39. In that time we made over 3,000 changes to the code.

We’d like to thank everyone who helped out in this effort, especially those who helped test the site upgrades and our site editors for their patience during this process.

New Features

We have upgraded both of our WordPress servers to version 4.3, which allows you to set a custom site icon, provides markdown support in the editor, adds a way to customize your menus in the theme customizer interface, and turns comments off by default for new pages.

On the MIIS Drupal site, editors can now add social media sharing icons to Basic Content nodes by checking a box in the editing interface. The same icons and service links are used on all News nodes on the site.


Tweaks and Fixes

We made many accessibility improvements to our Drupal sites this week, including:

  • The Quick Access content type now includes a submit button. Additionally, the selector for the Quick Access node on the Middlebury Office & Services page was updated so that the search will work again.
  • The Google Custom Search content type now has a proper field label for the search input.
  • In the Google Calendar content type you can list multiple calendars. If you choose not to overlay the calendars, a select box will appear above the first calendar allowing you to switch to other calendars. This select box now has an appropriate label.
  • If you set a page in Drupal to have an “Archive” a set of select boxes will appear at the bottom of the page allowing you to filter to a particular year, month, week, or day. We have updated these select boxes to have appropriate labels.
  • We have updated the four forms that let you search for Library resources from the Drupal site to have appropriate labels for their select and input elements.

Other fixes this week:

  • Profiles on the Middlebury Drupal site were not listing the office location. We have updated these so that the full mailing address will appear when viewing the full profile and the office building and number will appear when viewing a “teaser card” listing of profiles.
  • The WordPress NextGEN gallery will no longer overlap other page elements in Chrome.
  • Four forms that allow you to search Library resources were updated to use Drupal’s block system, rather than being embedded in content. This allowed us to remove the “Extended HTML” input filter that provided some editors with an extended set of allowed HTML tags, including form elements.
  • The WordPress WPML Translation Analytics and XLIFF plugins are now included in WPML Translation Management and were removed.
  • When embedding .mp3 audio files from MiddMedia, Firefox now uses the HTML5 <audio> tag for output.

Join the Friends of International Students Host Program!

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Dear Faculty and Staff-

International Student & Scholar Services invites you to become a host for an international student this fall.

• The program provides a terrific opportunity for you to meet people from around the world, and to connect with a student in an individual way.
• It’s a friendship program. Contacts between student and family are arranged on your own terms.
• To date, the Class of 2019 will include more than 70 international students, including some U.S. students who live abroad.
• In September, we also will welcome over 12 international exchange students.
• Most of the students participate in our program, so we will need many new hosts.
If you are interested in exploring the possibility of serving as a host to an international student, please let us know.

TO REGISTER: Please contact Carolyn Dahm, ISSS Administrative Coordinator, by email at or by telephone at 443-5858. (Your email reply will go directly to the ISSS office mailbox. In either your email or phone message, please provide your name, email address, and phone number.)

Please share this information with friends and family who do not work at the College.
We invite all who are interested to become a part of this wonderful program!

To learn more, please visit our website at: .

We look forward to hearing from you!