GMC professor Paula Mann (theater) will be performing the role of Emily Dickinson in the solo show “The Belle of Amherst” at the Oldcastle Theatre in Bennington from April 1-April 3. Showtimes are Friday April 1 and Saturday April 2 at 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday April 3 at 2 p.m. The play is described by the New York Daily News as “full of passion, poetry and heart.” Oldcastle is offering student rates of $10 a ticket for all GMC faculty, staff and students! Just bring your GMC ID with you to the box office.
Students and faculty in the adventure education program attended the 2016 International Conference on Outdoor Leadership, held February 25-27 at the University of Pennsylvania, California, Penn. Representing Green Mountain College were students Danielle Belletete, Alex Ruffins, Maven Torres, and professors Andrew G. Bentley and Paul Stonehouse. Due to their on-going commitment to the professional field of outdoor leadership, at the conclusion of the conference Andrew and Paul were approved for inclusion within the International Registry of Outdoor Educators and Leaders. They were also awarded the title of Certified Outdoor Educator by the Wilderness Education Association. This certification status allows the faculty to present Outdoor Leadership Certificates to graduates of the adventure education academic curriculum starting in the 2016-17 academic year.
Prof. Vance Jackson (psychology) will present a program titled “Changing Minds” as part of the local Science Pub series on March 6 at 4 p.m. at the Iron Lantern in Castleton. Persuasion is central to so many areas of our lives, from politics and marketing to personal relationships. Vance discusses the science behind the art of persuasion. He will present different models of persuasion, touch on the psychology behind each, and give us tips for improving our own persuasive skills. The Science Pub series, organized by Castleton Free Library Friends, is a free gathering of people curious to hear short, informal lectures by local experts.
Mike Blust, professor emeritus and research associate for GMC, recently published “The Odonata of Vermont” with co-author Bryan Pfeiffer in the Bulletin of Odonatology (Volume 11, Number 3-4, November 2015). It is a profile of the diversity and distribution of the 142 species of dragonflies and damselflies found in Vermont. Much of the information in the monograph has also been used as part of the Vermont Center for Ecostudies’ Vermont Atlas of Life project.
World leaders in Paris are in the midst of high-stakes negotiations aimed at slowing the pace of global climate change.
“A political moment like this may not come again,” U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told leaders gathered for the conference last week.
Forty thousand delegates from 195 countries are attending the Conference of Parties (COP21). The participants are trying to agree on legally binding reductions in greenhouse gas emissions to hold global average temperatures short of a two degree Celsius increase over pre-industrial global temperatures.
For those who know her, it’s not surprising that GMC adjunct faculty member Mindy Blank ’10 is in the midst of discussions. She is attending the talks as a project coordinator for HELIO International, a Paris-based non-profit that helps nations transition towards a low-carbon based economy by developing long-term sustainable, economically feasible alternatives.
Mindy Blank earned a master’s degree from Vermont Law School after graduating from GMC in 2010. She spent time in Paris working for the International Energy Agency, helping countries accelerate the deployment if renewable energy and energy efficiency technology. She is consulting with HELIOS International in addition to her teaching duties at GMC this semester.
“I hope to see government from every country in the world come to agreement on a mechanism for achieving a sustainable energy future,” Mindy said in an interview before leaving for Paris last week.
We’ve been compiling dispatches on the talks for the College’s COP21 web page. Visit the page to get day-by-day updates of COP21 topics and some of Mandy’s first-hand impressions.
In his letter published by the Chronicle of higher Education, prof. Steve Fesmire (philosophy) warns against the long-term dangers to society of commodifying higher education. “It would be a tragedy that trivializes all of our successes if U.S. educational politics and policy continues down a path in which colleges and universities — or industries, for that matter! — gain economic efficiency and increase productivity by frustrating human growth, imagination, and fulfillment.” Read the full text here.
The digital revolution is making an impact on another traditional sport: tennis. GMC professor of communication studies and tennis enthusiast Jason Schmitt recently had a chance to test out new technology that provides immediate feedback to improving a backhand, or increasing the velocity of a serve.
“Tennis could be witnessing one the most important technological evolutions in its history: connected tennis,” Jason writes. “The connected tennis environment is an exciting merge for a sport with such longstanding traditions . . . we are definitely in-line for a stream of continual upgrades and technological evolution.”
Read his full Huffington Post story.
“One of Dewey’s basic educational ideas was that kids learn better when they organically assimilate knowledge in an active, personal, imaginative and direct way,” writes GMC prof. Steven Fesmire (philosophy). “A school may train more students with fewer teachers, and an industrial sector may produce more clothes, cars or animal protein to meet market demands with lower overhead costs. These products can then be used, or put to work to produce more things. The industrial imagination stops here, with efficient production. This is arguably useful, but what else has been unintentionally made, to which industrial thinking is oblivious? Have we made narrower lives? Have we at times embittered and disabled ourselves? Have we anesthetized moral and ecological sensitivity? Have we, in Dewey’s words, made life more ‘congested, hurried, confused and extravagant?'”
Read Steven’s thoughts on the subject in this Rutland Herald editorial. Steven is author of Dewey (Routledge, 2015), John Dewey and Moral Imagination (Indiana University Press, 2003), and editor of the Oxford Handbook of Dewey (Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2017).
Sustainability 2020 – Moving forward
Check out this new video from the College’s communications department on the story of clean energy at GMC.
President Paul Fonteyn Announces Plan to Step Down at End of Academic Year
Green Mountain College President Paul J. Fonteyn has announced that he will step down as president at the end of the 2015-16 academic year.
“The accomplishments I have achieved during my tenure as president have only been possible because of the vibrant, creative, and dedicated faculty and staff composing the Green Mountain community,” Fonteyn said. “It has been an honor to serve as president for the past seven years. I will miss a lot of things, but especially the students.”
The seventh president in GMC history, Fonteyn was appointed in June, 2008.
Dr. Anthony D. Cortese, chair of the Board of Trustees, stated: “Paul Fonteyn has done an immense job over the past seven years that we on the board greatly appreciate. He led us in becoming one of the nation’s top colleges in environmental, social and economic sustainability and greatly expanded cutting-edge online graduate programs. Dr. Fonteyn achieved this during one of the most difficult times in higher education history beginning with the 2008 recession.
He has been Green Mountain College’s greatest champion and a model for loyalty, public service and sustainability—the hallmarks of the College’s mission. The College owes him our deepest gratitude for his service and legacy. We wish him the best in the next chapter of his personal and professional life.”
During Paul’s tenure, GMC was ranked in 2010 as the top environmental school in the nation by Sierra Magazine, the second Greenest School in 2015 by the Princeton Review, and one of the top fifty excellent yet affordable colleges in the nation by Forbes magazine in May 2015. In 2011, GMC became the first college in the nation to achieve carbon neutrality through a combination of campus-wide efficiency, adoption of clean energy, and purchase of local carbon offsets.
Paul and his wife Marsha plan to split their time between Ojai, Cal., and their home on Lake Bomoseen.
Tony Cortese announced that a search committee, consisting of trustees, faculty, staff, alumni, and students, will be formed with the goal of installing a new president by the end of June, 2016. (See related story below).
Dr. Anthony D. Cortese Appointed Chair of GMC Board of Trustees
Dr. Anthony D. Cortese, internationally renowned sustainability expert, has been elected chair of the Board of Trustees of Green Mountain College. Dr. Cortese has a doctorate from Harvard School of Public Health. He served as commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, and he was the first Dean of Tufts University Environmental Programs. With the help of John Kerry and Teresa Heinz, he founded Second Nature, a non-profit organization that aims to make sustainability the foundation of all learning and practice in higher education and served as its president for 20 years. While at Second Nature he organized the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment, a publicly accountable commitment by 700 colleges & universities to become carbon neutral in operations and to make education for sustainability a foundation for student learning. He recently founded the Intentional Endowments Network to align higher education endowments with their mission. Dr. Cortese has served on the Green Mountain College Board since 2008, and he has been a scholar in residence in Green Mountain’s sustainable business MBA program.
Mr. Robert Charlebois, former managing director of Duke Energy, was elected vice chair of the Board. He has been a key figure in building Green Mountain College’s resort and hospitality major in partnership with Killington Resort, has been assisting with the College’s renewable energy projects and been instrumental in its strategic direction since he joined the board in 2009.
“We thank former Board chair Bob Allen and former vice chair Lorene Wilbur for their stalwart leadership,” said GMC president Paul Fonteyn. “As a nationally recognized leader in sustainability and education, Tony’s dedication and insight as GMC’s chairman will be a vital part of our continued success.”
GMC Convocation Features Vermont Author and Adventurer Jan Reynolds
Green Mountain College hosts its annual Fall Convocation on Tuesday, September 8 at 4 p.m. in Ackley Auditorium. The keynote speaker is author, mountaineer, adventurer and athlete Jan Reynolds, author of the book High Altitude Woman.
Reynolds, who lives in Stowe, was born on a Vermont dairy farm. She became a nationally ranked cross-country ski racer in high school and college, and raced biathlon for the U.S. National Team. She is a prize-winning photojournalist whose intrepid adventures have taken her to every continent, photographing and recording vanishing cultures to preserve their unique heritage for future generations.
Her work has been featured in the New York Times, National Geographic, Esquire, Vogue, Pe
The event is free and open to the public.
GMC Launches New Website
Green Mountain College’s website just got a facelift: the College’s new website at greenmtn.edu launched last week.
The site is built in WordPress, an easy to use and adaptable software. It brings together disparate GMC sites—including graduate and online education program pages—under one umbrella. It is also responsive—the new design makes it compatible with mobile devices and is structured to boost rankings in search engines.
Users can browse the College’s calendar, at greenmtn.edu/gmc-events/.
Students, faculty and staff can also access email, MyGMC, Moodle, and other commonly accessed sites by clicking the “login” button in the green navigation bar located at the lower right side of the home page.
The new site was designed and built by Stride Creative of Burlington, Vt., and the GMC communications office.
Check out the new site at greenmtn.edu.
Scholars in Residence Visit Campus this Month
Students have the opportunity to learn from key thinkers, policymakers and businesspeople who come to campus as visiting scholars through GMC’s graduate studies programs. The scholars are on campus for intensive 4-day residencies with GMC graduate students and give public lectures during their stay.
The 2015 visiting scholar for the College’s Master’s of Science in Environmental Studies (MSES) and Master’s of Science in Resilient and Sustainable Communities (MRSC) residencies from September 9-12 is Sandra Postel, founder of the Global Water Policy Project. Sandra lectures, writes, and consults on international water issues and in 2010 she was appointed Freshwater Fellow of the National Geographic Society, where she serves as lead water expert for the Society’s freshwater initiative.
Hailed for her “inspiring, innovative and practical approach” to promoting the preservation and sustainable use of Earth’s fresh water, Sandra is co-creator of Change the Course, the national freshwater restoration campaign undertaken by National Geographic and its partners, and being piloted in the Colorado River Basin.
She is the author of several acclaimed books, including the award-winning Last Oasis: Facing Water Scarcity, which appears in eight languages and was the basis for a PBS television documentary. She is also author of Pillar of Sand: Can the Irrigation Miracle Last? and co-author of Rivers for Life: Managing Water for People and Nature, now appearing in five languages.
Her talks include “The Global Freshwater Challenge: New Solutions for a Thirsty World” from 7-8:30 p.m. in Ackley Auditorium on Thursday, Sept. 10, and “Water: Adapting to a New Normal,” from 9:30-10:30 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 11 in The Gorge, Withey Hall.
Work Study Job Fair
The job fair will be held in Withey Lobby on September 2, 2015 between 11:00 am and 1:00 pm.
We have a new process for securing your textbooks this year. All of your books for all of your classes can be picked up at the Green Mountain College Book Depot, located on the 2nd Floor of Withey Hall, next to the East Room. The Book Depot will be open during the following days/times. Please have your student ID when you go to pick up your books–they will be pre-packaged based on the schedule of classes you are enrolled in.
- Monday (8/31): 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Tuesday (9/1) – Friday (9/4): 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Calhoun Learning Center Open House
Stop by the Calhoun Learning Center and see what we’re all about. Inquire about skills workshops, academic coaching and meet our tutors for the Fall 2015 semester! Tomorrow from 5-7 p.m.
Prof. Sue Sutheimer (chemistry) is a leading proponent of “green chemistry,” a process that encourages the design of products and processes that minimize the use and generation of hazardous substances. She recently co-authored an article “Green Soap: An Extraction and Saponification of Avocado Oil” in the Journal of Chemical Education. The article describes a green chemistry experiment that provides a new twist on soap making. Commonly used extraction solvents like petroleum ether are replaced with safer ethyl acetate to extract the oils. See the full article here.
Prof. Heather Keith (philosophy) was interviewed July 27 on “Community Matters” a program broadcast by KZUM, Lincoln, Neb. The 20-minute interview covered topics on psychology, virtues, ethics, and the iconography of the Nebraska state capital building in Lincoln. Turns out that, among several other areas of expertise, Heather is an authority on the capital’s artistic designer, a philosopher named Hartley Burr Alexander (he was a subject of some of Heather’s research early in her academic career). Listen to the podcast here.
The news media has been diverted to other stories since the cataclysmic earthquake this spring in Nepal. Prof. Kevin Bubriski (fine art) went back to Nepal this summer to check up on friends and assess how reconstruction efforts are progressing there. As usual, Kevin brought his camera, and some of the resulting images and Kevin’s first-person account were published in The New York Times’ “Lens” blog.
During the week of August 9, Prof. Bill Landesman (biology) attended the Ecological Society of America’s 100th annual meeting in Baltimore, along with Isaya Chirachaturaphak and Brian Haggerty-Perrualt. He delivere
The camera lenses of the news media have been diverted to other stories since the cataclysmic earthquake this spring in Nepal. Prof. Kevin Bubriski (fine art) went back to Nepal this summer to check up on friends and assess how reconstruction efforts are progressing. As usual, Kevin brought his camera, and some of the resulting images and Kevin’s first-person account were published in The New York Times’ “Lens” blog.