Tag Archive for staff

Staff on the Move September 2015

The Office of Human Resources reported the following new hires, transitions and departures for September 2015: 

Newly hired
Max Sass was hired as a men’s basketball intern in the Department of Athletics on Sept. 1.
Laura Pierce was hired as a women’s basketball intern in the Department of Athletics on Sept. 1.
Adrian Blackadar was hired as a men’s soccer intern in the Department of Athletics on Sept. 1.
Prashanie Silva was hired as senior budget analyst in financial planning on Sept. 3.
Marek Mikunda was hired as program coordinator in Upward Bound on Sept. 14.
Lee Maes was hired as a volleyball intern in the Department of Athletics on Sept. 15.
Kate Quigley Lynch`82 was hired as assistant director of annual giving for the Wesleyan Fund on Sept. 15.
Allison Grella was hired as assistant director of university events and scheduling on Sept. 17.
James Zareski was hired as a research assistant/ lab manager in the Department of Earth and Environmental Science on Sept. 21.
Chris Wojick was hired as assistant director of annual giving for the Wesleyan Fund on Sept. 28.
Steven Bertolino was hired as academic computing manager for arts and humanities on Sept. 30.

Transitions
Jayana Mitchell was hired as budget analyst in financial planning on Sept. 7.
Samantha Burr was hired as manager of the Cardinal Technology Store on Sept.  21.

Departures
Anita Deeg-Carlin, administrative assistant in physics
Brian Katten, sports information director in the Office of University Communications

Smith is New Associate Director of Fellowships, Internships, Exchanges

Kathleen “Kate” Smith is the associate director of fellowships, internships and exchanges for the Center for Global Studies. (Photo by Rebecca Goldfarb Terry '19)

Kathleen “Kate” Smith is the associate director of fellowships, internships and exchanges for the Center for Global Studies. (Photo by Rebecca Goldfarb Terry ’19)

In this Q&A we speak with Kathleen Smith from the Center for Global Studies. Smith helps identify and cultivate a global perspective that is meaningful to students, alumni, and faculty across the university. 

Q: Welcome to Wesleyan! When did you start?

A: My first day was Aug. 3, so I am still learning my way around campus!

Q: As the associate director of fellowships, internships and exchanges for the Center for Global Studies (located in Fisk Hall), what is your mission when working with students?

A: The role is a little bit of everything – fellowships, internships and exchanges – so I see myself as a resource to students (and in some cases alumni) depending on what they would like to accomplish. My goal when working with students is to help them navigate the numerous opportunities that exist. I see part of my role as supporting students (and alumni) in exploring various fellowship opportunities.

I will also promote partnerships with peer institutions in the United States and with targeted institutions abroad. Overall, my role within the Center for Global Studies is to identify and help cultivate a global perspective that will address what would be most meaningful to students, alumni and faculty across Wesleyan University.

Q: What is a typical day like?

A: At the moment, 9 to 5 is an orientation of Wesleyan. I have been meeting faculty, staff and deans from across campus because my work intersects with a few different areas. With students back on campus, I expect it to be more student-centric. I have begun to advise students and alumni on fellowships because deadlines are coming up.

Q: Wesleyan offers about 15 fellowship opportunities that require nomination from Wesleyan faculty or staff (including the Fulbright, Rhodes, Marshall, Mitchell, Watson, Goldwater and the Winston Churchill Foundation Scholarship, to name a few.) How do you assist students with this application process?

A: The process really varies from student to student. I provide a wide range of guidance: understanding what a fellowship is, offering feedback on a written statement, discussing how to ask for a letter of recommendation, providing insight about graduate school abroad,

Faculty, Staff Mingle at Ice Cream Social

On June 3, Wesleyan's Human Resources Department held an all faculty and staff Ice Cream Social in the Usdan Courtyard.

On June 3, Wesleyan’s Human Resources Department held an all faculty and staff Ice Cream Social in the Usdan Courtyard.

On June 3, the Office of Human Resources coordinated an Ice Cream Social for faculty and staff. The event took place at Usdan University Center’s Huss Courtyard.

Employees won raffle prizes and participated in volleyball games, water balloon toss and bean bag toss. Mario Torres, a material handler from Physical Plant, deejayed the event while the Center for the Arts provided musical entertainment with steel pan drums. Several students who work on campus over the summer also attended the social event.

“This was a fun way for colleagues to get out of the office, mingle and kick off the summer months,” said Lauren Davis, Human Resources generalist.

Photos of the event are below: (Photos by Laurie Kenney and Olivia Drake)

eve_icecreamsocial_2015-0603150108

Faculty, Staff Enjoy a ‘Taste of Middletown’

More than 325 staff and faculty members turned out for the fourth annual Taste of Middletown, presented by the Campus Activities Committee on April 29 in Beckham Hall. Attendees enjoyed sampling food, drinks and desserts from more than a dozen local restaurants, hotels, and bakeries, as well as Bon Appetit and WB Mason. Together, the attendees donated $145 and 285 pounds of non-perishable food items to the Amazing Grace Food Pantry, a program of St. Vincent de Paul in Middletown.

More than a dozen people won raffle prizes, including gift cards to local restaurants, overnight stays at local hotels, a round of golf, and a car rental. Raffle prizes were provided by Crowne Plaza Cromwell, Inn at Middletown, Sheraton Hartford South, Courtyard by Marriott Cromwell, ION, WB Mason, Ricoh-USA, Lyman Orchards, Celtic Cavern, Bon Appetit, Papa John’s, Enterprise, The Pickle Stand, Sweet Harmony, Bill Grant Restaurant, and Luce.

(Photos by Hannah Norman ’16 and Olga Bookas, director of purchasing.)

Dena Matthews, publication production manager, and Camille Martin, administrative assistant, of University Communications.

Dena Matthews, publication production manager, and Camille Martin, administrative assistant, of University Communications.

Lechowicz Honored with State Community Service Award

Cathy Lechowicz, director of the Center for Community Partnerships, right, displaying her award with William Dyson, chairman of the Connecticut Commission on Community Service, and Jane Ciarleglio, executive director of the Commission.

Cathy Lechowicz, director of the Center for Community Partnerships, right, displaying her award with William Dyson, chairman of the Connecticut Commission on Community Service, and Jane Ciarleglio, executive director of the Commission.

#THISISWHY

Cathy Lechowicz, director of the Center for Community Partnerships, was one of six people honored with a 2015 Community Service Award by the Connecticut Commission on Community Service and the Office of Higher Education. The winners–drawn from college students, campus programs and faculty and staff–were recognized at a ceremony April 14 at the Connecticut State Capitol.

This was the 23rd annual awards ceremony conducted by the Connecticut Commission on Community Service. More than 50 students, faculty and staff attended the ceremony.

“I am humbled by the recognition and grateful to work with an incredible team of people at Allbritton, on campus and in the community,” said Lechowicz. “Wesleyan has been extremely supportive of our community engagement initiatives and I’m looking forward to further developing our programs.”

Mlozanowski Author of Night Flying

Joy Mlozanowski, library assistant/accounting specialist, is the author of Night Flying, published by Port Yonder Press in January 2015.

Abstract: In her diary, Mae questions God as she and her husband confront the news of an abnormal pregnancy and agonize over the decisions they face. Needing time away to think, she visits her childhood home and reconnects with Will, a deaf friend who taught her to sign when they were young. After her visit, Mae and Will continue an intimate written exchange in which she confides her despair, while Will shares his own struggle to honor the wishes of his dying father, and reconcile his mother’s reluctance to let go.

This collection of correspondences between Mae and Will form a powerful, nonjudgmental narrative around faith and the controversial topics of abortion and end-of-life care. Their story is one of understanding and hope, and promises to deeply touch anyone who has faced these difficult and heartbreaking choices.

Mlozanowski has an MFA from Southern Connecticut State University, and also is a visual artist and the assistant editor for Pith Journal. Read more: www.joychristine.com

Public Safety Holds Rape Aggression Defense Training for Staff

Lt. Jay Mantie, in the RAD protective suit, attacks Officer Kathy Burdick.

Lt. Jay Mantie, in the RAD protective suit, attacks Sergeant Kathy Burdick.    (Photos by Cynthia E. Rockwell)

The meeting ran much later into the evening than usual, and you are walking back to your car alone. The parking lot is both dark and deserted. Suddenly a figure steps out of the shadows not five feet in front of you. What do you do?

Thanks to a special training course on campus, a dozen members of the Wesleyan community have a new set of skills to use in both assessing and responding to threatening situations like the one described above.

Public Safety Lt. Jay Mante and Officer Kathy Burdick.

Public Safety Lt. Jay Mantie and Sgt. Kathy Burdick are teaching the Rape Aggression Defense class.

Rape Aggression Defense—or RAD—training, was recently offered to the university’s female staff members, coordinated by Krystal-Gayle O’Neill, a residential life area coordinator. Lieutenant Jay Mantie was the lead trainer, assisted by Sergeant Kathy Burdick. Officer Melissa Widlack is also a RAD trainer and works with the team. The three earned RAD training credential by passing an intensive four-day training course on the core fundamentals of RAD training.

“There was a physical component and a mental component to the training,” Mantie said. “We were given a tough and comprehensive test at the end to ensure we knew the material well.”

It’s clear that he, Burdick, and Widlack passed the week-long intensive with flying colors. While Mantie explains RAD through its mission statement (“The goal of RAD is to develop and enhance the options of self defense, so they may become viable considerations to the woman who is attacked”), he also underscores a key result of learning the physical techniques.

“The training empowers women through self-defense,” said Lt. Mantie, “and leads the trainees to realize that they can defend themselves if attacked, and that they can be responsible for their own safety.” The result is women with confidence because they now have a tool that they can effectively use if needed. The course is not limited to sexual assault defense, and Mantie encourages the class to consider other instances in which it may be an important asset. “RAD training also provides defense against abduction, domestic violence, or any other form of aggression towards women,” he noted.

However, Mantie also gives the trainees a caveat. “No program is capable of adequately preparing or training an individual in every situation,” he cautioned, “so there is a mental component to the training as well.”

This part is risk management, with four key tenets: risk awareness, risk reduction, risk recognition, and risk avoidance. In other words, the trainees are taught how to identify potentially high-risk situations, and make informed decisions to avoid or mitigate this danger.

Mantie explains, “We teach trainees to identify a bad situation before it turns worse. For example, walking alone to your car at night and seeing a van parked in the spot next to yours in an otherwise empty parking lot. It is important not only to identify this as a risky situation, but also to know what you can do to lower the chances of a confrontation.”

Lt. Mantie sneaks up on Officer Burdick.

Lt. Mantie sneaks up on Sgt. Burdick.

Another important part of the risk management training is awareness. Mantie noted that one purpose of RAD training wasn’t to make its trainees paranoid, but rather, to help them be able to quickly identify the times and places one has to be more alert. “We provide them realistic, real-world scenarios that they could potentially face in the future,” he explained.

On the last day of training, each woman is able to practice the moves on a male attacker in a protective suit. “I can easily feel if the women use the moves correctly,” said Mantie. “The protective suit keeps me safe, but I can tell that if I weren’t wearing the gear I would be in a lot of pain.”

As University Protestant Chaplain, Mehr-Muska Mentors, Offers Confidential Support

As the university’s Protestant chaplain, Tracy Mehr-Muska wears many hats, including mentor, cheerleader, religious tutor, celebrant of sacraments, caregiver, counselor, listener, worship leader and event planner, among others.

As the university’s Protestant chaplain, Tracy Mehr-Muska wears many hats, including mentor, cheerleader, religious tutor, celebrant of sacraments, caregiver, counselor, listener, worship leader and event planner, among others. (Photo by Olivia Drake)

In this Q&A, meet Tracy Mehr-Muska, Wesleyan’s Protestant chaplain. 

Q: Rev. Mehr-Muska, how long have you been Wesleyan’s Protestant chaplain, and what did you do before this?

A: This is my third year as a university chaplain at Wesleyan. Like many, my professional journey was not a direct route. After graduating from the Coast Guard Academy, I served as a Deck Watch Officer in the U.S. Coast Guard. My love of the sea and my degree in Marine/Environmental Science led me to subsequently work as a marine scientist, conducting oceanographic surveys and engineering subsea cable routes for a company that installed transoceanic fiberoptic telecommunications cable. although I loved my job, I felt most deeply fulfilled when attending church, visiting sick or homebound parishioners, or volunteering with the church’s youth. I then transitioned to Princeton Theological Seminary, and after graduating, became an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA). I served as a chaplain for a hospice program in Boston, where I ministered to people approaching death and to their families. Although I loved hospice chaplaincy, it has been thrilling and fun to now work with people at the other end of their lives—students newly emerging into adulthood who are working to discern their vocational identity and establish their priorities, distinctiveness and values.

Q: Coming from such a different background, what made you want to become a university chaplain?

A: My years at the Coast Guard Academy were immensely challenging personally, physically, and spiritually. The two caring and patient military chaplains who served as my chaplains were not only instrumental in my surviving, thriving, and graduating, but they were also influential in helping me find joy and deepen my faith.

Staff on the Move, September 2014

The Office of Human Resources reported the following new hires and departures for September 2014:

Newly hired
Janani Iyer was hired as a research assistant/lab coordinator in the Psychology Department on Sept. 2.
Ilona Bass was hired as a research assistant/lab coordinator in the Psychology Department on Sept. 2.
Paul Wilson Cauley was hired as a researcher in the Astronomy Department on Sept. 8.
Franklin Huynh was hired as a senior budget analyst in the Office of Financial Planning on Sept. 15.
Michael Schramm was hired as assistant director of the Wesleyan Fund on Sept. 15.
Luigi Solla was hired an associate director of admission for the Office of Admission on Sept. 22.

Transitions
Thomas Diascro was hired as director of alumni and parent relations for University Relations on Sept. 8.

Departures
Rani Arbo, fellow in the College of the Environment.
Christopher Andrews, senior budget analyst in the Office of Financial Planning.
Linnea Benton, library assistant in Olin Library.
Edward Chiburis, facility and events manager for Memorial Chapel/ ’92 Theater.

Staff on the Move, August 2014

The Office of Human Resources reported the following new hires and departures for August 2014:

Newly hired
Sydney Lewis was hired as an assistant dean of admission on Aug. 4.

William Jack was hired as the associate dean of admission and financial aid on Aug. 4.

Nicholas Vennochi was hired as a sports information intern on Aug. 11.

Caitlyn DeClement joined the President’s Office as an office assistant on Aug. 18.

Martin Oversees Student Employment, Counsels Families on Financial Aid Issues

Sean Martin.

Sean Martin, senior associate director in the Financial Aid Office, says most students work an average of five to 10 hours per week. (Photo by Olivia Drake)

This year, The Wesleyan Connection will feature conversations with students who perform important work all over campus, and out in the Middletown community. In this issue, we speak with Sean Martin, senior associate director in the Financial Aid Office, who oversees student employment.

Q: Sean, please tell us about your role as senior associate director in the Financial Aid Office.

A: I’ve been working in the Financial Aid Office at Wesleyan for going on 10 years, and my responsibilities there have expanded over time. One aspect of my job is overseeing all facets of student employment. I spend a good amount of my time reading files of applicants and current students, and counseling students and families about financial aid issues. I also do various other things, including serving as liaison to Athletics and ITS.

Q: How many students have jobs at Wesleyan?

A: Students can work on campus whether they are eligible for work-study funding or not. Approximately 1,500 students work on-campus each year, roughly 1,100 of whom are work-study eligible students.

Q: How many hours do students typically work each week?

A: Most positions require students to commit to an average of five to 10 hours per week.

Faculty, Staff Sample Local Eateries at Taste of Middletown

The Campus Activities Committee sponsored the 3rd Annual Taste of Middletown, an event offering samples from 15 local restaurants and hotels including Typhoon Asian Cuisine, Sweet Harmony Bakery, Lyman Orchards and more. The event took place on April 30 in Beckham Hall and included a raffle prizes.

More than 225 Wesleyan faculty and staff attended. Employees were encouraged to donate non-perishable food items to Amazing Grace, a food pantry located in Middletown.

“Amazing Grace is grateful to all of our employees who donated a whopping 227 pounds of food and an additional $80 in cash,” said event organizer Olga Bookas, director of purchasing. “That’s quite impressive and goes a long way toward providing food for almost 1,000 households every month at Amazing Grace.”

Other participants included Bon Appétit, Tavern at the Armory, WB Mason, Haveli India, Esca, Tschudin Chocolates, Sheffield’s, It’s Only Natural, Lyman Orchards, the Inn at Middletown, Crowne Plaza Cromwell, Courtyard by Marriott Cromwell and Sheraton Hartford South.

Photos of the event are below: (Photos by Olivia Drake)

Taste of Middletown, April 30, 2014.

Taste of Middletown, April 30, 2014.