Tiffany Sargent

Posts by Tiffany Sargent


Middlebury College Receives 2015 Community Engagement Reclassification by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

For several years the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching has helped frame and articulate “best practices” in higher education/community collaboration and learning. In 2006 the Foundation offered the first elective “Community Engagement” classification. That year, Middlebury’s (then) Alliance for Civic Engagement (ACE) applied for and received recognition in the inaugural round on behalf of the College. This past year, in addition to new applications, colleges and universities that were recognized in either 2006 or 2008 needed to reapply in order to be approved for reclassification. On January 7, 2015 the Carnegie Foundation, in collaboration with the New England Research Center for higher Education (NERCHE), awarded Middlebury College and others distinction through the 2015 Carnegie Community Engagement Classification.

This designation recognizes excellent work by faculty, staff, and students from multiple areas across campus (e.g., academic departments in the Arts, Humanities, Languages, Natural Sciences, Social Sciences, and other interdisciplinary programs; collaboration with Monterey and Schools Abroad; and offices/programs such as Community Engagement, Privilege & Poverty, the Center for Social Entrepreneurship, MiddCORE, Programs on Creativity and Innovation in the Liberal Arts, FoodWorks, Athletics, the Center for Careers & Internships, the Scott Center, CTLR, Orientation, JusTalks, the Commons, and more)—along with dozens of collaborating community partners. Examples of community-connected teaching, learning, and research initiatives; faculty-advised and student-led projects; volunteer efforts; internships; off-campus federal work study commitments; grant opportunities; alternative break trips; and more—demonstrated our alignment with institutional mission and priorities, overall, and the College’s continued commitment to work with and strengthen communities through partnerships, near and far.

From the Carnegie Foundation:

“Your application documented excellent alignment among campus mission, culture, leadership, resources, and practices that support dynamic and noteworthy community engagement, and it responded to the classification framework with both descriptions and examples of exemplary institutionalized practices of community engagement.  The application also documented evidence of community engagement in a coherent and compelling response to the framework’s inquiry.

“Your campus is one of 361 institutions that now hold the Community Engagement Classification.  It is heartening to see this level of commitment and activity.  Clearly, higher education is making significant strides in finding ways to engage with and contribute to important community agendas.  There is much to celebrate.”

“The importance of this elective classification is borne out by the response of so many campuses that have demonstrated their deep engagement with local, regional, national, and global communities,” said John Saltmarsh, Director of the New England Resource Center for Higher Education. “These are campuses that are improving teaching and learning, producing research that makes a difference in communities, and revitalizing their civic and academic missions.”

“This is the first time that there has been a re-classification process,” noted Amy Driscoll, Consulting Scholar for the Community Engagement Classification, “and we are seeing renewed institutional commitment, advanced curricular and assessment practices, and deeper community partnerships, all sustained through changes in campus leadership, and within the context of a devastating economic recession.”

Middlebury is one of 157 colleges and universities in the country to receive re-classification. This reclassification is valid until 2025.

“We applaud the Carnegie Foundation for recognizing the importance of setting high standards for valuable campus/community collaboration and articulating benchmarks to help guide those of us striving to pursue excellence in our work, while also drawing national attention and recognition,” comments Tiffany Nourse Sargent ’79, Director, Middlebury College Community Engagement. “One of the exciting points to underscore from this extensive self-study is the celebration that community engagement initiatives now generate from multiple points across campus, involving many more academic and co-curricular entities than was the case in 2006. While we in the Community Engagement office continue to serve as the ‘hub’ for campus community engagement initiatives, it is wonderful to see more and more positive connections campus-wide. To all who have contributed, thank you for your time, expertise, dedication, and good will as we work together to provide valuable and impactful learning experiences for our students and nurture strong and healthy communities.”

Giving Trees (Invite & Update!)

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Giving Trees Reminder

Dear Faculty and Staff,

The Giving Trees program, in collaboration with the local organization H.O.P.E (Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects), provides gifts to local children whose family cannot afford to buy presents for the holiday season. All contributions are donated to HOPE’s “Holiday Shop” which provides parents with the opportunity to select items that they feel best matches their child(ren) interests.

As the Holiday Shop’s opening date draws near, we would like to thank those who have already signed up to participate in this program and to encourage others to do so as well. HOPE has identified a need for gifts that may be more appealing to older teens, and has asked that we focus our efforts in this area. While we would  like to strive to meet this need, and encourage givers to contribute to this need if possible, we would also like to emphasize that all contributions, for all age ranges, are happily welcomed.

If you would like to participate in this program, please sign up for an “e-tree” through the Community Engagement office by visiting go/givingtrees beginning Monday, October 27th, 2014. You can sign up any time between October 27th and November 10th. We ask that you do NOT wrap gifts, so that parents can see what items are available to select from. However, you are welcome to donate wrapping paper if you wish. All gifts must be brought to Community Engagement at 118 South Main Street by Wednesday or Thursday, November 12th or 13th between 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

If you have any questions, please e-mail As always, your support and participation are greatly appreciated.

Quanteshia D. Tennyson ’14

Poverty Initiatives Coordinator

AmeriCorps VISTA Member

Community Engagement

118 South Main Street
Middlebury College|Middlebury, VT 05753



2014 Community Engagement Academic Outreach Endowment Grants to Faculty and Students

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Community Engagement announces the 2014 Academic Outreach Endowment Grant Recipients 

Faculty Projects

 Telling Stories

Tara Affolter’s project will team students from her First Year Seminar, “Telling Stories: Identity Education and Power” with students from Deirdre Kelly’s class at the Parent Child Center, “The Power of Stories” to explore notions of story and counter-story.

Lyme Disease

In conjunction with the Vermont Department of Public Health, Dr. Grass, his staff, and student researchers plan to conduct tick surveys in Addison County.

Innovation Economy in Addison County

Students in Jon Isham’s “Environmental Economics” class collaborate with local organizations on projects related to food, energy, resources, and storytelling.

Cumbancha and Vermont

Students in Damascus Kafumbe’s J-term course will investigate how Cumbancha, a record label in Charlotte, has enhanced Vermont’s musical scene.

Philanthropy: Ethics & Practice

Students in the J-term course taught by Sarah Stroup and Steve Viner will  make grant(s) to charitable organizations totaling $10,000, provided by the Learning by Giving Foundation.


Student Projects

 Grassroots On-Site Work (GROW) with Gardens for Health International (GHI)

Hannah Geldermann ’16 and Molly McShane ’16.5 will be collaborating with GHI in Rwanda conducting soil research, working with community members, and further developing agricultural practices.

 Mapping Contestations

Jia Jun Lee ’15 aims to use colonial, government-issued, and indigenous maps to identify native land for the Penan people in Malaysia and to engage with the local community to produce participatory maps.


Shepherd Summer Poverty Internship Deadline: THIS Sun., Jan. 15th!

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Attn. Midd students seeking action to make a difference in the fight against poverty, while also developing important life skills, gaining experience working across difference, and aiding your career exploration: Shepherd Poverty Alliance.

Application Deadline: this Sunday, January 15th. Upload additional application materials through MOJO.

Paid internships are available in the following fields of service:

Missed the Info Sessions? Not too late to learn more (view PP). Questions? Email Tiffany Sargent at .