The COllege Of The ATlANTiC MAgAziNe Volume 8 . Number 1 . Spring 2012
coa's ties to mdi
It Takes an Island to Nurture a College & a College to Nurture an Island The forty-year dance between island and college
The College of the Atlantic Magazine
Letter from the President
A Modest Proposal • The Watson Journey of Blake Davis '11
The Alumnus and the Whale • Dan Dendanto '91 and Stumpy
The Kingfisher • Short Fiction by Lucy Atkins '12
Poetry • Katharine Macko
Family Involvement • Roc and Helen '80 Caivano
Feature Story · COA & MDI
It Takes an Island to Nurture a College and a College to Nurture an Island • A glimpse into the many aspects of the connection between COA and Mount Desert Island Alumni Notes
Faculty & Community Notes
Ever Wonder … ?
What Human Ecology Means to Me
Willowind Therapeutic Riding Center Story and photograph by Julia De Santis '12 Thirteen years ago, David Folger '81 helped start Willowind Therapeutic Riding Center, Inc., a nonprofit dedicated to helping the disabled community through equestrian therapy. While at COA, David was a bird and plant ecologist, a student of Bill Drury, faculty member in biology. With Bill he helped establish COA's island research station on Great Duck Island (as well as an earlier one on Petit Manan). "Willowind evolved through a marriage," says David. "She was an equestrian familiar with therapy; I was a jack-of-all-trades, by then a part-time gymnastics instructor as well — and a full-time human ecologist. It all just came together. Now we have eight horses and an indoor riding arena." Continued on page 16.
COA The College of the Atlantic Magazine Volume 8 · Number 1 · Spring 2012 Editorial Editor Editorial Guidance
Editorial Consultant Alumni Consultants
Donna Gold Heather Albert-Knopp '99 John Anderson Rich Borden Darron Collins '92 Julia De Santis '12 Michael Griffith '09 Jennifer Hughes Chris Petersen Matt Shaw '11 Scott Swann '86, MPhil '93 Bonnie Tai Bill Carpenter Jill Barlow-Kelley Dianne Clendaniel
dEsign Art Director Designer
Rebecca Hope Woods Danielle Meier '08
Coa administration President Dean of Admission Dean of Development Associate Dean for Faculty Administrative Dean Academic Dean Dean of Student Life Associate Dean for Advanced Studies
Darron Collins '92 Sarah Baker Lynn Boulger Ken Cline Andrew Griffiths Kenneth Hill Sarah Luke Sean Todd
t takes an island to nurture a college, a college to nurture an island, and a designer to nurture a magazine. To celebrate College of the Atlantic's fortieth year, COA's first alumnus president, and the fifteenth issue (has it really been that many?) of
COA, the magazine, we are introducing a new design. Speaking personally, as editor, I have been gratified by the appreciation with which COA is always greeted — and frustrated with my inability to get critical feedback. Turns out, I should have been asking designers. Since January, designers Rebecca Hope Woods and Danielle Meier '08, with the help of Darron Collins '92, our president, have come up with numerous ideas for enhancing what you are now holding in your hands. Rebecca and Dani have the kind of eyes that see beyond what is, to what could be. Of course, this penetrating vision is what launched College of the Atlantic decades ago. The vision of our founding trustees, Leslie C. Brewer and Father James Gower, and the subsequent trustees, presidents, faculty, staff, alumni, and students, is celebrated every day at COA. This issue honors the very real impact that this vision has had on Mount Desert Island — and the nurturing that MDI has in turn given to our students, offering them a whole island as a campus, teaching all of us the meaning
Coa Board of trustEEs Ronald E. Beard Leslie C. Brewer Nikhit D'Sa '06 William G. Foulke, Jr. Amy Yeager Geier George B.E. Hambleton Elizabeth D. Hodder Philip B. Kunhardt III '77 Anthony Mazlish Suzanne Folds McCullagh Sarah A. McDaniel '93 Linda McGillicuddy
Jay McNally '84 Philip S.J. Moriarty Phyllis Anina Moriarty Hamilton Robinson, Jr. Walter Robinson Nadia Rosenthal Marthann Lauver Samek Henry L.P. Schmelzer William N. Thorndike, Jr. Joan Van der Grift Paul Van der Grift Cody van Heerden
of community, and making it possible for COA to welcome
life trustees James M. Gower Samuel M. Hamill, Jr. John N. Kelly Susan Storey Lyman William V.P. Newlin John Reeves Henry D. Sharpe, Jr. Clyde E. Shorey, Jr.
trustee Emeriti David Hackett Fischer Sherry F. Huber Daniel Pierce Helen Porter Cathy L. Ramsdell '78 John Wilmerding
Thank you all.
so many passionate, smart, creative students, and then to send them off into the world — some to start theaters and theater companies on MDI, and some to save whales and oceans halfway around the globe.
Donna Gold, COA editor
The faculty, students, trustees, staff, and alumni of College of the Atlantic envision a world where people value creativity, intellectual achievement, and diversity of nature and human cultures. With respect and compassion, individuals construct meaningful lives for themselves, gain appreciation of the relationships among all forms of life, and safeguard the heritage of future generations.
COA is published biannually for the College of the Atlantic community. Please send ideas, letters, and submissions (short stories, poetry, and revisits to human ecology essays) to: 9:39:43 AM
COA Magazine, College of the Atlantic 105 Eden St, Bar Harbor, ME 04609 firstname.lastname@example.org
Front and back cover: The cover photographs are the work of Ben Macko '01, who also teaches eighth-grade math at Conners Emerson Elementary School. Ben makes small sculptures out of wire and granite. These photographs that Ben took of one of his sculptures reflect much of what COA inspires: campus and island, local and global, artist and educator, heart and mind, but most of all, the immediacy of the present and the hope of the future. –DG
From the President Darron Collins '92, PhD
ount Desert island is an extraordinary place. We have a fjord and a national park; a smashed-shell beach and two worldclass genetics labs; extreme human population dynamics and a peak that affords the continent's first view of the rising sun. Then there's this college … no better place for an extraordinary college than an extraordinary island, i suppose. CoA and MDi have coevolved over the past forty years, reciprocally bending and shaping one another to their current form — not like a blacksmith coerces shape from metal, but rather like partners in a successful marriage. of course there are instances when the two look at each other and say, "Where did that come from?" or, in so many words, "That's not the path I would have chosen," but through some differences a mature, creative and powerful whole emerges from parts.
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And that's exactly what's happened on this island.
and see our future successes depending on such reciprocity.
Walk through the town of Bar harbor and you'd be hard pressed not to see the impact of the college. travel west out eagle lake Road past the schools, over hill and dale through Acadia, and to the "quiet side" and the impact does not wane.
We live in a highly connected world. It's so much easier to be enchanted by the distant and exotic. When i look toward the future as CoA president, i see the local — right here on MDi and the coast of Maine — as the perfect laboratory for learning, exploring, and improving the way humans interact with the environment. this issue of COA celebrates how the island and the college have danced in the past and sets the stage for what the next dance might look like.
now, impact might not be the best term, only because it tends to conjure "economic impact." And, although business and economy are certainly one important shade of what CoA has brought to the island, i prefer to emphasize something more holistic: a connection that includes art, planning, intellectual and cultural fervor, conservation, and education. Also, the word "impact" feels very one-sided, very "subject-object." We've been shaped by our presence and interactions on MDi
WAter polo At the Y
November December JaNuary Nick Jenei '09 and Lauren Rupp '05 join the student life staff. Students in the class Practicum on Solar Energy install a solar array on the pottery studio, funded with a grant from the US Environmental Protection Agency and an investment by MDI Clean Energy Partners L3C. Holly Krakowski '12 stages Edward Albee's Zoo Story with actors Phinn Onens '13 and Patrick McGorrill '14.
inDepenDent stuDY BY iVY sienKieWYCZ '13
Anjali Appadurai '13 galvanizes the world when she delivers her Youth Statement to the plenary at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Durban, South Africa. The speech, written with the help of Julian Velez '15 and Nathan Thanki '14, goes viral â€” from Amy Goodman ('79) to Andrew Revkin of the New York Times, to media outlets around the globe. Naomi Klein tweets "Anjali is a hero."
JAZZ FestiVAl poster Design
february Grover's Corners, New Hampshire comes to COA when Gina Sabatini '13 stages Our Town, her debut as a director. More than thirty COA folks get involved, including President Darron Collins '92. Calling College of the Atlantic "much more than a university, it's a preparation for life," the Princeton Review listed COA as one of the nation's "best value" colleges and universities. The company's The Best Value Colleges: 2012 Edition, includes only 150 undergraduate schools: 75 public and 75 private institutions.
At the 19th Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals in Tampa, Florida, nine presentations come from COA and Allied Whale, COA's marine mammal research lab. Six are by COA students, with Jacqueline Bort MPhil '11, Jessica McCordic '12, Kathryn Scurci '11, and Chris Spagnoli '12 as senior authors. COA students get gussied up in their finest for the Aurora Ball-ealis (see above), a formal dance under starry lights in Gates Community Center.
The Osprey has launched! After acing her sea trials, Capt. Toby Stephenson '98 sails COA's new 46-foot vessel to the COA dock for an April 14 celebration with trustees. She immediately goes into heavy use, taking students on the kind mV ospreY of field trips we used to only dream about.
march COA hires two new faculty members for two-year positions: Jodi Baker, performing artist; Sarah Hall, geologist. Honors for COA students pour in: Kathryn Shlepr '13 becomes a Goldwater Scholar; Rachel Sullivan-Lord '14 receives honorable mention. Rachel Briggs '13 becomes a Udall Scholar. Kathryn Shlepr and Trudi Zundel '14 are given honorable mentions. Adrian Fernandez Jauregui '15 receives a Kathryn W. Davis Projects for Peace award. He'll help create needed rain harvesting systems among the Guarani communities of his native Bolivia.
Images: Julia Walker Thomas '12 took the first two images on top, Katie O'Brien '15 took the photo of bread. Second row: Jeana DeLaire '13, poster design by Khristian Mendez '15, photo by Toby Stephenson '98.
CheCk out more stories and photos at newsworthy.Coa.edu
april COA is one of six pioneering colleges to sign the Real Food Campus Commitment â€” and the only one to have already exceeded the 20 percent level of organic, fair trade, and local food that other colleges are pledging to attain by 2020. Currently, nearly 30 percent of COA food is "real" according to the standards of the commitment. COA hosts Food Connections: Reconnecting Hands, Mouth & Mind through Food Systems Education, a conference about sustainable food and education. E-van arrives! Thanks to the generosity of the Partridge Foundation, and the research of Alex Pine '14, COA now has a used electric van, complete with solar charger, to ferry students to and from Beech Hill and the Peggy Rockefeller Farms, strengthening student connections to our farms without warming the atmosphere.
A modest ProPosAl: Why the World needs more fly fishers the Watson Journey of Blake davis '11
Shortly after graduation, Blake Davis '11 set out on a yearlong fellowship from the Watson Foundation. His project: The Culture and Evolution of Fly Fishing Techniques. He visited Australia and Thailand before we caught up with him in Puerto Rico. He has since been to Costa Rica and India. the other night i kayaked into the laguna de la torrecilla beneath a cloudless, moonless sky, listening for the swirl of tarpon as i paddled towards the lights of a bayside bridge. After hustling through crowded lanes of Puerto Rican traffic, the solitude was overwhelming â€” the sounds of the highways hushed by the mangroves and the muddy rush of the outgoing tide. As my eyes adjusted to the darkness, I saw the stars emerge, reflecting faintly on the glassy water, rippling with the strokes of my paddle. In the peace of the moment I forgot my fishing rod and the tarpon. i leaned back on my kayak and soaked in the starlit sky. The mosquitos, never much for reflection, descended. Sharp pricks on my arms and legs poked me to attention. had someone been watching, they would have seen an apparently incapacitated kayaker suddenly begin waving his paddle like a battle axe, swearing madly, unaware of impending reefs and building swells as he drifted into an outgoing current. Absorbed in self-defense, i sped out of the lagoon into open ocean. When i regained my composure i found myself half a mile from shore, riding a riptide into the night. the calm of the water was replaced by the crash of hungry reefs snacking on beefy swells. the mosquitos high-tailed it. i put on my life jacket. if you have ever read or seen A River Runs Through It and you are considering taking up fly fishing, you probably imagine something considerably more romantic than being tossed against a reef in your modest kayak. More likely you picture yourself along the misty banks of a secluded river, casting long, perfect loops of line. Yet so often that gently flowing river is lined with poison ivy; and the unfurling line of your cast lands to hook, alas, not a spawning salmon, but the back of your neck, the peace of the moment broken by your own curses. The unadvertised truth is that fly fishing is far more diverse than its perception. As fishers have expanded it beyond the banks of rivers to oceans and bays, its traditions have become richer, as have the challenges and the responsibilities of anglers. This year I have been surprised to encounter fly fishers virtually everywhere there is water. I have found them prowling the beaches, swatting flies in lagoons, hunkering along channels, and catching dozens of species of fish. The resulting diversity of approaches in fly fishing is remarkable, as varied and quirky as the individuals
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NEWS who fish. One man I met in Australia used lead-impregnated fly fishing lines to reach ocean ledges hundreds of feet deep. (Traditionally, fly fishing is practiced in the upper few feet of the water column.) In the minute it took for his flies to reach the ocean bottom, he would sit at the front of his boat on a cooler of beer, telling me about his past as a concrete baron and how he spent his fortune.
A middle school teacher I met in Perth netted shrimp and brought them home for observation. His flies imitating these shrimp were so precise they had the same number of meticulously arranged legs as their subjects, the captured shrimp. He used these flies to catch brim beneath concrete overpasses and along downtown jetties, sloshing through the streets in his waders. In Puerto Rico I met an angler so fed up with constantly changing his lures he designed a knot that could be loosened and refastened with a few quick movements. Because this knot tended to break more easily under pressure, he switched to fishing line twice as heavy. At first I viewed the adaptations of fly fishers as interesting but insignificant beyond their novelty. After all, it is not altogether surprising that fly fishing is practiced differently than it is advertised. However the more time I spend with fishers, the more I realize the impetus for these approaches reflect worrying trends in recreational fishing, including fly fishing, trends that are more often discussed in the context of commercial fishing. One does not make a reusable fishing knot unless one has to change
lures frequently, often the case with persnickety fish that have seen extensive pressure from recreational fishers. Similarly, one does not go to the trouble of fishing hundreds of feet deep if there are large and more readily accessible fish inshore. The more fishers I have met, the more familiar I have become with decline. Decline is a common thread entangling virtually all of the world's fisheries today. There is nearly universal loss in the abundance of habitat and the numbers and diversity of fish species. This decline is even more worrisome among the people and communities that depend on fish for food and livelihoods. Amidst these trends, I am aware someone retracing my wanderings in a few decades would likely see far fewer fish and fishers. The gods forbid I have children, would they be able to walk the saltwater flats in Exmouth, Australia, and see tuna erupting along reefs? As I struggle to imagine solutions, I am often reassured by others that the human capacity for creativity is our greatest asset and hope. Those who study fisheries purport that, if anything, technological innovation and clever management will prevail against overfishing and development of vital habitat and pollution. But from what I have seen of fishers, our creative solutions have only allowed us to desperately pursue fish to all watery corners of the earth. Fly fishers are as guilty of this as commercial fishers. When one area is "fished out," we move on to other more pristine locations and develop more effective methods. By comparison, the steps taken to protect and restore fisheries seem more a matter of persistence, instances where a fair amount of
elbow grease has temporarily set a dysfunctional system into motion and helped fish and fish habitat recover. What we need to ensure the future of fisheries, I have come to believe, is the approach of fly fishers. While the world views fly fishers with misty eyes, its depiction of us has somehow failed to capture the determination of individuals who choose a pastime that is intentionally difficult. Few people see us avoiding the reefs in our modest kayaks, combatting mosquitos, being irradiated by the sun, all for the simple pleasure of holding and releasing a squiggly piece of nature whose name we can pronounce in stuttering Latin. What we need in our approach to fisheries is a similar balance between educatedness and doggedness, an ability to make a determination and follow through no matter the obstacles, the complaints, and the inevitable injury to some. While I have seen laws being put into place to protect fish and fish habitat, I have seen far fewer instances where these laws were effectively enforced. Few seem willing to limit the amount of people who can make a living off the water. And yet if we do not, dwindling stocks will do that for us, perhaps eliminating those jobs altogether. We need more than innovation or further awareness if we want there to be fish in the future. We need people who are going to push for these changes because they have felt those losses slip through their fingers. While we have been educated to believe that a greater capacity for thought will be our salvation to so many environmental binds, I would add that we also need to be far more uncompromising and compassionate if we are to inspire more than awareness. What we need is grit. What we need is gusto.
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NEWS Those who fly fish are usually aware that their method of fishing is not the most efficient. Yet among them there is a commonly held sentiment that the more difficult path renders sweeter results. This appreciation is what fly fishers have to offer. This is also why, if you own a copy of A River Runs Through It, you should burn it. Watching it will leave you infatuated but uninformed, like falling in love after a first date. If you insist on keeping your copy of this movie; or if you cannot find the matches, then you may at least want to take away something else from this famous portrayal of fly fishing. That is, fish are worth saving solely for the sake of there being fish. Not for their being caught, not for peoples' continued livelihoods, but so that fish can continue to swim. No one understands this better than fly fishers.
What we need is grit. What we need is gusto.
Read more about Blake's adventures at fishwithblake.wordpress.com.
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Blake Davis '11 takes a break from restoring the 1987 Sentra he bought to help him get around to fishing grounds in Puerto Rico. Photos courtesy of Blake Davis. 7
Dan Dendanto '91 and Toby Stephenson '98 (top) and Lindsey Nielsen '13 (below) work on installing Stumpy in the North 8 Museum of Natural Sciences. Carolina
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The Alumnus And The WhAle: Stumpy'S SEcond LifE by Donna Gold of all the large whales, right whales are the most endangered. And those living nearby, in the north Atlantic, are the rarest: only about 450 survive. So when a female named Stumpy was killed off the Virginia coast in 2004 — presumably by a ship strike — a pall went over the scientific and conservation communities. But the celebration of this whale's life at the just-opened nature Research Center of the north Carolina Museum of natural Sciences in Raleigh might possibly help to conserve more whales even than Stumpy and her future progeny would have engendered. the museum is impressive, a $56 million expansion focused on research methods — how we know what we know about science. A focal point is the three-ton, fiftyfoot skeleton of Stumpy. the creator of the exhibit is Dan DenDanto '91, who runs the business Whales and nails on Mount Desert island, employing a crew of local alumni and students: CoA boat captain toby Stephenson '98, Courtney Vashro '99, lindsey nielsen '13, and Allied Whale intern Jennifer oraze. though Dan is nearing completion of a PhD in marine biology from the University of Maine orono, and is also a research associate at Allied Whale, CoA's marine mammal research lab, his range spans far beyond science. Spend an hour with him — especially if you're lucky enough to be near Stumpy or one of the other mammals he has articulated — and you'll feel the power of the whale's life transmitted through Dan's passion. his comprehension comes from reading the individual's bones as a scientist, from College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
handling them as a craftsman and artist, from informed curiosity as a forensic researcher, and from his concern as a conservationist: the epitome of hands-on, interdisciplinary, heartfelt human ecology. Stumpy was first sighted in 1975. While right whales are distinguishable by the markings on their heads, Stumpy was known by her broken tail, likely the result of an early encounter with a vessel. the strike left her with a stump, hence her name, but it didn't stop this massive creature, the third-largest right whale ever recorded. And because she was observed with five different calves over thirty years, she was also called "the mother of right whales." there may have been more calves. We can assume Stumpy was at least forty years old, since it takes a decade for a female to mature to the point of spending a year carrying a calf. She could have been sixty. Right whales are fertile for a long time, says Dan. While it's possible to age a right whale by plumbing the inner wax core of its ear, where an annual ring grows, the core decomposes quickly. And Stumpy's ears "were snapped clean off during the collision with the ship," Dan says. in fact, her rostrum — or beak — was broken and severed. in his reconstruction, Dan has offset the rostrum some six inches from her body to show the impact of the ship strike.
having articulated whales for the new Bedford Whaling Museum, harvard University Museum of Comparative zoology, and nantucket Whaling Museum in Massachusetts, and for new hampshire’s Phelps Science Center at Philips exeter Academy and the Seacoast Science Center, among other institutions, Dan has learned to read a whale through its bones. this fertile mom was plagued by bone deformity. Where there ought to have been soft cartilage between her vertebrae, there are numerous bone spurs — much like what happens to humans as they grow stiff with age. "This animal is fully fused," says Dan. "each one of these vertebrae is turned entirely into bone" — a condition indicating a female of a certain age. Add to that the numerous bone crumbs that were found inside her body — presumably from what was likely the ship encounter that gave her the name of Stumpy — and this poor mother could have used a daily, whale-sized dose of Aleve. And yet it was likely not her arthritic bones that caused her death. Right whales are not afraid of noise. A whale swimming across the bow of a vessel may not even know it's in danger. even more tragic, the most vulnerable whales tend to be females. Pregnant females. While most northern right whales overwinter near Cape Cod Bay, the pregnant ones head to the warmer waters off Virginia into georgia and northern florida. Anyone familiar with the coast knows that these preferred calving grounds happen to be the same as one of the nation's busiest shipping lanes.
Yes, Stumpy was pregnant. She was close to giving birth when she was hit. lisa gatens is the mammals curator at the north Carolina museum. When Stumpy was discovered, floating and dead, it was lisa who was called to meet the vessel towing her in; some years later, it was her team that contracted Dan to articulate Stumpy. "he knows the anatomy as well as anyone, he knows the animal," says lisa. "his team was amazing. they were just so pleasant, smart, and capable â€” and they produced this wonderful outcome. they were a delight to work with." Dan's journey to whale articulation began while a student at CoA. it was 1987, Dan's first year at the college, and he was already working at Allied Whale. That winter a fin whale mandible lying on the ground near the Arts and Sciences Building was struck by a snow plow. it galvanized Dan. "We should do something, turn it into an exhibit," he said at the time. Working on an independent study guided by former CoA taxidermist Skip Buyers-Basso '83, Dan created the whale skull that 10
remains CoA's landmark icon. "i've coauthored five scientific papers and I think there are fifteen people who have read them," he says."But i've done a dozen exhibitions, and with this one i'll go over a million visitors a year who have seen a whale that i have put together. it has been a privilege to have the opportunity to convey this conservation message."
for seven months, Stumpy's skeleton filled the three-car garage Dan uses as his studio. Her flippers sat in the central hallway of the home off the Tremont Road he shares with his wife, alumna and teacher Megan Smith '90, and their two sons, gus and Rocco. But before Dan could receive Stumpy's bones, they had to be separated from her body, a process that's given to nature. Stumpy's remains were buried in a huge manure pile, where Collegeof ofthe theAtlAntiC AtlAntiCMAgAzine MAgAzine College
NEWS Yes, Stumpy was pregnant. Indeed, she was close to giving birth when she was hit. installation act. Says Dan, "it brought a warm feeling of satisfaction to see mother and offspring reunited." Stumpy did not die in vain. Researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic institution cross-sectioned her jaw to determine the bone density and level of force it would take to break it. This information led directly to guidelines asking large vessels to slow down to ten knots when patrol flights discover right whales in the area. At that speed, say scientists, a strike should be survivable. While three right whales were killed the same year Stumpy died, since these guidelines were created only one other right whale has been killed by a ship strike.
worms and other creatures spent about a year cleaning off the muscle and blubber. to get the skeleton absolutely clean, Dan mimicked the old whalers, trying the remaining fat by boiling the oil out of the bones in huge vats on a woodstove outside his home. Otherwise, he says, the oil can leach notoriously unpleasant odors into the museum for years after. there are a multitude of challenges in accurately reassembling a skeleton. When Stumpy's bones were delivered, they laid out to thirty-nine feet. But Stumpy measured fifty-two feet when she was found. After subtracting two feet for flesh and blubber, Dan used his knowledge of the skeletal frame to get the proportions right, widening the spaces toward the tail section as they would be in a living creature, allowing for more movement. to space out the vertebrae, Dan created College of College ofthe theAtlAntiC AtlAntiCMAgAzine MAgAzine
an inorganic cartilage out of epoxycoated foam and papier maché, threading the bones onto hidden steel pipes and rebar — and working with the museum on the logistics of hanging the threeton exhibit. And then there was the fetus. Stumpy's calf, the museum and Dan's crew all agreed, ought to rest within her womb again. But scientists didn't know what shape he would have taken. Toothed whales curl like a question mark inside the mother. But since whales emerge tail first, there's some speculation that the large ones may straighten out well before birth, so Dan left the fetus straight. Raising the seventeen-foot, full-term whale back into the mother was the final
Whether it's the baby floating inside her womb, the mark of heroism revealed by her stump, or her long child-bearing life, Stumpy seems to mean something to all who connect to her. There were times during my visit to Dan's studio when my group had tears in our eyes. We are not alone, says Lisa Gatens — she's finding that same connection already among the workers in this new museum wing. Who knows what inspiration will result from Stumpy's second life inside a museum, detailing what we know of her story from the very bones that are hanging — the severed rostrum, the cross-sectioned jaw, the bone spurs — as well as the methods used to study living whales? the museum opening was a twenty-four hour affair. Lisa says she spent six hours of it standing beneath Stumpy, stopping people, saying, "You need to know about this whale. You need to know about her life. She is important!" All photos by Keith Rittmaster of the North Carolina Maritime Museum.
The Kingfisher Short fiction by lucy Atkins '12, illustration by Jordan Chalfant '12
faint blush tinges the undersides of the clouds through the spruce trees. With each recovery, a cluster of drips from his paddle spreads into the glassy surface; with each pull, whirlpools thick as his thumb twist in front of the blade momentarily before disappearing. in this curved shell, he glides. So thin yet strong. the combination of canvas and cedar never fails to amaze him. even paddling solo she's handling nicely â€” the empty bow slaps a little against the water, but the curved sides are balanced. Just enough creaking to remind him that she's made out of trees. Another one set afloat for the first time, another winter tacked and 12
glued together into this finished whole, streamlined and seaworthy. Maybe this is what it's like to experience a child growing up. A black-throated green calls from the shore. that one always gets stuck in his head â€” see see see I'm green! Another calls in response. Winter lingered and spring had a slow start this year, but now the warblers are finally back. Blackburnian, yellow, chestnutsided, parulas, and these black-throated greens dashing between the spruce boughs this morning. Such welcome colors after winter when the only bright is the tiny splash of red on the woodpeckers' heads. these migrants are strangely bold, letting him get within College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
a yard or so, posing and cocking their heads as he snaps away. As he paddles slowly along the shore, the buzzing voice fades, replaced by the striking song of the yellow warbler. Sweet-sweet-sweet, I'mso-sweet! As he drifts, he breathes in deeply, catching tendrils of mixing aromas in his nostrils. the wet dirt smell of spring is the first to sharpen his senses after winter; noticing this nuanced, multilayered fragrance, he knows summer is coming. he wishes there were words to communicate smells — they catch in the net of his memory for an instant as they blow past, before fading completely out of grasp. he aches to somehow hold onto these memories, some of which aren't even his, but stem from books or stories — like the flowery sweetness drifting over this lake that reminds him of humid southern nights on wraparound porches, wicker swings he's never lazed on. Dusty warmth radiates from the large boulders along the shore — he wants to bask on one and then jump in, splashing — and the shiny, clean smell of the varnished canoe and the liquid freshness of water mingles with his skin. We can photograph and paint the world we see, but why can't we inhale these fragrances and exhale our own creative blends based on our mood? this evening he would breathe out pure, sweet cedar, spiced with a touch of acid green from the new spruce tips. And there's something about being on the lake after a whole winter on land, a whole winter working this boat with his hands and waiting to work the water with his paddle. Why is it only now that he's getting out? All the excuses lose their meaning. his muscles fall easily into the motions — abdominals twisting back and forth, frame steady, wrists curling fluidly for the quick J at the end of each stroke. his thumb brushes against the silky gunwale. good — skin on wood. he smiles. What a scene for a new boat — coming on sunset over the flat, flat water, hermit thrush descants rippling through the woods. he paddles without effort, feeling like he could go at this pace for a long time. he hangs on the pause of silence with himself — so different from the coming months guiding and working at camp. College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
Rounding the point he can just see a figure on the far shore through the fading light. it is later than he realized. Back in town M will be expecting him soon for dinner, to chatter about her day and kiss him with wine-stained lips. Might as well get this over with. he realizes he's calmer than he expected. Picking up the pace of his strokes, he digs deeper into the velvet surface of the water. As he gets closer, the figure takes form and her familiar features come into view. her hair is loose and pulled over one shoulder, bright against her brown flannel shirt. She's wearing a red skirt that ripples around her calves. With her toe she nudges rocks on the pebbly beach, bends, pauses. Crouching, she skims a flat one across the water — five-sixseven-eight-nine-ten. Pretty good. the rings expand and run into each other before slowly vanishing. he crosses the fading trail, leaving a tiny wake and his own string of droplets. She looks up from her scuffing and pacing. Arcs her arm out. he tips the blade of his paddle in her direction, nodding. Somehow calling out would break the stillness. And his throat is gruff. he eases up for the last few strokes. gravel crunches from the road and another figure appears through the trees. he concentrates on making his strokes fluid but does not pull much water, prolonging these last few moments afloat and separate from them. the man scurries down the beach. "Sorry i'm late," he hears the man say, kissing V on the cheek. his hand winds round her waist. "Congratulations," he eases the bow partway up the beach, telling himself to smile. V's eyes are huge. She stands, hands dangling, mouth opening. "When — wait... — when you said a surprise — i had no idea —" she stammers. noticing him again, she jumps to grab the upturned triangle to stabilize the boat, "Sorry —" sliding her hands along the bright wood. "My gosh — gorgeous," she breathes, looking up at him. She sighs, shakes her head. "i just can't believe it."
"And what might be the name of this shiny beauty?" D wants to know. "i haven't named it yet." he climbs out onto the beach. "nothing seemed right."
The harsh rattle of a kingfisher punctuates the air, and the three of them look up to see the dark shape cutting low over the water through the dusk. The harsh rattle of a kingfisher punctuates the air, and the three of them look up to see the dark shape cutting low over the water through the dusk. V strokes the gunwales, still looking dumbstruck. She turns to D. "What about Kingfisher?" she asks in a low voice. "Seems appropriate for a blue vessel," D agrees. they let the name hang in the air for a moment. it doesn't make him immediately cringe like so many first attempts at names. he nods slowly. "Kingfisher it is," he says. "i'll swing by and paint the lettering tomorrow."
fter loading the canoe onto her toyota wagon, he congratulates them again. this time the words slide out easier and he doesn't have to tell himself to smile. he bends into his own car. Without the blue boat strapped to the top he feels like he's missing something. But now there's space for his own canoe. he thinks for a moment about where he'll be in a few days — riding waves on the George with old friends, loaded down with all the food and gear they'll need for three weeks in the wilderness. through the open window a few straggling peepers pierce the still air and another trickle of hermit thrush melody floats past. He inhales the whiffs of the last crabapple blossoms as they mix with the cedar dust on his wool shirt, and blows out a slow trickle — sunsoaked skin on open water, afternoon thunderstorms, dense spruce forests. Back at the shop, the paddle he'll use on the George is waiting for its final coat of varnish.
By Katharine Macko, Sustainable Business Program Administrator Photograph by Ben Macko '01
When It Rains It Pours
Your eyes tasted salty
What if my mouth and throat
When I kissed them,
Were lined with moss
Your pathos crystalized on my lips
And you could look
And I wanted to kiss them again.
Way down in
I want to carry away your sorrows by the teaspoon
And see ferns
To cleanse whatever wounds are buried deep,
Growing far below
To hold the salted memories you reluctantly share. There are, I have heard, salt mines beneath us With drifts of the stuff piled stories high. But this reservoir is private And it would not be wise to trespass. Instead I will stay here at the surface With my hands full of teaspoons And wait for you.
January Moss For now, the ice has relaxed its grip on the ground Revealing an unfathomable moss. These mid-winter thaws always make me ache Like a lover who loves it all too much Though she knows her heart will be broken Once the cold comes back. And yet, seeing moss in winter I want to twine myself around this life like a vine Hug it until my arms get tired Whisper I love you I love you I love you Whisper that after the thaw, Feeling is what comes rushing back.
College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
Family Involvement, Year After Year: Roc and helen '80 Caivano By Donna gold
he early 1970s was not a time to walk the straight and narrow, even for an architect. Roc Caivano had just gotten his degree from Yale University; but instead of completing his license, he went on the road: "it was a time when people drifted around the country looking for new meaning and reinventing why we do things," says Roc. "We were a happy, vagabond tribe" — only this tribe was focused on environmental design, including building a Maine home for William Sloane Coffin in Muscongus Bay. helen, his young wife, was their business manager. "She made it all work," says Roc. Just as Roc and helen were considering settling down, Roc saw a notice in the New York Times. A tiny, environmentally focused college in Bar harbor was looking for someone to teach architecture. At the interview, Roc found that his bedside reading — ian Mcharg, the Whole Earth Catalog, Aldo leopold — were books being taught at CoA. he showed an animated film featuring pollution-emitting vehicles eating up the smaller creatures of the universe. he was hired. "We were blown away by the place," Roc says. "there were some very bright teachers, some very courageous — and some confused — students, and an amazing bunch of trustees who were pretty powerful people in the larger world." helen remembers a fundraiser held at the home of founding trustee elizabeth (Betty) thorndike. it was one of those blessed gatherings of music, conversation, and beauty. helen's parents were visiting and her father, JR Mcgreggor, was so charmed he wrote a check. Right away, he received a note of thanks. he kept giving. Both the Caivanos and the Mcgreggors are on CoA's year-after-year donor list. College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
Roc and Helen '80 Caivano with Kate in the baby carrier. Photo courtesy of the Caivanos.
But environmental design "literally was not in the vocabulary of the time," says Roc. "COA defined it," adds Helen. Roc's curriculum offered guidelines that foreshadowed those required for leadership in energy and environmental Design, or LEED certification: "energy efficiency, healthy materials, air quality, recycled and locally harvested materials. There was no such thing as certification then; this was coming from students and other faculty at CoA." each spring, Roc's advanced students, having learned "how to think in an environmentally thoughtful way," designed a building; come fall, a new crop of students built it. the pottery studio — formerly a greenhouse — is one of those structures. Meanwhile, helen was getting a CoA degree and raising Kate — the first child born at CoA. "everyone was invested in her," says helen. one memorable All College Meeting, toddler Kate wandered off from her parents. Says Roc, "she tripped and fell and started crying. We
couldn't get to her, but the students in the front row passed her over their heads, diagonally across the whole auditorium to us. She was bawling when the first students picked her up and beaming by the time she got to us." Kate, administrator of CoA's Sustainable Business Program is married to Ben Macko '01, and their daughter Juniper is COA's first third-generation child. helen graduated in 1980, having created a literary and art magazine, Voices of the Atlantic, for her senior project. then they left so Roc could obtain his license by apprenticing with architect Robert Venturi. When they returned to practice in Bar harbor, Roc designed the Blair/tyson student residence, an environmental milestone in its time. helen joined the alumni board, taking pride in how varied and committed the alumni are. With helen nodding in agreement, Roc concludes. "i love CoA and will forever. there's something good about it and always has been." 15
Willowind Therapeutic Riding Center Story and photograph by Julia De Santis '12 Over the years, Willowind has served many. There have been stroke victims, children with Down's syndrome, others with sensory integration and attention deficit disorders, or general learning disabilities, teens at risk, and people with autism and cerebral palsy, to name a few. Riders establish relationships with the horses that can lead to increased self-confidence and personal growth, and the farm is designed to be a safe place full of love and encouragement for riders to take risks and build skills: social, emotional, and physical. "Was there ever a point you weren't sure you could keep going?" I ask owner David Folger '81. Laughing, he answers, "Every day when I wake up and realize I have to take care of eight horses!" And then more seriously, "I am married to it. I raised three kids doing it. Doing thisâ€‰â€Śâ€‰you don't get a break or a vacation. There isn't much money in it; it's a choice of lifestyle, and a busy one." Willowind is supported in part by private benefactors, "fairy godparents who assist tremendously," but funding is an issue. Still, from the beginning, Willowind has been a community effort. "When we put up the first barn, we organized it in the tradition of an old-time barn raising, Shakerstyle. Every one of my local COA friends came out, and their families were banging nails right alongside their neighbors. We put that barn up in a week, and it was quite a scene, everyone lifting to raise the walls." 16
College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
COA & MDI it takes an island to nurture a College & a College to nurture an island introduction by Donna gold
y now, many of us know CoA's creation myth, how years after they were Bar harbor high School football teammates, father Jim gower ran into businessman les Brewer on Cottage Street and said, "i'd like to do something to help this island." immediately, les responded: "let's start a college."
Concern and action: CoA's DnA. A problem exists, what do we need to know to resolve it? And what are the implications of these possible solutions? four decades ago, the issue was the island economy; CoA was the answer. two decades ago, CoA folks wondered whether the peregrine, extinct in the northeast, could be reintroduced to Acadia national Park. if so, what would be the impact on nearby seabirds? What about park trails? CoA students and faculty raised the questions and then supplied the information that determined the best way forward. More recently, hannaford sought to build a larger supermarket in the center of the island. What would that look like? Using both GIS and planning savvy, COA students, staff, and faculty offered images to help the community decide. human ecology in action. Could father Jim and les Brewer have imagined such a fertile connection between island and college? Did they know a college would also mean alumni launching restaurants, or working in the Jackson laboratory? For forty years, Mount Desert Island has offered its park and ocean and intertidal zones, its scientific laboratories, its mentors â€” whether they be lobstermen, potters, teachers, poets, landscapers, plumbers, or scholars â€” its museums, restaurants, stores, even its tourists to CoA students. this island has been so welcoming that many of our alumni have remained. in return, the CoA community has seeded the island with architects, art exhibits, builders, designers, gardeners, lectures, mentors, movies, musicians, naturalists, plays, produce, puppeteers, restaurants, teachers, and more. So much, in fact, that the following pages barely scratch the surface of this intricate dance between island and college. College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
Planning Our Places: the human ecology of land Use Story and illustration by Michael Griffith '09
n the last day of winter it was already mild in Mt. Desert island's Salisbury Cove where i had come to experience village atmosphere, abandoning my car near the community's tiny post office. It didn't take long to walk the place, of course, or to understand its charms. Beyond the post office were clapboard cottages, a simple church, and a quietly repurposed one-room schoolhouse. frenchman Bay lapped around the edge of every view. Looping back to the post office, I asked an attendant â€” only one would fit behind the service window â€” about the building's age. "it must be from the sixties or seventies," she said, smiling patiently down the tunnel of another season, which doubtless held in store
many such questions. "The post office boxes are from earlier, though â€” probably about a hundred years ago. originally they were in the general store." i leaned back from the formica counter to see the beautiful, cast mailboxes lodged rather ruthlessly in a wall of fake wood paneling. next door, the old general store had not fared much better. "it's two apartments now," said the attendant. "Kind of sad." Still, like all the older buildings in Salisbury Cove, it was set near the road, and no matter the material, or contemporary use, it related well to its surroundings. Built before the advent of air conditioning, electricity, and probably the automobile, how could it not?
After the Second World War, America's cities and towns sprawled and its villages all but disappeared. for a country drunk on victory, rich in land, and long enamored of progress, expansive, autoreliant suburbs were irresistible: grass, glass, and gasoline. the strange, squat houses unveiled in levittown, new York, in 1949 were an even more decisive rejection of history and urbanity. the optimistic "ranch house" offered a modern open plan and the illusion of space. every quarter-acre plot of land was to become a ranch, every yard a private realm of sloping lawns, and every horizon a frontier. By the late sixties this frontier looked like a mirage, but as early as 1961 Jane Jacobs had published The Death and College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
swelling cities. "Society seemed blighted," said Joanne Carpenter, faculty member emerita, in her 2008 commencement speech, "and many of us longed to begin anew away from urban centers." Big, abstract thinking had created urban blight; it was time to return to nature, like the transcendentalists had, to rediscover what it meant to be human. Following Thoreau, "the first generation of the college was interested in environmental design focused on domestic architecture," says Rich Borden, faculty member in psychology. "We were intrigued by the possibility of building a solar home at this latitude." they made that possibility a reality. "Dick Davis, COA's first philosopher," continues Rich, "built the first solar home in Maine to get a conventional mortgage." the college also began holding workshops on solar energy and gardening, sharing the knowledge and skills it would take to "begin anew." As these techniques became increasingly common, perspectives evolved. According to Rich, "there was a shift in scope from the individual family unit or group to a broader sense of community."
Life of Great American Cities, a stunning critique of modernist planning policies, and Richard Yates had thoroughly debunked the myth of suburban happiness in his novel Revolutionary Road. the verdict was in: urban "towers in parks" and suburban property setbacks alienated people from each other, even destroyed once-thriving communities. one decade of poor planning, however, expressing itself in a metastasizing built environment and politically charged municipal policies, takes many decades to undo — and sometimes leads to intractable changes, and losses. in the early seventies, at the newly established College of the Atlantic, urbanites sought refuge from rapidly College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
oon advances in technology, ideas about community planning, and circumstance caught up with one another. in 1987, John Anderson was hired by the college as a faculty member in environmental sciences. only a year before, he had used geographic information Systems (giS) technology to map population distributions of white pelicans for his doctoral dissertation at the University of Rhode island. giS mapping allows scientists, designers, and planners to digitize geographical data on layered maps that have the power to tell complex stories about the land and its populations. layers can be isolated or combined to help users analyze, manipulate, and display information on everything from topography to tax jurisdiction. With giS you can underlay a map with geological data or overlay it with the locations of wetlands, property lines, waste collection routes, zoning ordinances, and so on, until a complex ecology reveals itself.
John's experience told him that the technology had real interdisciplinary potential — perfect for CoA. John wrote a national Science Foundation grant and, "we were off to the races." What would a human ecological giS lab look like? in 1991 the Center for Applied human ecology was formed and "gave us an umbrella for bridging between the curriculum and a more project-based community involvement," says Rich. "CAhe really allowed us to merge ecology, planning, and policy in our thinking and to expand the curriculum to include areas like planning and policy in a very intentional way," better equipping students and faculty to engage real world problems. they began with Mount Desert island. in the eighties there were US geological Survey and US Soil Conservation maps of MDi, but these were drawn to different scales and did not incorporate information from the island's four towns — whose zoning maps and plot maps were drawn to still different scales. Creating a unified map of the island and its towns would have been an enormous — and enormously tedious — job; nobody was doing it. "the maps could not be physically combined," says isabel Mancinelli, a planner for the park service at the time. But at CoA's new giS lab, Kurt Jacobsen '90 and gordon longsworth '91 began digitizing maps of the island's four towns. "island-wide planning was the phrase we used," says gordon, who is now head of the lab. "it was a way we were trying to shift people's thinking to look at the island as a whole, to break down the town line barriers. Watersheds cross these boundaries, and so do wildlife, and there are island-wide issues like solid waste and recycling, where if towns partnered up, there were savings." "That's the first time that COA provided something really concrete to the towns," says terry Kelley, executive director of the Mount Desert island housing trust. "it generated a lot of good will. People saw that COA offers a very good education; students were doing something the towns wouldn't have 19
True to their village setting, older buildings on Salisbury Cove's Old Bar Harbor Road relate to the street â€” and each other. Sprawl-type development pushes buildings away from property boundaries, increasing privacy at the expense of community.
been able to do on their own. So we said, 'there's a lot of brainpower there.'" in 1991, CoA partnered with MDi tomorrow to publish a Bar Harbor Times special supplement, "MDi tomorrow: A look at the future of Mount Desert island." included was a buildout analysis of the entire island. A "buildout" is a step in the land use planning process that estimates the amount and location of potential development for a given area. in the absence of conservation easements, zoning ordinances usually determine what the land can hold. A culmination of years spent digitizing maps, the buildout marked a shift in the land use planning process on the island. It was the first time the public had seen a composite map of the island â€” including lot lines, zoning, and soils. the new view of the land was startling; more than 13,800 sprawl-style lots could be created under existing regulations. "We put together all the parcels," says gordon. "Part of the holistic island mapping effort included showing buildout by density, and that was published to show 20
people the potential of our zoning. it really kicked people into gear to get more serious about the comprehensive planning effort." over the next few years, through a series of grants from the fund for improvement of Post Secondary education (fiPSe), a program of the US Department of education, CAhe recruited first Isabel, by then faculty member in planning and landscape architecture, and later gordon, who had completed his graduate work in planning at the University of Pennsylvania. Influential planner and Design with Nature author ian Mcharg, who received an honorary MPhil in 1998, visited from Penn and gave the interdisciplinary lab his stamp of approval. Momentum increased. After hearing about a project she had done in graduate school, students in Isabel's first Land Use Planning course asked if they could do a buildout of the island's Route 3 corridor. "the town was feeling like it was pretty well protected with the current zoning," says isabel. "But the students were
curious about what could be developed. We not only looked at the maximum buildout for the corridor, but also what types of buildings you could build." the group found that developers could put just about anything they wanted along the corridor to Acadia national Park. the Bar harbor town council "was quite appalled at the results of the Route 3 buildout," according to isabel, "and realized there were a lot of gaps and holes in their zoning they weren't aware of." Says gordon, "Planning is founded on good information. We can play out scenarios â€” we can say, 'Well what if this happens? What are the consequences?'" he stresses that CoA's role has been to "provide people who live in and know the area with the best information." Planning is largely about common sense, according to gordon, and mistakes are made when people don't have the information they need to visualize or imagine the effects of a proposed change. isabel agrees: "our rule has been to provide decision-makers with more information so they can make College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
informed decisions. We aren't pushing them to go one way or the other; we're just providing good information." Projects like this are an invaluable service for communities without the resources to invest in full-time planners or giS technology. individuals without access to expensive design and planning services also benefit. The Route 3 presentation, says isabel, "eventually resulted in alternative development plans and a series of conservation easements" on several properties. those plans exchanged sprawl-type housing for cluster housing. this preserves open land and reduces energy and material expenditure by placing residential units in neighborly clusters, such as CoA's sustainable student housing complex, the Kathryn W. Davis Student Residence Village. "The work CoA did with clustering was very influential," says Terry Kelley. When the Maine Coast heritage trust and the Mount Desert island housing Authority teamed up to conserve and selectively develop affordable housing on Bar harbor's northeast Creek, they looked to COA's Davis Village for inspiration. It suited the context of the land and the residents. Another group of land Use Planning students found that in the zoning for the fertile strip of soil along the Crooked Road, the island's "bread basket," agriculture was not listed as a permitted use. they were investigating the status of the fogg farm at the request of its owner. "it had been a dairy farm," isabel says, "but it had lain fallow for more than a year and could not be used as a farm anymore — farming was only a 'grandfathered' permitted use!" "We went to the planning board and showed them what was going on and pointed out the error in their zoning ordinance. they asked us to take it to the town council, and to look town-wide to see if that same situation occurred in other places. the students found three other zones where there were prime agricultural soils," but farming was not allowed. "existing farms could remain, but if they lay fallow for a year College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
they would have to be subdivided, or developed." Members of isabel's class worked with the town council to change the zoning ordinances. the changes, which protected the island's farmlands from development, passed a town vote. Sometimes information is uncontroversial; it can easily lead to changes. At other times the information can be difficult to swallow. In commercial development, short-term gains are emphasized over the long-term losses of ecosystems, viewsheds, and local economies. But, says Gordon, "As ecological planners, we're committed to looking at different time-scales."
when the proposal was made, they were already working with town hill on a "mini-plan" for its village-like center. "they really got that project going," says Anne Krieg, former planning and development director for the island, "because they did a whole bunch of data sets — demographics, natural resource work, land use analysis. they did a whole layer of background data and then presented it to the residents in the area. We had a couple of workshops where they came and were able to present and get feedback … it made the project a lot more approachable."
"Does it make sense in the long term?" isabel elaborates. "Most development is done in the reactionary mode — you know, 'that corporation will give me how much for my land?' But how does a big box retailer change the whole dynamic of a town like Bar Harbor? You really have to try and figure out what the unforeseen consequences might be of something before you embark on making a big change."
tudents created a series of maps that detailed the locations of wetlands, existing land uses, and the densities of prior development in town hill. then they conducted a visual impact analysis of proposed changes to the town's zoning ordinances, showing what the town would look like if instead of a supermarket, a more village-like atmosphere were sought, with setbacks moved closer to the roads and building heights lowered.
it is not in the interest of developers to consider consequences. When Bar harbor's hannaford grocery store — owned by a Belgian corporation — proposed to move to rural town hill, isabel's students were once again ready with maps and imagination. in fact,
When the Belgian corporation called a public meeting at MDi high School to discuss its proposal, says isabel, "People were asking them how big the new grocery store was going to be, and what it would look like. they said, 'Well, we have no real site plans yet, so we can't
The source of this topographic shaded relief model of the Route 3 corridor from Salisbury Cove to beyond Bar Harbor is LiDAR, which stands for Light Detection and Ranging. The detailed topographic data shown here is collected from an aircraft using laser beam measurements of the ground surface. over this layer is placed a land cover dataset derived from satellite imagery, showing numerous classes of land use and land cover types. the red area is the town of Bar Harbor, the brownish area north of town — designated as "developed, open space" — is College of the Atlantic, with Duck Brook a bit beyond. Courtesy of gordon longsworth '91.
once again, students used giS and graphic design software to show residents what their village might look like under revised zoning ordinances. in the initial buildout for the Salisbury Cove mini-plan, says Anne, "they dropped a large building into the area to see what that would look like." it dwarfed the rest of the community. in a buildout based on zoning that protects village character, a modest building hugs the street. it looks right at home.
Town Hill Market, Mount Desert, owned by Richard Simis '88 and Lilea (Stockwell) Simis '90.
show you anything.' So we said, 'Well, we can show you.'" Andrew louw '10 unveiled graphics of what the proposed grocery store might look like. Based on the existing zoning ordinances, it could have dominated the viewshed over highway 102. Residents of town hill "didn't mind commercial development," says Anne, "but most didn't want anything huge. they were building a playground down the road!" the corporation was not interested in negotiating changes; it was only trying to capture traffic headed offisland. it decided to keep its store in Bar harbor. "A lot of the students stayed with the project after their course ended," says Anne. "they attended meetings and made sure to stay informed, which i thought was really impressive because they didn't have to do that, but they did." true human ecologists, they understood that land use planning is about more than policy. it is, as Anne says, "deciding how you want to see your community grow." Before air conditioning, electricity, and automobiles, the growth of human communities was governed by considerations of distance, temperature, 22
and the elements. in Across the Open Field, American landscape architect Laurie Olin reflects on the beauty of southern England's human-made environment of hedges, meadows, and parks.
The Salisbury Cove mini-plan was voted down by Bar harbor residents, who might not have understood the value of protecting the village's character. Much work remains. in Salisbury Cove it is still illegal to situate a building near the street, though that's where the community's old general store and post office sit. This may be disappointing, but it's not the end of the story. According to gordon, the planner's job is not to change minds, it is to provide maps and plans that represent reality and possible futures. "to me that is the human ecology of planning," he says. "ecological planners should be able to see all sides of an issue: the environmentalist's point of view, the developer's point of view. … We should try to bring people together, to be dynamic and understand why people feel the way they do."
his travels taught him that "things can change without getting worse. layers of new structure and use can be overlaid upon earlier ones to produce a greater complexity and richer environment. At the same time, some changes can wreck the whole fabric and destroy centuries of incremental improvements. Sorting out which is which People saw that COA offers a and how much is critical or provides what might be very good education; students seen as a tipping point may were doing something the towns depend upon scale or the wouldn't have been able to do degree of finesse or craft with which something is done."
on their own.
today, "sorting out which are terry Kelley, executive director of MDi housing trust which and how much" is the challenge facing every human community, including Salisbury Cove. there is always hope in understanding, During the community's recent planning which means there is hope yet for the process, isabel's students "engaged in future of places like Salisbury Cove. workshops — visioning sessions — with gordon's words are a reminder that residents," says Anne. "it was a good even in an era of grass, glass, and experience for the residents, i think, gasoline a human plan can be a hope, because it was local students working and a human ecological plan the best hope we have. with them, not big suits from Portland." College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
The Human Ecology of Education: CoA and the MDi school system Clearly, a school concerned with improving how education happens will generate students interested in innovative educational approaches. COA students have been connecting to local youth and the Mount Desert Island school system since the beginning. In 1987, COA began its Educational Studies program under the direction of Peter Corcoran. His leadership passed on to Etta Kralovec (then Mooser). For a while Ken Hill, our academic dean, ran it, then Judith Cox, and now it has passed on to Bonnie Tai, with Linda Fuller assisting. While not all students in the Ed Studies program become teachers, and not all alumni teachers on the island received their certification through COA, you can be sure that Ed Studies students are connecting with learners throughout MDI — right from the start of their studies in education. The following comments reflect just a few perspectives on the connection between COA and the MDI school system. Bonnie Tai talked with Julia De Santis '12; the other educators spoke with Michael Griffith '09. Photos, courtesy of Ben Macko '01, are of Conners Emerson Elementary School, above, and Ben in his classroom on the following page.
Bonnie Tai faculty Member in educational and human Studies, CoA the greatest strength of CoA's education program is that our students apprentice with teachers in classrooms, or with educators in local museums, or at Acadia national Park as early as the first education class that they take. The majority of our students are not planning to be state-certified classroom teachers. Because of this, classroom discussions include very diverse perspectives and interests. For example, students in intercultural education this past winter included those working on global College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
health, labor advocacy, and sustainable food systems. our students have been really creative in connecting Maine curriculum standards with their own interests. Last term, a group of three students — one from the Philippines, one who will be a certified secondary english language arts teacher, and another who will be certified in secondary social studies — connected the occupy movement and the Civics/government learning Results by having kids think about ways to communicate with the government and about protest as a means of communication. In Experiential education, students work with on- and
off-campus community organizations — such as Willowind, Beech hill farm, Dorr Museum, and the YMCA — to observe and offer a range of experiential learning opportunities to local school-aged kids. Beyond coursework, students take on creative senior projects that bridge schools and the college, such as natural History Explorations, two week-long outdoor day camps that lucy Atkins '12 ran, featured in the Bangor Daily News. Building strong relationships with the local school district and other educationfocused organizations is valuable; it offers our students experience with practitioners; it's also an opportunity 23
"i'm not sure how to qualify a 'coa perspective,' but my methods courses definitely shaped my teaching practice and I always want students to see the broader view. … I want my students to think about things for themselves, to discover the underlying patterns of math by asking questions." – Ben Macko '01
for local educators — including CoA alumni — to continue to learn and grow. As some local educators have told us, CoA education students often ask really great questions that cause them to reflect on something they may no longer notice about their teaching practice. We have an annual appreciation event for our local school and community partners, and it's very well attended, i think in part because teachers are generally so under-appreciated. We, as teachers of education, appreciate school teacher's generous contributions of time and professional insights. We also deeply appreciate our students, who are strongly motivated not only to integrate mind and body, the personal with the academic, and humans with their environments, but also to make connections between self and other, theory and practice, and of course school and community.
Joanne Harriman Assistant Superintendent Mount Desert island Regional School System CoA has had a positive impact in our schools and our district. it's our district's culture to emphasize the importance of connecting our young people to this amazing place where we're geographically situated. to have a college nearby that shares the same beliefs about stewardship is really a gift. Over the years several COA faculty and students have participated 24
in our MDi Regional School System (MDiRSS) Service-learning leadership team. these folks have made great contributions; they've helped our schools stay connected with events and ideas that the college is bringing to the fore. So there are good partnerships and we're cross-fertilizing. Right now linda fuller (CoA's associate director of educational studies) is a member of our teacher certification committee, where she gets to hear about our teachers' professional development plans. And the college has shown a continued desire to provide meaningful learning opportunities for local teachers through summer programs and seminars. there are also many student teachers from CoA who are paired with our teachers over the course of any given year. in addition to their work in the classroom, they attend our common study groups and professional development activities; they're always ready to participate and very enthusiastic. it's great that we're here for each other.
micHael Zboray '95 Assistant Principal Conners emerson School, Bar harbor When i went to CoA i didn't have education in mind. My interests were more around forestry and science, but with a sort of wait and see approach. … It was really through classes with Etta (Mooser) Kralovec, Don Meiklejohn [late
faculty member in political science], and Craig greene [late faculty member in botany], that i got excited about teaching, started to explore some of the education classes, and really got interested in social studies, political science, and US history. i took every single course i could possibly take from Don … that just sort of drove my interest — and then there were conversations: "have you ever thought about teaching?" — and it took off from there. At the time my focus was on high school social studies, because i was really driven by the questions of international studies and history. As soon as i could start working in the schools i did. etta presented the idea of working with her in a high school philosophy class, and that was a great experience. ed Studies students had a lot of opportunities to go out and see other schools, from southern Maine to new York City. that drove everybody's interest in pedagogy and education. that "life-long learner" spirit is something i see in the teachers CoA has trained. We just conducted the final review of a student teacher, and even though she was through with her student teaching, she wanted to continue to work at her school. She didn't want her experience to end, and that initiative typifies what I think the program is about — and reflects the culture of the college. there's a strong desire to really go out in the world. these student teachers go beyond the College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
fifteen weeks … [they] want to maintain that connection and that experience, and they want to learn more. You definitely see that in the way professional teachers from COA interact with their own learning, and also their kids' learning. You see it in their openness to trying new things, being flexible — all those pieces, you see that in them, and it relates back to their professional capacity. … I think part of the Ed Studies program is a little more scripted than what your normal COA track would be — you're sort of shifted into gear, and you have more requirements than most COA folks. But for someone who's interested in COA, to be able to make that shift, it just says something about their desire and their strong interest in teaching — that they're going to have to forego some of the COA experience of freedom to go in that direction. It says something about the individual as a learner and their commitment to education.
Ben Macko '01 Eighth-Grade Math Teacher Conners Emerson School, Bar Harbor Before I came to COA I had been doing outdoor education in New Jersey, working with kids and really just playing — telling stories about the life cycles of monarchs, exploring the natural world, learning and teaching. COA became an extension of that. I liked the focus of the Ed Studies curriculum, which asked me to apply the things I was thinking about within a specific area of thought and prepared me to be a teacher in a relatively short time. Sometimes I envied my friends who were able to take more varied classes, or what I called "fun" classes — art classes, that kind of thing. In the end, funnily enough, three of my good friends who had been taking all those "fun" classes went back to school to become teachers. I was already set to teach when I graduated from COA. I did my student teaching in a fourthgrade classroom at Conners Emerson, which was great, and before I got my job here I was substitute teaching throughout the system, which allowed me to take on more responsibility. College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
Some of the professors' children were passing through then, and it was really interesting to teach them — to teach kids whose parents had taught me — and deepen ties in the community. This is a small place, and even though I'm working in a public system, which means there are certain limitations in terms of [teaching to] standards, I am pretty free to bring a different kind of perspective into my classroom. I can incorporate current events into lessons, encourage students to make up their own projects, and help them ask critical questions like, 'Why am I being taught this? Why do I have to learn this?' I'm not sure how to qualify a "COA perspective," but my methods courses definitely shaped my teaching practice and I always want students to see the broader view. I can tell them very specifically how they might use algebra someday, but I want them to think about things for themselves, to discover the
with other teachers who are working on energy projects and data analysis in their classrooms. About a dozen elementary teachers from the area spent a week with Anna and Dave at COA learning about sustainable energy — figuring out how it all works through hands-on lab activities. I was able to incorporate these lessons into my classroom this year and make real-world connections between math, science, and data analysis. Anna has actually hooked up a monitor to our computer lab, so we can watch how much energy we're using and if there are any red flags. The kids are watching the data to see what's going on and using this information to help make energy use decisions in our own school. I've worked with several COA students in the last few years on service learning projects in my classroom. Two of the projects we worked on were creating a "clean air zone" in front of the school
That "life-long learner" spirit is something I see in the teachers COA has trained. We just conducted the final review of a student teacher, and even though she was through with her student teaching, she wanted to continue to work at her school … that initiative reflects the culture of the college. Michael Zboray '95
underlying patterns of math by asking questions. So that's what we do. It's important to be able to look up, to look outside, and have that sense of wonder. We live in an amazing place, and math is all around us.
Bonnie Burne Middle School Science Teacher Pemetic Elementary School, SW Harbor Recently I worked with [COA lecturer in physics] Anna Demeo and Dave Feldman [faculty member in physics and math] to help connect COA with elementary teachers. We talked about what teachers need and possibly would want in a sustainable energy workshop that would focus on teaching elementary students. Anna and Dave designed and held a great workshop last summer that offered a venue for area teachers to collaborate
and increasing recycling in our school and community. This year my students launched a community energy challenge and created a school energy calendar. It's so nice to have students from COA join us; it's a great connection to have within our community. My students look up to the college students; they are much closer to their age than I am! They're all young people who want to be teachers, so they really love the kids — which I love. COA students are wonderful about communicating with me; they really do a fantastic job. It's a great opportunity to have my students work with members of the community to discover and investigate problems, and then collaborate and work together to help develop solutions to these problems. I'm thankful to be able to work with them. 25
Sweet Pea Farm Drennan Woodworking Bar Harbor Community Farm Peggy Rockefeller Farms
Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory
Four Foot Farm
Frenchman Bay Partners
Acadia Farmers' Market
Little Red Hen Baked Goods
Town Hill Market Willowind Theraputic Riding Center Peacock Builders
Tammy Packie Photography Kozak Stonework
The Protectorate â€” Cox Land
Davis Stone and Garden Alana Beard Personal Cook
Maine Coast Heritage Trust Architecture Robert Collins Terry Lee Good Custom Woodwork
Heather Murray Jewelry
Clark Stivers General Construction
Steve Demers Drafting & Design The Jackson Laboratory
Mount Desert Island High School
Somes Pond Center
Wild Gardens of Acadia
Somes-Meynell Wildlife Sanctuary Acadia National Park
New Yankee Builders Beech Hill Farm
Burning Tree Restaurant
Seal Cove Auto Museum
Pamela Parvin Counseling Services Mount Desert Elementary School Jessie Greenbaum, LMT
Andrew Moulton Yoga Asticou Azalea Garden
Heart Craft Calligraphy Whales & Nails
Pemetic Elementary School Wendell Gilley Museum
COA & MDI Conservation, education, food, art, and more. Yes, COA and COA alumni have enriched life on Mount Desert Island, as reflected in this map. Highlighted here are some of the visible influences COA has had on the community: COA partnerships with island schools, museums, scientific institutions, and other nonprofits (including the public locales right on campus), as well as the many alumni artists, business owners, farmers, performers, and restaurateurs who have made MDI their home.
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Allied Whale Ethel H. Blum Gallery Center for Applied Human Ecology Community Garden George B. Dorr Museum Island Research Center Summer Field Studies Thorndike Library On COA CAmpus Acadia Senior College Dive-In Theater with Diver Ed Harborside Shakespeare Co. Maine Sea Grant
Reel Pizza Cinerama Bar Harbor Whale Watch Company
Café This Way
545 & Co.
Bar Harbor Tour Company — Ghost Tours
Courtney Vashro, CMT Bike Revolution Cycle Taxi
Morning Glory Bakery
Yoga @ Cattitude
Bar Harbor Jazz Festival The Natural History Center Rupununi
Conners Emerson School
Destroy Them My Robots Frogtown Mountain Puppeteers
rosebyrd designs Guinness & Porcelli's House Wine Cadillac Family Practice Havana
Noreen Hogan Photography
Gardens By Design
Peter Jeffery Custom Building
Barbara Sassaman Residential Design
█ Construction & Architecture █ Arts & Performance █ Farms & Gardens █ Attractions & Tourism █ Education & Information Technology █ Food & Restaurants █ Health & Fitness █ Science Research & Conservation
If we've overlooked someone or something, let us know so we can update our records. Data: Donna Gold | Design: Danielle Meier '08 | Execution: Danielle Meier & Katie O'Brien '15
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The above images are 40x magnifications of water samples taken from Frenchman Bay in October, 2011 and photographed by Marina Garland '12. Generally, the circular forms are living organisms, the ribbons are plastic filaments. Clockwise from top left: Micro-plastic filament and copepod (a type of zooplankton); two different colors of micro-plastic; micro-plastic with phytoplankton (round diatoms); micro-plastic filament with a phytoplankton (round diatom); another micro-plastic filament and phytoplankton (round diatom).
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Micro-Plastics: Marina Garland '12 studies the doom beneath our waters By Donna Gold
an a name predict a future for a child? Perhaps so. Marina garland was barely walking when her grandparents invited her to share portions of their round-the-world sailing voyage. She returned to a family home located on an island â€” and not the kind reached by bridge or even ferry. She and her family would putt their way home in an open aluminum boat. At CoA, Marina's love of the water led her to seek beneath its surface, discovering to her dismay, the tragedy humans have suspended within its liquidity. it began during during a Sea education Association Semester. for her research project, Marina began tracking plastic pollution, focusing on the massive gyres of trash she describes as "hundreds of miles of plastic soup mixed in with good stuff that you don't want to take out." There are five such gyres on the globe: two in each of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, and one in the indian ocean. As Marina began her research, she started to question beyond the swirl of visible junk. Plastic disintegrates. Colors fade in the sun, parts break off. But plastic never fully biodegrades. What happens when the floating bottles, sneakers, and toys break up? Could the ocean also be sheltering an equivalent amount of tiny plastic bits, what we call micro-plastics? there was no information. "Most micro-plastics," says Marina, "are invisible to the naked eye. You can't sail up and take a picture." less than five millimeters, they're smaller than the height of a barnacle. At sea, Marina began sampling the waters, expecting to find most of the micro-plastics in the gyres. But the farther north she traveled, the more she found. She began to realize that it isn't just boaters and coastal communities that contribute to plastic pollution; it's the entire plasticusing population of the world. But
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why more micro-plastics around new england and maritime Canada? Could it connect to our fisheries, since today's gear is all plastic? When Marina returned to CoA in the fall of 2009, she began looking for local data on micro-plastics, but found nothing. With the help of Chris Petersen, faculty member in biology, she obtained funds from the Maine Space grant Consortium to launch her own study. each time the college's vessel, the Indigo, headed offshore, she'd send along sampling bottles. She also tested frenchman Bay. Ninety-eight percent of her 125 samples had plastic. this is under a dissecting scope, with only a 40-power magnification. With more sophisticated equipment, she suspects she'll find that the microplastics she's currently documenting are only the tip of the iceberg. As "oddly photogenic" as these plastics might be, they will never disappear, says Marina. To filter feeders such as the plankton and krill-like organisms that form the basis of our food chain, the suspended particles mimic food â€” to the creatures' peril. While it's hard to test underwater, "in the lab, it's been shown that plankton can and do eat micro-plastics, and it's often fatal," she says, smiling one of the saddest possible smiles.
are attracted to plastic, and so can concentrate the toxicity a million-fold. Moreover, she adds, "most plastics contain harmful additives, such as BPA and phthalates that are endocrine disruptors, chemicals that mess with hormones in humans and other animals." these toxin-laden plankton are then consumed by larger creatures, and still larger ones. You get the picture. Marina travels with a wooden pack basket; in it she carries, alongside her books, a glass jar for cool liquids and a stainless steel one for tea. When she shops, she places her onions and apples directly inside the supermarket cart. no plastic bags, cups, or backpacks. "even if you recycle or properly dispose of nonrecyclable plastics, she says, there's no telling where they will actually end up." With plastic, she adds, there's only one solution: "if you don't want it in the environment, don't make it in the first place." So what does the water look like to someone who so distressingly plumbs its depths? gazing out at a placid Frenchman Bay, Marina smiles again, not quite as sadly. "the ocean is still beautiful to me," she says. "Mostly this work is motivating. it is extremely depressing, but it's motivating."
And the plastic load keeps increasing, she adds. it used to be that the ratio of macro-plastics to plankton was forty to one in certain Pacific locations. That estimate has increased five-fold in places. these plastics are not only dangerous to larger animals, such as birds, turtles, and marine mammals, they're also the progenitors of microplastics. While we can possibly pluck sneakers and keyboards from the ocean, there is no known way of removing the small stuff. What's worse, says Marina, is that pollutants like PCBs and DDT 29
Conservation Collaborations Reintroducing the Peregrine to Acadia By Donna Gold
In this 1984 photo, a peregrine fledgling flies over the park for the first time in decades. It would take seven more years for a breeding pair to settle on the island. At right, a fledgling perches, having just left its hatching box. At far right, Charlie Todd, a wildlife biologist with the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife is in the right foreground, with Jack Barclay facing him in a 1986 photo. Says Charlie, "We are inside a garage at Acadia to band the young peregrines before transport up to the hack site at Jordan Pond. Most of us were reaching for gloves to protect our hands from their needle-sharp talons, but Jack pulled out a pair of ear plugs instead. The wailing noises of the young falcons inside a closed space was amazing!" Photos courtesy of Acadia National Park.
ome spring, the alert is posted: Acadia national Park's Precipice trail is closed. A thousand feet high, the cliffs have become a nursery, guarding nestlings as celebrated as any new baby: peregrine falcons, once extinct from Maine — and the entire eastern seaboard — are again nesting in Acadia. What also might be a celebration is that COA faculty, students, and alumni are responsible for bringing them back to the island. Until the early 1950s some four hundred peregrine pairs nested east of the Mississippi; Acadia included. In 1965 there were none. The cause? DDTweakened eggshells. Among those lobbying to ban DDT was the late William F. Drury, faculty member in biology and passionate ornithologist. Though not innately an activist, he served on several panels
of the President's Science Advisory Committee under both John F. Kennedy and Richard M. nixon and coauthored the committee's 1963 report "Use of Pesticides." "Bill Drury had brilliant, clear vision, and amazing tenacity to pursue it," says Scott Swann '86, MPhil '93, now a COA lecturer in ecology. Bill wanted to see peregrines — the swiftest birds of all — back in Acadia. Together with students, he convinced the park and the Town of Bar Harbor to link to the Eastern Peregrine Falcon Reintroduction Program. Based at Cornell University, the program bred a select group of falcons in captivity, netting about a hundred chicks each year to reintroduce to carefully chosen sites. The possibility of seeing peregrines soar over Acadia so caught Peter Duley '84 (now a marine mammal observer
at NOAA's Northeast Fisheries Service Center), that he made the reintroduction plan his senior project. Working with Bill and park personnel, he scrutinized former eyries (or nesting sites), and potential new ones. Jordan Cliffs, some five hundred feet above Jordan Pond, offered both a protected spot for the chicks and a great vantage point for the observers. The only drawback was the long, steep climb for the supply crew. Just ask Kyle Jones '82, then a park employee. While the Coast Guard helicoptered in initial supplies, Kyle was charged with carrying frozen feed and buckets of ice to the site. For a good six weeks during the springs of 1984, 1985, and 1986, he would lug up the food for the chicks, as well as for the pair of COA students who spent those weeks observing and daily feeding a pigeonsized hunk of chicken to each of some seven peregrine hatchlings. The goal was
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to feed, observe, and release the birds while remaining absolutely out of sight so that eventually one would imprint on the area and return to breed. that's all. As soon as a pair returned, the program would stop. Peregrines are fierce; one might eat another's chicks. Recalls Scott, "Living up on the cliffs and feeding chickens to the peregrine chicks was one of the great jobs you could have when I was a student." But it required intense, if remote, observation, staring through peepholes day after day. As the guidelines admonished: "Your work will involve long hours of observation, which at times becomes tedious, but your dedication is what will make this project a success." Though Scott was not an official observer, like Kyle he was a frequent visitor. Every week or so he'd take a sixpack up to his friends — Peter, Stephen
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Chidester ('88), David north ('85), and Gwyn Peterdi '85 — fascinated by these rare falcons. Come June, the birds would start flapping, meaning they might soon be ready to fly. On the day the barred front of their box was to open, more students joined the observation force, along with a few park officials.
in the wild, peregrines might be fed on the wing for as long as six weeks after fledging; but once they flew for good, these birds would have to go it alone. the observers remained still, setting out food until not one fledgling returned to eat for three consecutive days. Then they held their collective breaths: so much was invested in each little creature.
Recalls Kyle, now chief of resource management at the Marsh-BillingsRockefeller National Historical Park in Vermont, "We had to be quiet, but we were quietly excited. Especially when the front of the box came off. Sometimes the bird would immediately fly; that was too early. Stretch and flap and hop, stretch and flap and hop — that's a better release." Usually, they'd only fly a short distance the first day, returning to their ledge to feed.
In 1987 a falcon returned and the program was suspended. It took a few years longer for a breeding pair to establish itself, though. in 1991, one did, preferring however, the ocean views over the Precipice Trail. For Scott, the change is next to miraculous. "I was nineteen when I saw my first peregrine, and people came from thousands of miles around to see it. Now I can take my class out and see a peregrine whenever I want during breeding season."
Conservation Collaborations Since its founding, COA has worked with Acadia National Park and other island nonprofits to address conservation challenges and â€” together with these partners â€” help the public understand our collective role in safeguarding the natural world.
Marine Conservation Chris Petersen, faculty member in biology, and chair, since 2008, of Bar harbor's Marine Resource Committee, has spent a lot of time looking into the state of frenchman Bay. he has overseen clam flats, researched anadromous (migratory) fish, and mentored students assisting Mount Desert island Biological laboratory scientist Jane Disney's efforts to restore the essential coastal habitat of eelgrass. this work convinced Chris that the bay could use some focused attention. last year, he co-founded frenchman Bay Partners, bringing together organizations and private enterprises invested in the health of the bay. Partners include Acadia national Park, MDiBl, Maine Coast heritage trust, CoA, commercial fishermen, and members of the local tourism industry, in addition to a host of other concerned individuals. Currently, the group is involved in a conservation action plan for the bay, identifying potential threats, along with strategies to deal with those threats. the aim, Chris emphasizes, isn't to create legislation. "it's to discover what the concerns are of individual communities. the mission is pretty broad: to ensure that frenchman Bay is ecologically, economically, and socially resilient." Adds Jane Disney, "We're walking that line between environmental conservation and sustaining local marine livelihoods." for instance, students currently are searching for the source of the contaminant that has forced the closing of the Northeast Creek clam flat. They began the work in last fall's Marine Policy class, team-taught by Chris and Ken Cline, faculty member in environmental
Photograph by Julia De Santis '12.
policy and law. having ruled out nearby sources, students are now looking into possible contaminants farther upstream, such as beavers, or even ducks. to assist the partnership in its planning, Alex Brett '11, working with Chris and gordon longsworth '91 (CoA's giS lab director), is creating a baseline frenchman Bay atlas. the information they're compiling ranges from geology to species, to overboard discharge, to coastline tax maps â€” building a giS map to see, for instance, how red tide occurrences overlap with mussel and oyster aquaculture, and clam harvesting; or how current anadromous fish distribution compares with historical records. the map, says Chris, "allows us to begin the conversation; the entire community
will be able to see what's happening, and also let us know whether our information is correct." Moving forward, the partnership is looking into creative funding possibilities. "the old model is to write grants," says Jane. "But might there be more unique and creative ways to move forward with work that is large-scale, such as reseeding clam flats?" "Students do the work," notes Chris. "We help support them with framing questions and techniques, then give them equipment and supplies, often from my grants and sometimes from the Marine Resource Committee; the students write up the work, and present it." the committee has gotten quite used to hearing presentations from student researchers, he adds. College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
Before the late Bill Drury could propose reintroducing peregrines to Acadia national Park, he reviewed a number of potential nesting sites. this sketch of the Precipice trail was discovered in one of Bill's journals from the early 1980s. Though Jordan Cliffs was ultimately chosen for the reintroduction, the peregrines themselves chose the Precipice trail. thanks to Scott Swann '86, MPhil '93 and Bic Wheeler '09, who discovered the journal in the process of cataloging Bill's papers in the Drury Reading Room in Witchcliff.
forty Years with Acadia national Park the peregrine reintroduction may have been the most dramatic collaboration between College of the Atlantic and Acadia national Park, but it is just one of many. the very proximity of park and college is unusual, says David Manski, the park's chief of resource management. few colleges have a national park literally in their backyards, allowing students, faculty, and staff such easy access to a natural preserve. And few national parks have the resources of a college to draw upon, expanding the park's capacity for research and analysis.
CoA, however, is doing just that. Steve Ressel and John Anderson, both faculty members in biology, are working with students to conduct essential analyses of local impacts of global trends. John and students are studying the impact of sea-level rise on nesting seabirds on Acadia's islands. Steve's work is a local look at the global decline of amphibians, nature's "coal mine canaries." Before they can even assess the status of these animals on MDi, Steve and students must first create a census — a painstaking process.
numerous surveys of park species, including the park's first bird list.
Bibliography of all park research, "a huge collaborative effort that resulted in a working research and management reference database, which glen [Mittelhauser '89] continues to update with support from the park."
Mammal survey of isle au haut, and the reassessment of the island's river otter population.
From the very beginning it's been a fluid, rewarding friendship, even, adds David, "a godsend." Most colleges, he says, "are not training natural historians anymore, people able to observe and record their surroundings — and know what they're looking at."
Students doing park research frequently connect with Bruce Connery, Acadia national Park's wildlife biologist. he is effusive about the careful, extensive work of CoA students and faculty, and would like to be sure to highlight these additional efforts:
the Acadia herbarium collection, which is housed and maintained at CoA (allowing specimens to be used as part of classes, resulting in The Plants of Acadia National Park, a guide written in part by CoA alumni (featured in last spring's COA).
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Gardens By Design: landscape Architect Dennis Bracale '88 One of the hallmarks of Dennis Bracale's work is his sense of history, encompassing the culture and philosophy behind great garden design. His expansive knowledge has been gathered from years of study, helped along early by receiving a Watson Fellowship upon graduating from COA. His project, In Search of the Garden, beliefs about nature, took him through eighteen nations, studying the philosophy, history, and artistry behind the world's iconic garden traditions. This spread: Dennis Bracale designed this garden to reflect the Tudor heritage ofÂ the house and other structures on the estate. Its lush romantic plantings welcome visitors to the private home known as Blueberry Haven, bordering on Little Long Pond. Photos courtesy of Dennis Bracale '88.
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ennis Bracale '88 came to CoA in his late twenties, having spent a decade working in the building trades and a lifetime studying plants. Self-directed and largely self-taught, he says CoA, "was the perfect place to take my independent work and push it further," moving ahead on the multidisciplinary skills he continues to draw upon as a landscape architect: architecture, art, botany, culture, natural history, and philosophy. Dennis is one of Mount Desert island's most sought-after landscape architects, refusing many more jobs than he can possibly handle. early on, Dennis took to heart the advice the great horticulturalist Charles Sprague Sargent, founder of Boston's Arnold Arboretum, gave to renowned landscape gardener Beatrix farrand when she was just starting out: "observe and analyze nature and natural Beauty. See and study as many gardens and great landscapes of the world as you are able, and learn from all of the arts, as all art is akin." In reflecting upon his work, Dennis speaks about creating spaces, not gardens. He talks of a place set apart, a place that â€” while it still has boundaries â€” is made to appear limitless. "For me," he says, "a garden is nothing more than a dream, it has little physical materiality. idealized places are important; they're a refuge, a way we can live in our small places in a big world. it would be wonderful if all of us could create such spaces around ourselves."
left: A view of the waterfall and stream courtyard created for the northeast harbor garden of CoA trustee Philip S.J. Moriarty and his wife Meredith. Above: A view of the sunken flower garden completed for the Rose family in Northeast Harbor. The urn in the foreground was created by COA faculty member Ernie McMullen.
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Reel Ideals: lisa Burton and Chris Vincenty's Reel Pizza By Joanna Weaver '15 Photos by Julia De Santis '12
deals. everybody has something they would go to great lengths to uphold and promote. for lisa Burton '86 and Chris Vincenty ('83) of Reel Pizza Cinerama, Mount Desert island's only year-round cinema, wealth is not terribly important; contributing to the happiness of others is. At CoA both lisa and Chris found a place where, says Chris, "success is how well you express your ideals," in contrast to the more moneydriven society they had known. Success — measured not by income but by how many people one positively influences — is the driving ideal behind Reel Pizza. "We started with the idea of giving Bar harbor a year-round community center," Chris says. they wanted to provide a place where people could relax after a hard day, a place to make friends, a place to take a first date. they wanted to encourage an interest in film, and they wanted to feed folks yummy pizza. film was not Chris' original passion. learning how mechanical things worked and fixing them was. In 1982 he got a job at Bar harbor's Criterion theater working with 1932-vintage carbon arc projectors. After spending hours projecting film, his appreciation grew. "film can be a window that opens up the world," he says. "You can experience humanity at all levels." When he left the Criterion, Chris still wanted to be a projectionist. At the time Anna Durand '86 and Ralph McDonnell had an idea of merging their bakery (they had already launched Morning glory) with a cinema. their plans changed, but lisa and Chris went ahead. Reel Pizza opened for the first time in 1995 with sixty chairs at tables, a 1930s projector, and pizza, playing Priscilla Queen of the Desert. the pizza was an
easy decision. they wanted an evening at their theater to be like sitting in a living room, so a comfort food was essential. Conveniently, both lisa and Chris had previously worked at pizzerias. the two scraped together what they had, searched classified ads, bought pizza equipment from a parlor going out of business, scoured Uncle Henry's — Maine's twentieth-century Craigslist predecessor — for couches, recliners, and a bingo board, and became inventive: the illuminated strips along the auditorium floors are altered Christmas lights; the bingo board summons viewers for their pizza orders. today, after purchasing tickets at the vintage-style ticket booth — often from Chris himself — you walk into a cozy lobby featuring local art and frequently a host of COA students, faculty, staff, and alumni who are either waiting to see the
movie or working the pizza, popcorn, and beer counter. the pizzas, made on the premises, have names like zorba the greek, featuring olives and feta, and Some like it hot, with hot peppers and chilies. then you might settle on a couch or behind a counter in the cozy red and purple auditorium, chatting with neighbors until the show begins and the bingo board blinks with your pizza's number. the commitment, sincerity, and hard work have paid off. Chris and Lisa can define their own success: seeing their customers made happy by a diverse range of films, food, and community while they enjoy some of the best flicks available. And when needed, they can offer their screen to fundraisers for the Bar harbor food Pantry, Project graduation, or a struggling friend. this is their work — it pays the bills; more importantly, it expresses their ideals. College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
District 35 Representative: elspeth (elsie) flemings '07 interview and photo by Julia De Santis '12 JDS: What does it take to represent a community? ef: fundamentally what it takes to represent a community well is listening very well, having an open mind about issues, working very hard to hear different perspectives and to understand the many layers of perspectives in a community. And then, you take that as best you can and translate it into action. JDS: How do you cope with disappointing days as a representative? ef: things happen that are out of my control, there are times that i feel disappointed or sorrowful. But i try not to allow this to overcome me. it is not always easy, but it's a practice. i have a lot of driving time, and i run, try to rest, and meditate.
ulia De Santis: How did you get involved in politics?
elsie flemings: early on during my time at CoA, i volunteered at the Bar harbor food Pantry and got involved in local candidate races. i became increasingly interested in policy work. i really like thinking of things holistically: how do you promote strong economies, strong environments, and strong communities? that question underlies my passion and drive. JDS: What does your job entail? ef: for the past four years i've been serving as the state representative for four communities: the Cranberry isles, Bar harbor, Southwest harbor, and part of Mount Desert. And for the past three years i've also been working at healthy Acadia, a community health organization serving hancock County. My work with the legislature is parttime, but with a full-time commitment. College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
it's an incredible experience. i am so grateful for the opportunity to serve the communities and work with constituents on everything from family issues to really broad policy work with organizations statewide. Both of my jobs have enabled me to be deeply rooted and connected to the community. JDS: Can you explain constituent work? ef: Ah â€” for example, if someone calls and says, "i'm trying to get a license for this kind of business, can you help connect me to the right person?" or, "I'm trying to figure out whether or not I qualify forâ€Ś" i answer questions and help constituents get the support they need. But in Augusta, a lot of my time is spent on policy. We all serve on committees that delve into specific initiatives and i work on the taxation Committee. i engage with a broad variety of initiatives: forestry, fishing, affordable housing, business development.
JDS: What could politics most use now? ef: the more we can do to get big money out of politics, the better. it's one of the most crucial paths to a system where more people participate and community members' voices are heard. JDS: Any advice to a graduating senior? ef: Do what you love to do, what you're passionate about, and what brings you joy. this is really critical, even to make change happen at a global level. We need joy, positive energy, and passion, as well as the petitions and negotiations and policy work. Be responsive to where you are at any moment and support people who are doing things at all levels: everything is needed. take the time for self-care: try to find quiet moments of contemplation and reflection. It's easy to get upset and discouraged, but it doesn't help to be frustrated. it ends up limiting my ability to work and be effective. So the more we can cultivate positive energy, the more positive difference we will make in the world. 39
COA's Underwater Superhero: Diver ed By Michael Griffith '09
t sixteen, ed Monat '88 moved into his car. it was the early eighties and lobster fishing, the "family business," was suffering. ed's future seemed bleak. then an enterprising guidance counselor suggested college. "She hunted down a couple of schools for me. CoA was one of them," he says. "i got my acceptance letter and stashed it in the glove box." But the summer after graduation proved particularly rough, so ed left Manomet, Massachusetts, and drove up to Mount Desert island. he says, laughing, "they weren't expecting me at all!" ed dug out his letter, handed it over to former admissions director Ted Koffman, and became a student. his transition wasn't easy. "i grew up in a different world," says Ed. He was in the first iteration of the Human Ecology Core Course, a trial-and-error experience for all, writing was difficult, and he had to work full time. ed leaned heavily on drink, raced his car — he did what he had always done. By his third term he was asked to show cause. that's when he grew close to former faculty member in biology Butch Rommel. "After i met Butch that third term at CoA, i would meet him at four-thirty in the morning every day at Jordan's Restaurant. We would hash over the whole day — what both of us were up to. he made me think about everything." And everything led back to the sea.
Soon ed was doing independent studies on research and technical diving, quantitative hydrodynamics, and the computational modeling of invertebrates. he began cold water diving with eric Roos '87 and Scott Swann '86, MPhil '93, learning about frenchman Bay and the island he would come to call home. ed was "wicked excited" about learning, and kept on learning — and doing — until he could get others learning and doing. he outfitted the Turrets basement with a marine lab. for an outreach education class he created a traveling touch tank, which he hauled all over the state. Though nearly kicked out in his first year, "at the end of my last year," he says, "i was chosen as one of two students to give presentations to trustees." After graduation, ed spent a year in florida constructing the Marsh Biome for the Smithsonian institute's Biosphere 2 project. Back in Maine, he eventually became Bar harbor's harbormaster. Meanwhile, schools and libraries were clamoring for his traveling touch tank. "But i wanted people to see more life … a sea cucumber in a touch tank is just a big round slimy blob, but underwater they've got their feeding fronds out eating, and you can watch their suction cups holding on." Yearning to provide a more hands-on experience, he dreamed up Diver ed's Dive-in theater, an interactive cruise that turns everyone
on deck into a vicarious diver: live feeds send video and sound up to an on-board screen of ed's underwater adventures. When he surfaces, ed is accompanied by sea critters — and his new ship, the Starfish Enterprise, becomes a gigantic touch tank. "it's really just an evolution of one of the first classes I took at COA," he says. it certainly didn't come all at once. the character of Diver ed is complemented by Captain evil, ed's wife edna Martin; together they commandeer a set of allusions to popular culture that are mostly irrelevant to them. Comic book references are just one more way to get others "wicked excited" about the marine world. of course, nothing could make ed more excited than he is today. After years of working for others — doing seal strandings from Canada to Massachusetts, running charters — he created a global club, the "league of Underwater Superheroes," that celebrates his passions for diving and giving back. ed now takes people on dive adventures all over the world. Back at home, the league stages community events and conducts a yearly harbor cleanup. he may be used to living in cars and boats, but the island is ed's home now — the island and its sea. College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
AlUMni Notes 1986 Teny Bannick is now living in Athens, ohio, and has a new job as live-in manager at heritage Commons, a 44-unit public housing complex.
1993 expanding on her work for tolerance, Heather Martin has begun a master's degree in mediation and applied conflict resolution at Champlain College. A grassroots organizer for the AClU of Maine, marriage equality, and several other progressive issues, she continues to live in Surry, Maine, where she walks the dog, feeds the horse, watches the foxes, and reads loads of good books with eilon, 11, and tobiah, 8, both of whom wish she would buy a tV already. Jen Mazer had planned to attend the Boston CoA gathering last December, but was engrossed in the local occupy movement. it seemed that the police were ready to evict the occupiers that evening, so she spent the night with thousands of other supporters on Atlantic Avenue. Jen can be found at email@example.com.
Margaret Hoffman joined the staff of the Maine Office of Tourism in December. She is responsible for consumer travel and trade shows, motorcoach and group travel (including meetings and destination weddings), and the office's getaways and packaging programs. Margaret is also responsible for industry outreach, so she is often on the road visiting chambers of commerce and trade associations to deliver educational sessions. her new work email is Margaret.firstname.lastname@example.org and she's happy to hear from anyone working in Maine's tourism industry.
1998 Kate (Francis) Gatski is launching a new project; the digital guide All Craft: A Recipe for Making it Pay. She calls this a simple, methodical way to make creative passions profitable enough to pay one's bills and benefits, and offer future business opportunities, travel, and college funds for children. Kate has steered a full-time craft business for nearly ten years and was raised by a full-time crafter of thirty years. Visit kategatski.com for the guide, or gatskimetal.com for the metal sculptures and furniture she and her husband create.
on March 16, 2012, Mary Harney, CoA painter, became a United States citizen.
1997 Melissa Hirsch Skinner moved to Raleigh from Boston in December. now also licensed in north Carolina as a professional counselor, she joined a group psychotherapy practice in north Raleigh, changeforlivingcounseling.org. She writes that life is good and busy with three children, ages 7, 4, and eight months. College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
Jude Lamb is traveling with a first person dramatic presentation of her great-greatgreat-great grandmother, eunice lakeman hoar. She tells of the family's journey, in 1817, walking over the snow-covered hills of western Maine with nine young children to become the first white settlers on what is now Rangeley lake. in anticipation of the release of her young adult novel Harbinger, set in a turrets-like building, Sara Wilson Etienne enlisted the talents of twenty-five artists to create Harbinger-inspired artwork. A new piece was revealed each week on her website, culminating in a gallery show at the hive gallery in los Angeles. the show included work by Kelice Penney and David Fass '01. Currently, Sara is happily signing books, speaking at libraries and schools, and working
on her next novel. Check out the artwork: holbrookacademy.com/sketchbook.
2001 Becca Melius was recently promoted to senior curator of collections at the Museum of Science, Boston. She writes, "i'm hosting Meg Trau '12 as an intern for the summer. it's a full-circle moment, because my first museum job after graduation was interning at the Peabody essex Museum under Janey Winchell '82." Justin Mortensen married laura Cacho on October 9 in Waitsfield, Vermont. Six days later, he left for two months of work in Uganda. now in a new position with Save the Children Australia, he and laura have moved to Melbourne for at least two years. As program manager for Southeast Asia, Justin will have primary responsibility for grants implemented in Cambodia, Vietnam, laos, indonesia, Philippines, and Myanmar. their new adventures can be followed on smugglingbudgies.com. "Should be a wild ride!" writes Justin. While working for the Arkansas Field Office of the nature Conservancy as a giS specialist, Rachel Worthen is also keeping up with her artistic side with the Blue-eyed Knocker Photo Club. She recently participated in the largest photography show ever in central Arkansas. She writes, "i continue to love elasmobranch â€” sharks, rays, and skates â€” but conservation can be found anywhere â€” even on land!"
2002 Anselm Bradford now has permanent residency in new zealand. he recently co-authored his first book with Friends of eD, now Apress: The HTML5 Mastery: Semantics, Standards, and Styling. in addition to teaching, Anselm serves as a technical editor for books by o'Reilly Press and PeachpitPress and recently contributed infographics to a book by lonely Planet, How to Land a Jumbo Jet. 41
Andy and Julia Davis McLeod are having a wonderful time cuddling with Sophie, born March 21, 2012. Cait Unites moved to Kigali, Rwanda, last fall as the health services technical advisor for the Rwanda office of Population Services international. She says, "i'm enjoying getting settled and learning more about this country that will be my home for the next three years. it is nice to have Dave Feldman [faculty member in physics and math] as a neighbor while he is here on his fulbright. Visitors are always welcome; i have many empty bedrooms (and a full bar and dance floor) in my enormous Rwandan villa."
2004 Dustin Eirdosh is finishing his graduate thesis at University of Kassel as part of the Trans-Atlantic Partnership with CoA. in April, he presented his work with Genio Bertin '97 and Sarah Faull '98 from Mandala farm at the CoA sustainable foods conference, food Connections, as part of the panel discussion, "Can We have Sustainable Meat?" Dustin will be moving to Madagascar to pursue field-based journalism on various agricultural development issues. Stories will be on his blog, MythicMeats.com.
2005 Aaron Lewis was back in the US touring with thomas Dolby this spring. for updates on performances check out the news tab at aaronjonahlewis.com.
2007 Laura Briscoe spent five weeks in Tierra del fuego, Chile, on a national Science foundation-funded grant in conjunction with her work at Chicago's field Museum, writing a flora of the liverworts of southern South America. it is a region of amaz42
Inspired by Fish: Artificial Life with Robots from Darwin's Devices: What Evolving Robots Can Teach us About the Evolution of Life and the Future of Technology. Basic Books, April, 2012. By John long '86 i know this is going to sound crazy, but hear me out â€” i use robots to study biology. What's driven me to the edge, to the boundary between biology and artificial intelligence, is curiosity. i want to understand how the first fish-like vertebrates evolved 500 million years ago. if you are interested in the evolution of anything, you've got a big problem. Dead fossils tell no tales about behavior and ecology. Without those in-the-flesh interactions, we simply don't know how natural selection might've acted. the best that we can do, then, is to recreate and model the animals as biorobots. Biorobots are specially designed to mimic animals, from the sensory and locomotor systems to the nervous system that helps orchestrate behavior. Most importantly, we build biorobots to be physically embodied and fully autonomous: they operate on their own in the world without a human pulling the strings via remote control. Once we have autonomous biorobots, we use them to populate a simplified world where they must compete to survive and reproduce. each biorobot has an artificial genome that codes the genes that allow it to pass on its distinctive traits to its children. Under selection for improved feeding and escaping behavior, for example, our population of biorobotic fish, designed to mimic early vertebrates, changed its skeleton and sensory system from one generation to the next. We evolve robots to study the evolution of animals. evolving robots recreate the game of life. this is what Darwin's Devices is all about: how we conceive, design, engineer, and then use biorobots to model evolutionary processes. We collaborate: biologists, engineers, computer scientists, and mathematicians. Together, we are developing the new field of evolutionary biorobotics. evolutionary biorobotics has interesting things to say about how humans design and innovate. Since evolution is a hands-off process, we don't know what we'll get when we sit back and watch robots play the game of life. even simple biorobots produce complex behaviors that surprise us. As a result, the direction that evolution takes is often unpredictable. We can put evolution to work to create surprising designs.
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pollinators in industrial agriculture to increase biological diversity within their cropping systems.
2008 ing bryophyte diversity, she writes; her team worked on small islands where collections have never before been made. Isaac Fer writes, "I finished and published a book on my grandfather and mother's life and work at the National Geographic." the book, Traveling the World for National Geographic, contains stories and photos from around the globe, tying together sixty years of their lives, "including the four decades during which my grandfather, Thomas J. Abercrombie, was a staff photographer and journalist for the Geographic. his travels took him to the South Pole, Venezuelan jungles, and the deserts of the Middle east, where he was the first Western journalist to complete the pilgrimage to Mecca. Work on the book began shortly after his death in 2006 and remained a part-time project for my family until 2009, when it became a fulltime endeavor." Awarded a five-year fellowship to pursue his PhD in plant ecology at University of texas at Austin, Nate Pope will focus on the conservation of native
Wyatt Mathews, MPhil, is teaching eleventh graders in the Bronx, new York, where, he says, "Three of my brightest students were too busy with science
While visiting friends in new York City, Sarah Neilson met up with Becky Wartell '10 at zuccotti Park on november 14, hours before the park was raided. Becky had been occupying Wall Street since the very first day, traveling back to Maine every week to work for two days and then returning to the park. Elena Piekut writes, "I managed to beat out a pool of eighty to become the new assistant city planner for the City of ellsworth. i love it. Planning really is interdisciplinary, i learn all the time, and i help make the rules about development in ellsworth — perfect!
2011 classes during the day to take a traditional phys-ed credit." And so, the Bronx guild hS longboarding team was born. It's a distance team, skateboarding five to ten miles at a stretch. You can follow them at bronxconx.tumblr.com.
2009 Michael Griffith shares, "After teaching for two years at the UWC in india, and spending a lovely 'gap year' back in the COA community, I'm headed to King's College london to complete my graduate studies in English and philosophy."
Kaija Klauder believes she may be the first alumna to give a sworn definition of human ecology. While fulfilling her call to jury duty, she was asked, under oath, "What is human ecology?" Kaija wonders if this has happened to others, as it could be a great collection of stories! Currently living in Alaska, she is working on an organic vegetable farm. Luka Negoita has been awarded a five-year National Science Foundation graduate Research fellowship to pursue his PhD in plant ecology at Syracuse University.
AlUMni resources Wanted: Class Notes for COA
Do you have notes for the next issue of CoA? Send them to Dianne Clendaniel, alumni relations and development coordinator, at email@example.com.
Letters, Ideas, and Writers
We would love to hear what you have to say about COA, its recent makeover, and the stories we bring to you twice a year. Do you have ideas for the upcoming issues? Would like to be considered as a writer for COA? Please send your letters to the editor, poems, short stories, art work, and article ideas to Donna gold at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Black Fly Society
COA Alumni Career Services
to join this monthly giving society, go to www.coa.edu/support and click "Give A Gift Online" on the left-hand side. Then under the "Gift Frequency" drop-down menu, choose "Monthly," submit your gift, and you're done! Have questions? Call 207-801-5622.
Update your contact information three different ways: Phone: 207-801-5624 Email: email@example.com Website: www.coa.edu/alumni
• • • •
Career & Resumé guidance graduate School information networking opportunities Searchable employment Databases
The Black Fly Society is the eco-friendly way to give to CoA.
Contact Jill Barlow-Kelley, director of internships and career services, firstname.lastname@example.org or 207-801-5633.
CoMMunity N o t e s At the Community food Security Coalition's national conference in oakland last november, Molly Anderson, Partridge Chair in food and Sustainable Agriculture Systems, was honored as an outgoing board member. She also participated in the northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working group's annual conference, a panel for the national Conference on Science and the environment's meeting in Washington, DC, the national Climate Assessment's advisory meeting on rural issues, and a roundtable and panel in london on the international Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and technology for Development. Additionally, Molly was part of a group awarded a planning grant from the John Merck fund for a food Knowledge ecosystem and organized the conference "food Connections: Reconnecting hands, Mouth & Mind through food Systems education" at CoA in April. the current project of Nancy Andrews, faculty member in film, in collaboration with Artists in Context, is Delirious, exploring the medical critical care experience and aftermath from her perspective as an intensive care unit (iCu) survivor. Watch a video of nancy discussing her new work: artistsincontext.org, or read about the project at nancyandrews.net. She has been working with Robin Owings '13 on this project, and has received research and development support from CoA's Rothschild fund. Currently some of her writings and drawings are being used by medical clinicians and researchers from Vanderbilt university Medical Center and the university of nebraska in presentations about iCu delirium. nancy has had showings of her work at the Robert flaherty film Seminars in new york City, and at the film on the Rocks in Phuket, thailand in March; and at the Squeaky 44
Wheel, Buffalo Media Resources in April (with a Skype question and answer period after). In May, a showing of her films at the Brattle theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts, was accompanied by a discussion with nancy, Dr. Micheal Belkin, chief of vascular surgery at Brigham and Women's hospital, and Dr. Samata Sharma, clinical fellow in psychiatry at Beth israel Deaconess Medical Center.
in february, Rich Borden, Rachel Carson Chair in human ecology, gave an invited talk at the new forest institute in Brooks, Maine, titled "Human Ecology: Reflections on Meaningful livelihood and a livable future". he is co-author of the article "human Behavior and Sustainability," in the April issue of Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, published by the ecological Society of America. A peer-reviewed article, "the governance of things: Documenting limbo in the greek Asylum Procedure," by Heath Cabot, faculty member in anthropology, is in the current issue of Political and Legal Anthropology Review (PolAR) 35:1 11-29. "Approaching haystack" an essay by Bill Carpenter, faculty member in literature and creative writing, was published as #26 in the haystack Mountain School of Crafts monograph series. the irish band Maclir, in which Gray Cox, faculty member in political philosophy, sings and plays bones and guitar, performed at benefits at the Grand Auditorium in ellsworth and at the Bar harbor Baptist Church, raising funds for heating fuel. gray joins the band when it plays Wednesday nights at finn's in ellsworth — except this term, when he's in Vichy, france with Karen Waldron, faculty
member in literature, offering a program for thirteen students in french literature, philosophy, and culture, along with an immersion language program at CAVilAM university. Dave Feldman, faculty member in physics and math, is a visiting professor of applied physics as a fulbright fellow at the Kigali institute of Science and technology in Rwanda. While at KiSt Dave is teaching five classes over two semesters and supervising three senior theses. this winter Jay Friedlander, the SharpeMcnally Chair of green and Socially Responsible Business, presented at sev-
eral conferences, including the annual meeting of the American Association of Colleges and universities, the Ashokau exchange, Babson College Social innovation forum, and the Maine farmer's Market Convention, speaking about sustainable business, social entrepreneurship, and marketing innovations. in addition, Jay and Anna Demeo, lecturer in physics, were accepted to the 2012 Electricite de France Sustainable Design Challenge for CoA's work in sustainable energy and business. Jay, Kate Macko, sustainCollege of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
able business program administrator, and Anna will be working with a team of students to prepare CoA's presentation. in March, a record eleven students and seven ventures were selected for the hatchery, an incubator for projects in the arts, business, furniture making, alternative energy, and policy. having visited the lester B. Pearson United World College of the Pacific in Victoria, BC, where nearly a quarter of CoA's international students have studied, Kylee Gies, Coordinator of international Student Services, writes, "i found the institution, along with its vibrant staff, faculty, and students, to be friendly, innovative, community-driven, eclectically cross-cultural, and educationally progressive. i felt right at home on their campus nestled between the Pacific temperate rainforest and water's edge." Ken Hill, academic dean, is the executive director of the Society for human Ecology.Â Barbara Carter, assistant to the faculty, is secretary. Also on the board is Mihnea Tanasescu '04, studying at the free University of Brussels, and Erik Bond, MPhil '12. Past president Rich Borden continues to remain active.
NOXL Rally & World Water Forum
Ken Cline, the David Rockefeller family Chair in ecosystem Management and Protection, joined twenty-five students at the rally to prevent the extension of the Keystone Xl pipeline in Washington, DC, last november. Meeting them were CoA alumni Lauren Nutter '10, Juan Soriano '10, Nat Keller '04, Ivy Huo '05, and John Deans '07.
Todd Little-Siebold took ten students to england to study the history of apples, orchards, and cider. Using funds from the trans-Atlantic Partnership, the group traveled around england for just over two weeks, visiting orchards, cidermakers, and other sites. Also joining them were Maine apple expert John Bunker, Beech hill farm manager Alisha Strater, and Rhode island cidermaker Cassie tharinger. Nishanta Rajakaruna '94, faculty member in botany, received a $16,100 grant from the national Park Service to continue work on cataloging CoA's herbarium specimens and offering access to others for research and education, and a $12,477 grant from the national Science foundation as principal investigator on the macrofungi collection consortium: unlocking a biodiversity resource for College of the AtlAntiC MAgAzine
in March, Ken attended the World Water forum in Marseilles, france, along with (directly above, left to right) Lisa Bjerke '13, Rachel Briggs '13, Barbara Beblowski '14, and in front Janoah Bailin '14 and Robin Owings '13. Ken and students posted reports from the forum at www. earthinbrackets.org. Keep following the site for reflections on the United nations Conference for Sustainable Development, or Rio+20, this June. 45
understanding biotic interactions, nutrient cycling, and human affairs. For part of this winter, nishi held two visiting scientist positions in South Africa: at the School of Environmental Sciences and Development, North-West University, Potchesftroom Campus, and in the Materials Research Department, iThemba Laboratory for Accelerator Based Sciences, National Research Foundation. Nishi also coauthored the following recent papers: with alumna Sarah Neilson '09, he wrote "Roles of rhizospheric processes and plant physiology in phytoremediation of contaminated sites using oilseed Brassicas," in The Plant Family Brassicaceae: Contribution Towards Phytoremediation, edited by N.A. Anjum, I. Ahmad, M.E. Pereira, A.C. Duarte, S. Umar, and N. A. Khan. 2011. This is part of the Environmental Pollution Book Series published by Springer in Dordrecht, The Netherlands. With alumnus Tanner Harris '06, former faculty member Fred Olday, as well as S. Clayden and A. Dibble, he wrote, "Lichens of Callahan Mine, a copper and zinc-enriched Superfund site in Brooksville, Maine, USA," Rhodora 113: 1-31, 2011. With B.L. Anacker, D.D. Ackerly, S.P. Harrison, J.E. Keeley, and M.C. Vasey, Nishi wrote "Ecological strategies in California chaparral: Interacting effects of soils, climate, and fire on specific leaf area," in Plant Ecology and Diversity. 2011. With S.P. Harrison and S.C. Goncalves, editors, he is co-editing "Serpentine Ecosystems: A Global Perspective. Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Serpentine Ecology," a special issue of the journal Plant Ecology and Diversity. 2012. In January, Davis Taylor, faculty member in economics, was the keynote speaker at the conference By Land and By Sea: Leveraging the Co-op Model for Business Success at the Maine Organic Farmers and gardeners Association in Unity, Maine. The conference brought together farmers, fishers, cooperative businesses, organizations that help foster cooperatives, and those interested in starting producer or consumer cooperatives. Sean Todd, Steven K. Katona Chair in Marine Sciences, recently completed a sabbatical collecting data for the Antarctic
Community Connections COA staff and faculty are thoroughly connected to the MDI community. Here's a list of just some of the local involvement we've discovered. Because we know that some staff and faculty are too modest — or busy — to add to the list, this is just a sampling: •
Abbe Museum exhibition design
Bar Harbor Chamber of Commerce Sustainable Tourism committee member
Bar Harbor Food Pantry board
Bar Harbor Marine Resource Committee chair
Book Club facilitator
Business of Reading participant
Down East Educational Partnership for Hancock County
Food Bank board member
Frenchman Bay Conservancy board
Frenchman Bay Partners steering committee
island Connections driver
healthy Acadia Advisory Committee
Maine Businesses for Sustainability board
Maine Science Fair judge
MDI Historical Society assistance
MDI Regional School System Certification Committee
MDI Regional School System Crisis Team
MDI Regional School System presentations
MDI Regional School System Service Learning Leadership Team
MDI Toastmasters International (VP of Education)
MDI YMCA board
Senior Exhibition panel for MDI High School's senior degree requirement
Somes-Meynell Wildlife Sanctuary board
Women's Health Center Advisory Committee
Humpback Whale Catalog in the Southern Ocean and Antarctic Peninsula. Together with students, alumni, and fellow Allied Whale researchers, Sean attended the 19th Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals. COA and Allied
Whale had nine accepted presentations, of which Sean co-authored five. Six of the presentations had COA student authors. Jacqueline Bort, MPhil '11, Jessica McCordic '12, Kathryn Scurci '11, and Chris Spagnoli '12 were each senior authors.
More than thirty people attended the Allied Whale reunion organized at the event. Sean also co-authored a recently accepted paper, "Hierarchical and rhythmic organization in the songs of humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae)" in the journal Bioacoustics, with colleagues Stephen Handel and Annie Zoidis. Before heading to France, Karen Waldron presented a paper on medical authority in Sarah Orne Jewett's fiction at the 2012 northeast Modern language Association meetings in Rochester, New York. She also chaired a successful panel on The Questions of Voice in Nineteenth-Century American Women's Literature.
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In MeMorIaM MArion fuller Brown
wanted to know more, and always inquired with a smile, and a word of encouragement. … 'Keep at it,' he would say, convinced that what we were up to was the most important effort on the island, at the college, in the world even. his legacy is full of good cheer." – natalie Springuel '91
CoA Board Member May 14, 1917–June 3, 2011
Marion fuller Brown was a CoA trustee from 1972 to 1973. As a Maine legislator from 1966 to 1972, she sponsored the legislation banning billboards from Maine roads. writes her son, henry w. fuller, "her solid obituary details her ... focused personal involvement in local, state, and federal political roles that embrace that of a dedicated conservationist, a stalwart middle-of-theroad republican, and a giver of her time and money to causes she believed in. She died as she had ordained ... in her bed looking out over the fields sprinkled with a full fresh crop of daisies down to the York river."
JAMeS C. MACleod
CoA Board Member June 6, 1924–January 21, 2012 As Mount desert island's representative to the Maine legislature for three sessions, Bar harbor native James Macleod was quite helpful to CoA's early years. founding trustee leslie Brewer credits James with helping the college obtain accreditation, legitimizing our students and their diplomas. James and his wife Jane were the owners of the original Bluenose Motel; he also worked as vice president of marketing and public relations at Bar harbor Bank and trust Company, and was a member of its board of directors for nearly four decades.
CoA President from 1984 to 1993 April 30, 1924–november 21, 2011 The fall issue of COA included a tribute to Lou Rabineau, published just days before he died. Hearing the news, alumni who knew Lou responded with their own memories. Here are just a few: "lou was an amazing, warm, intelligent man with a great sense of humor. i loved
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"Very sad to hear. … Lou helped put CoA on a trajectory for success without many of us ever knowing that it was even happening. thank you, lou. By the way, who else remembers the 'louuuuuuuu' chorus at graduation? Adulation from the students in the highest form." – Josh winer '91 Louis Rabineau in front of The Turrets. Courtesy of the College of the Atlantic Archives.
being in Twelfth Night — him playing the priest who married lady olivia (me) to Sebastian (Clark lawrence '92). we had a blast in rehearsal! he will be missed." – Bonnie giacovelli '93 "really sorry to hear the news. i knew lou well, served on the board during most of his presidency. He was a terrific and important president of CoA. i have said many times that lou saved the college. The fire could have easily wiped CoA from the map and the following years were some tough sledding for the college. lou brought tremendous skill as a leader and passion for CoA's mission to his work. i admired him greatly. And Lou was the officiant at our wedding in 1997 when laura and i were married in the Beatrix farrand garden. he was the perfect man for the job." – Michael B. Kaiser '85 "i loved lou. i still have a couple ties he gave me, right from around his own neck." – CedarBough t. Saeji '93 "i remember lou as always being genuinely interested in what students were up to. he always had a question,
ChriStine ridenour '75
August 25, 1952–november 13, 2011 Christine ridenour was one of CoA's first students, and our third graduate, standing alone in 1975, as thenCongressman william S. Cohen gave the commencement address. Chrissy was devoted to art and architecture, working closely with JoAnne Carpenter, faculty emerita. with JoAnne, she was crucial in launching COA's first art gallery, serving as her gallery assistant for two years while also devoting herself to working with children through her internship and senior project.
helen deMetrA "BeCKY" KoulouriS January 1, 1953–december 1, 2011
Becky was part of the group of thirteen guinea pig students in the summer of 1970. gray Cox, faculty member in political economics, who was a student in that group, remembers her as bringing "great maturity and strength to the group." She remained involved with the college in its early years, then went on to teach in the freeport elementary schools and later became Bowdoin College's environmental studies coordinator.
EvEr WondEr … why Gates is called Gates? Centered on the western wall of the thomas S. gates, Jr. Community Center — and witness to objections and ovations, dances and discussions from numerous All College Meetings, job talks, plays, and other community events — hangs a portrait of a man of such piercing intelligence that his gaze borders on skepticism. the portrait is striking for another reason: that man is just so very elegant. this is thomas S. gates, Jr., who had been US Secretary of Defense under President Dwight eisenhower, and had become chairman of the board of Morgan guaranty trust (now JP Morgan Chase) when CoA was starting up. So why is gates named for him? for that, we went to ed Kaelber, founding CoA president, who reminded us that at its beginning COA needed financial support, yes, but it also needed respect. Much of the work of drumming up both fell to ed. he went around to many people, but few had the international stature of northeast harbor summer resident tom gates. tom even had academic credentials. his father had been president of the University of Pennsylvania; tom, a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the institution, served on its board.
this Thomas S. Gates print (detail) by Albert Murray, 1971, hangs in CoA's thomas S. gates, Jr. Community Center.
Says ed, "So, i went to tom and i told him we were thinking of starting a college on the island. 'that's a lousy idea,'" tom responded. ed sent him a prospectus. And visited him again. "'Well, it's not a bad idea,'" tom allowed. "'But you'll need at least a million dollars to finance it.' We'll need some money," Ed agreed. "Not quite a million. Let me send you a financial prospectus." At Ed's next visit, Tom thought COA had enough merit to write a check for $5,000. But ed stopped him. "A check is nice," he told the bank chair, "but i'd rather have you join our board of trustees." By now ed is laughing at himself as he continues: "he told me, 'i'll think about it, but i have a word of advice: if someone offers you $5,000, take it!'" And so began a long and close friendship, with tom joining CoA's board in 1972 (thanks to encouragement also from founding trustee les Brewer), retiring in 1976 to become the equivalent of ambassador to China (his title was chief of US liaison mission). When tom returned in 1978, ed thought he would make a great board chair. So did the University of Pennsylvania. But ed told tom, "Sure, it would be a great honor for you to chair the board of the University of Pennsylvania, but here at CoA — we really need you!" Tom Gates served as COA board chair from 1979 to 1981. Concludes Ed: "Tom knew what the right questions were, he didn't get bogged down in trivia. he was interested in the substance of the college, and he opened a lot of doors." How fitting that Gates Community Center, one of COA's prime community portals, would honor a man who opened many doors early on.
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What is human Ecology to mE? Essay and image by Julia De Santis '12
I have two weeks left as a student before I graduate and venture out into the world, and so the obvious question arises: what's next? For me, yes — but I'm also curious about you and everyone else. Because I want the world. For you and for me, bien sur! But mostly, I just don't want to be responsible for destroying it. Or for sitting around talking, deconstructing, and reconstructing ideas until it's too late. We are living through a war, a war waged against the planet by the dominant culture of consumption, against that which supports all life. And I know we must fight back, but how? Especially when the problems are so complex. Again and again, I come to this conclusion: we connect. We work to break down barriers without destroying our differences. We overcome self-consciousness, language, race, gender, and socioeconomics. We destroy every possible barrier that keeps you away from me, because if your hand isn't in mine as we step toward the future, we are too far apart. We refuse to do anything less than … love. Because what is love if it is not that which propels us — transforms us — to act from our anger and sorrow to use our power and knowledge to live a life in pursuit of something better for ourselves, our children, and our community? When I refer to love, it is this force and this desire to live and let live. Maybe there's a better word for it. Justice, perhaps? Truth? This war may be stupid and complicated and I don't know which side will win, but I live with the hope that … well, at least that there is still hope. And if it is too late? I live believing that fighting on the side of life, light, and love is more fun than giving up. So, what's next for this human ecologist? Well, whatever I do, wherever I am, I will dance and smile and LOVE my way to the future, and I will try my darn hardest to make it a beautiful one.
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