Staff

Faculty, Students, Alumni Attend Political Science Conference

Students presented research at the 74th annual Midwest Political Science Association conference in Chicago.

Students presented research at the 74th annual Midwest Political Science Association conference in Chicago.

The 74th annual Midwest Political Science Association (MPSA) conference in Chicago April 7-10 was attended by several Wesleyan faculty members, students and recent alumni. The conference, held every April, is one of the largest political science conferences with more than 5,000 presenters from throughout the United States and around the world. It is traditionally held in Chicago’s historic Palmer House Hilton.

Assistant Professor of Government Erika Franklin Fowler, Assistant Professor of Government Logan Dancey, and Assistant Professor of Government Yamil Velez all presented research at the conference. They were accompanied by Joli Holmes ’17, John Murchison ’16, Grace Wong ’18, Anh Tuan Nguyen Viet ’16, and Eki Ramadhan ’16, students who contributed to and presented research.

Also in attendance were recent alumni Leonid “Leo” Liu ’14, who presented research with Fowler, and Matt Motta ’13, now a graduate student at the University of Minnesota.

Faculty, Staff Treated to 5th Annual Taste of Middletown

Three hundred faculty and staff filled Beckham Hall for a feast of food and drink provided by 18 vendors at the fifth annual Taste of Middletown on March 9. Offerings ranged from empanadas, a macaroni and cheese bar, salads, chicken tikka masala and vegan spring rolls to a wide assortment of pastries and desserts and a variety of beverages. Wesleyan welcomed six new vendors to the event this year, including La Piastra, Red Fox, Iguanas Ranas, Taino Smokehouse, Fiore II, Mi Argentina and Mondo.

8 Employees Receive Cardinal Achievement Awards

The following employees received Cardinal Achievement Awards during the last few months for their efforts in demonstrating extraordinary initiative in performing a specific task associated with their work at Wesleyan University.

This special honor comes with a $250 award and reflects the university’s gratitude for their extra efforts:

Dawn Alger, administrative assistant, Theater Department
Mike Conte, associate director, Physical Plant – Facilities
Steven Jacaruso, art director, University Communications
Darrell Lawrence, analyst programmer, Information Technology Services
Kathleen Logsdon, library assistant, Olin Library
Anne Marcotty, senior designer, University Communications
Liz Tinker, administrative assistant, English Department
Maureen Zimmer, coordinator, Academic Affairs

Paul Interim Director of CFA

Laura Paul became the Interim Director of the Center for the Arts on Feb. 1. She will work alongside the current director Pamela Tatge until April 1.

Paul comes to Wesleyan with three decades of experience in nonprofit arts management. Most recently she was Chief Operating Officer of the Boston-based New England Foundation for the Arts, where she was a member of the senior leadership team from 2001-2015. Previously she served as managing director of the Colorado Dance Festival and Concert Dance Company of Boston. She holds an AB from Vassar College and an MBA from the School of Management of Simmons College.

Green Team Encourages Campus to Better Manage Waste Sustainability

Wesleyan’s Green Team, currently comprised of six administrative assistants, is researching, communicating and implementing effective strategies that increase sustainability within their own departments and the university.

They’re currently focusing their efforts on managing waste sustainability, making sustainable purchases, reducing energy in their departments, encouraging colleagues and working to shift the culture of their areas to be sustainable.

Current Green Team members, pictured here holding their reusable mugs, include, from left, Roslyn Carrier-Brault, Chemistry Department; Dawn Alger, Theater Department; Valerie Marinelli, College of the Environment; Liz Tinker, English Department; Anika Dane, Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Department; and Blanche Meslin, Biology Department.

Current Green Team members, pictured here holding their reusable mugs, include, from left, Roslyn Carrier-Brault, Chemistry Department; Dawn Alger, Theater Department; Valerie Marinelli, College of the Environment; Liz Tinker, English Department; Anika Dane, Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Department; and Blanche Meslin, Biology Department.

Blanche Meslin, administrative assistant in the Biology Department, created a portable trash container for her desk. During an administrative assistants meeting on Jan. 14, the Green Team members encouraged their colleagues to replace individual garbage containers with portable desk models. Meslin created the garbage container with a used coffee can.  "If you have some garbage, you collect it in this small container and at the end of the workday, you carry it to one communal trash can that is shared by your entire office or department. But, really, it takes me several days to fill this little can up," Meslin said. “It makes you more aware of what should go into the recycle bin and reduces the amount of plastic garbage bags used."

Blanche Meslin, administrative assistant in the Biology Department, created a portable trash container for her desk. During an Academic Administrative Assistants meeting on Jan. 14, the Green Team members encouraged their colleagues to replace individual garbage containers with portable desk models. Meslin created the garbage container with a used coffee can.
“Since I removed my garbage can, I have been using this desktop can for my trash. I discard the contents at the end of the day into a larger communal bin,” Meslin said. “It makes you more aware of what should go into the recycle bin and reduces the amount of plastic garbage bags used.”

The Green Team is always open to new members. For more information on the Green Team, e-mail Anika Dane or Blanche Meslin. Also, visit the Green Team’s Green Tips page for ideas on how to make your office more sustainable!

Staff on the Move, December 2015

The Office of Human Resources reported the following new hires and departures for December 2015:

Newly hired
Colin Desjardins was hires as HVAC/utility mechanic in Physical Plant on Dec. 7.
Janet Desmarais was hired as administrative assistant in the Physics Department on Dec. 10.

Transitions
Chris Wojick was hired as data analyst in the Office of University Relations on Dec. 1.

Departures
Gail Binezewski, custodian in Physical Plant.
Randolph Alan Bougor, carpentry shop foreperson in Physical Plant.
Ralph Connolly, plumber in Physical Plant.
Peter Filanda, a/c refrigeration journeyman in Physical Plant.
Camille Martin, administrative assistant in Mellon Mays/AFAM.
David Pompei, Central Power Plant foreperson in Physical Plant.
Dara Young, Prison Education Program manager in the Center for Community Partnerships.

New Society Provides Creative Venue for Wesleyan Staff

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The Wesleyan Society for the Preservation of Domestic Technology held its first meeting Jan. 6 in Usdan University Center. At left, Joanne Rafferty, associate director of operations, crochets a scarf. She learned to crochet by watching a video tutorial online.

A group of Wesleyan staff members is forming a “close-knit” community over crocheting and crafts.

Bulaong Ramiz, assistant director of student activities and leadership development, learned how to knit in high school and was recently taught how to crochet by her friend and colleague Allie Grella. “I’m working on my first ever headband to keep my ears warm during these chilly months,” she said.

Bulaong Ramiz, assistant director of student activities and leadership development, learned how to knit in high school and was recently taught how to crochet by her friend and colleague Allie Grella. “I’m working on my first ever headband to keep my ears warm during these chilly months,” she said.

Dubbed the Wesleyan Society for the Preservation of Domestic Technology, the group held its first meeting Jan. 6 in Usdan University Center. Participants gathered for one hour for crafting and camaraderie.

“You provide your own lunch and supplies, and we provide an environment fostering whimsy, creativity and technical facility in the traditional craft arts,” said group creator Nate Lerner, director of university events and scheduling. “All campus crafters are welcome!”

Lerner brought a cross-stitch project to the gathering.

“This is a scene from the Miyazaki film My Neighbor Totoro,” he said, stitching an umbrella. “It’s one of my wife’s favorite movies (Rachel Lerner ’06), and I’m making it for her office. I don’t have any other portable craft skills, so I plan on continuing to bring cross stitch projects to the meetings.”

Joanne Rafferty, associate director of operations, learned how to crochet last week by watching a video on YouTube.

C-CERT Trainees Participate in Team-Building Exercise

On Jan. 6, Wesleyan's Campus Community Emergency Response Team (C-CERT) trainees participated in a team-building exercise. While working in groups of three and four, the teams each had five minutes to plan how they’d construct a 5-foot-tall, free standing structure using only paper, two sheets of cardboard, tape and scissors.

On Jan. 6, Wesleyan’s Campus Community Emergency Response Team (C-CERT) trainees participated in a team-building exercise.

While working in groups of three and four, the teams each had five minutes to plan how they’d construct a 5-foot-tall, free standing structure using only paper, two sheets of cardboard, tape and scissors.

While working in groups of three and four, the teams each had five minutes to plan how they’d construct a 5-foot-tall, free standing tower using only paper, two sheets of cardboard, tape and scissors.

Pilot Program Gives Students Insight into Local Nonprofits

Wesleyan Nonprofit Board Residency Program

Members of the Center for Community Partnerships’ new Nonprofit Board Residency Program. From left to right: Joe Samolis (Middlesex Historical Society), Ben Romero ’16, Patrick McKenna (rear, Middlesex Habitat for Humanity), Liza Bayless ’16, Jennifer Roach (Wesleyan Civic Engagement Fellow), Kevin Whilhelm (rear, Middlesex United Way), Sarah Bird (Middlesex Habitat for Humanity), Nancy Fischbach (Community Foundation of Middlesex County), Cynthia Clegg (Community Foundation of Middlesex County), Cathy Lechowicz (Center for Community Partnerships), Diana Martinez (Wesleyan Center for Community Partnerships), Arpita Vora ’16, Makaela Kingsley (Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship), John Bassinger (NEAR, Buttonwood Tree), and Bria Grant ’17. Missing: Aidan Martinez ’17. (Photo by Lu Imbriano ’18)

Arpita Vora ’16 clicks through a website that seeks to raise awareness about the hardships faced by low-income families in North Carolina. Middlesex United Way, the organization at which Vora was placed through the Center for Community Partnerships’ yearlong pilot Nonprofit Board Residency Program, is hoping to create a similar site using data from Connecticut.

Staff on the Move, November 2015

The Office of Human Resources reported the following new hires and departures for November 2015:

Newly hired
Terry Emmons was hired as accounting specialist in chemistry on Nov. 2
Celestine Schwenneker was hired as administrative assistant in university relations on Nov. 2
Martha Crebbin was hired as administrative assistant in the college of social studies on Nov. 30

Transitions
Renee Johnson-Thornton was hired as the Dean for the Class of 2018 on Nov. 16

Departures
Nicholas Vennochi, sports information intern in communications.

Cardona, Ramiz, Daniels Honored with Cardinal Achievement Awards

Elisa Cardona and Bulaong Ramiz from the Office of Student Activities and Leadership Development each received a Cardinal Achievement Award for their extraordinary efforts in facilitating a series of community discussions and educational workshops (over several weekends) in the wake of the publication of a controversial op-ed about the Black Lives Matter movement in the Wesleyan Argus.

“These have been significant time commitments in addition to their already hectic job responsibilities” said Dean Mike Whaley. “I also want to highlight my observation that these discussions have been especially helpful and healing because they were designed in a way that participants were talking with each other, rather than at each other. The effectiveness of these important discussions is clearly a result of Elisa and Bulaong’s skilled facilitation as well as their deep commitment toward cultivating a campus environment that values diversity and inclusion as a cornerstone of students’ campus experience.”

Christine Daniels, executive assistant to the vice president for finance and administration, was awarded with a Cardinal Achievement Award for coordinating events for the Consortium on Financing Higher Education assembly meeting in October. Administrators from 35 colleges in the United States visited Wesleyan’s campus for this significant meeting.

Daniels worked with campus staff and vendors, and staff at the Inn at Middletown.

“Christine came in early and stayed late over a period of several days as she managed the entire event. The event went flawlessly and in many ways that was because of her extraordinary dedication and effort,” said John Meerts, vice president for finance and administration.

This special honor comes with a $250 award and reflects the university’s gratitude for those extra efforts. Award recipients are nominated by department chairs and supervisors.

Nominations can be made anytime throughout the year. For more information or to nominate a staff member for the award, visit the Cardinal Achievement Award website. Recipients will continue to be recognized in News @ Wesleyan. See past Cardinal Achievement Award recipients here.