Page 1


Spring 2008

chronicle news and information from the

Southern Vermont-St. Joseph College Community

College develops plans for new residence complex with $1.5 million in major gifts Thanks to a $1 million gift from an anonymous donor and a $500,000 donation from Bennington business leader and SVC Trustee Norman H. Greenberg and his wife Selma (see accompanying story), Southern Vermont College is embarking upon an expansion of its student residential capacity, beginning with construction of a new 120-bed residential hall. “Gifts of this magnitude are institutionally transformative, and we are both deeply honored and inspired by the showing of such remarkable support for SVC and its future,” said SVC President Karen Gross. “Our current and future students will unquestionably benefit from the new housing that will provide new opportunities for growth and learning, both academically and personally.” Providing about 30,000 square feet of living and learning space, the new residential complex will be sited in such a way that it links the upper and lower campuses and allows for maximization of the College’s magnificent mountain vistas. The design of the building, Gross explained, will emphasize adaptable and flexible space and be built in accordance with environmentally-friendly practices. “We’ll be designing a residential hall to meet the needs of both current and future students. We want to construct a residential hall that can adapt to what our students in the coming decades will want and need to thrive educationally and personally,” Gross observed. Continued on page 2

inside this issue 2

Greenberg donation


President’s Column


Quest for Success award


College Issues Forum


Axinn scholarships




New trustees named


New academic programs

10 Class Notes

In the foreground is a model of the new residence hall, with the pond and current residence halls beyond.

Education for the future:

Letting students build an enterprise Beginning in the fall semester, Southern Vermont College’s new “Build the Enterprise” initiative will provide students with the opportunity to research, create and run a business over the course of their SVC education. Businesses of all kinds can be created – in retail, computer software, healthcare or what most interests students – and the most successful ideas will be funded through a Venture Fund the College will create with $100,000 in assets. SVC faculty members and mentors, including SVC alumni, will guide students throughout the process, providing networking opportunities, Continued on page 2 inspiration, advice and expertise. John Max Miller ’83, the Founder and General Manager of @utorevenue, praises the program’s experiential learning approach for “allowing the students to see how theory is applied and being able to leave college with ‘real world experience’ that will allow them to become more successful faster.” SVC/SJC CHRONICLE

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Bennington business leader, trustee donates $500,000 to building effort Longtime Bennington business leader and Southern Vermont College trustee Norman H. Greenberg and his wife Selma have given SVC a gift of $500,000 for the expansion of facilities on the College campus, beginning with a new residence hall for 120 students. The announcement of the gift was made at the November meeting of the Board of Trustees.

The façades of the three-story residence hall, in a rendering by Centerline Architects & Planners of Bennington.

Breaking Ground, cont. My wife Selma and I believe in SVC, and we believe in the students who will stay in Bennington and improve the community and enter the workforce. —Norman Greenberg

“My wife Selma and I believe in SVC,” Greenberg told the trustees, “and we believe in the students who will stay in Bennington and improve the community and enter the workforce. We are doing what is right for SVC and right for the community.” “Selma and Norman Greenberg are true leaders in the Bennington community,” declared SVC President Karen Gross, “and their remarkable support of the College and its growth in the coming years is deeply appreciated. We are grateful for their extraordinary generosity, their ongoing wisdom and their confidence in us and in our students, many of whom we hope will make Bennington their home and workplace. The Greenbergs are role models for us all.” “On behalf of the Board of Trustees and the College community,” noted SVC Board Chair Wallace Altes, “I want to thank Norman and Selma Greenberg for their generous donation. The Greenbergs’ gift is truly a vote of confidence in the College and in the direction it is headed. We are deeply appreciative.” In October, the College announced that due to increases in projected enrollment, it is hoping to build another residence hall for which it had received a $1 million anonymous donation. The College currently has rooms for 230 students and associated residential staff in five residential halls, but projected enrollment suggests that by next year, the College will need additional capacity to accommodate the growing number of students who want to live on campus. The College currently requires first- and second-year students to reside on campus, unless they live within a 45-mile radius from campus. President Gross also observed that on-campus residency not only enhances academic achievement, but it strengthens the sense of community on campus while the College works to facilitate the placement of students in internships and projects throughout the local community.


The three-building, three-story structure will be located south of the current dormitories and cafeteria, across the pond that, as part of the construction project, will be restored and flanked by walking paths. The new complex will be accessible to the upper campus and the Everett Mansion via a landscaped and lighted walking path. Among the new structure’s amenities is a large lounge area immediately inside the main entranceway with a balcony, working fireplace and full kitchen that allow the space to be used for events. There will be an additional common lounge and study room on each floor. Student rooms are arranged in suites with a shared full bath and half bath. While the new residence hall will be geared toward upperclass students, the good news for the other dorms is that they are being upgraded over the coming summer with new state-of-the-art carpeting impervious to spills and odors, improved bathrooms and new furniture. In addition, the dining hall and Moose Lounge are being revamped to create a more versatile and capacious area for meals and entertainment. The College currently has rooms for 230 students and associated residential staff in five residential

halls. While the College has an enrollment of more than 400 students, it has adopted an aggressive admissions program to increase that number to 750 over the next six years. And the trend is that more and more students prefer to live on campus. “Gradually increasing the enrollment enriches campus life for students,” President Gross noted. National studies show that students who live on campus are more likely to complete their education. This is particularly true of lower-income students and for students who are the first in their family to attend college, a sizable percentage of the SVC student population. And students who live on campus tend to achieve higher grade-point averages. “With the new residential hall, we recognize there is significant opportunity to better serve our students through the enhanced learning opportunities — and convenience — of on-campus living,” Gross said. “For education to really work most effectively, we need to be open to seeing, finding and engaging in education everywhere; you need to listen for it and be prepared for it at each moment.” Updates on the construction will be posted on the College’s Web site, See the page link under “Campus News.”

Build the Enterprise, cont. The program will be divided into four phases: 1) student teams research industries, develop a business plan and apply for venture funds; 2) student teams finalize plans for the business and begin operations; 3) operation of successful businesses provide students with first-hand experience of different leadership roles while businesses that are not profitable will offer opportunities to evaluate what went wrong; 4) businesses will be retained, sold or liquidated with funds used to repay the Venture Fund and any outstanding loans. If a business can be sold for a profit, more than 50 percent of those earnings will be shared among student team members. Furthermore, a panel made up of members of the Bennington County Industrial Corporation (BCIC) has agreed to award an annual prize of $1,500 to the best student-developed business plan. “The BCIC’s mission is to foster high-quality job creation, and we want to encourage young entrepreneurs, like SVC students, to stay in the Bennington area,” observed BCIC executive director Peter Odierna. “This is an important step in growing a vibrant, welltrained and motivated workforce.” SVC President Karen Gross, who serves on the

BCIC Board, also noted that BCIC members will serve as mentors to “Build the Enterprise” student teams and assist the students in designing their business plans and carrying out their business ventures. “Partnerships like this with the local Bennington community and its business leadership are vital to the College,” she said. “This collaboration is an important opportunity not only for students, but for the future development of the region. It is also evidence of the remarkable business support for the ‘Build the Enterprise’ program itself.” President Gross also observed that as students work within the community to plan and operate their businesses, they will inevitably establish networks of relationships within Bennington County. “Hopefully, for these students,” she added, “Bennington County will begin to feel like home and then will become their home — not only a place where they went to college. Our students will want to stay in the place where they’ve discovered they can achieve success.”


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Building for Tomorrow By Karen Gross, President “When it comes to the future, there are three kinds of people: those who let it happen, those who make in happen and those who wonder what happened.” John M. Richardson Jr., professor of International Development in the School of International Service at American University, Washington, D.C.

This issue of the Chronicle is focused on building the future, and SVC is indeed building — literally and figuratively. As detailed in other articles here, we anticipate building a new residential hall (assuming needed permissions and permits are obtained, of course) that will open in early 2009. We are developing new academic programs, including an initiative called “Build the Enterprise” in which students will literally develop and run businesses of all sorts. We have launched a new first-year course called “Quest for Success” that strives to link new students to each other, to a faculty member, to the community — and the program has already received national recognition. We joined a new athletic conference (the New England Collegiate Conference) and will be a part of its 2008-2009 inaugural season, allowing us to participate competitively in NCAA Division III tournaments. As this issue of the Chronicle reflects, among John Richardson’s options, SVC has chosen to be a place where we can make the future happen — for our students, for our community and for the next generation. And we are making the future happen by making a myriad of changes in the College’s physical plant, its academic programs and its student life experience.

future, to create graduates whom employers seek out as employees. This means recognizing future trends in the workplace and giving students the critical thinking skills and love for learning that will enable them to navigate a lifetime of careers. And we can continue to produce graduates who are not just ready but willing to be the leaders for tomorrow — leaders in their communities, leaders in their workplaces and leaders in their families. But there is one more goal that accounts for why we are making changes: we want to make the case for small, affordable and excellent liberal arts education


Reunion Weekend 2008 SCHEDULE OF EVENTS* Friday, May 16 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.

Registration (Everett Mansion)

7:00 – 9:00 p.m.

Reception – cash bar w/ wine and beer, light refreshments (Everett Mansion)

Saturday, May 17 9:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

Registration continues (Everett Mansion)

11:30 a.m.

“Welcome to the Alumni Association” Barbecue for Class of 2008 graduates and Reunion participants (side lawn, Everett Mansion; rain location: Dining Commons)

1:00 p.m.

Alumni Association meeting (Everett Theatre, Everett Mansion), all are welcome!

2:15 p.m.

Tour of new residence hall site (meet in Courtyard)

4:30 p.m.

Class of 2008 Reception for graduates, their families and Reunion participants (Burgdorff Gallery, Everett Mansion)

7:00 p.m.

Alumni dinner (Mt. Anthony Country Club, 180 Country Club Drive)

It is an exciting time to be on campus. Some have commented that it is like getting on a plane as it is taking off. The critical question — and the one I want to answer here — is why we are making changes at SVC. To continue the plane analogy, where is the SVC plane going? Let me start by observing, clearly and unequivocally, that we are not making changes just for change’s sake. That would not be a sufficient justification for the time, effort and money it takes across the SVC community to build new facilities, develop new programs and institute new initiatives. As important as change is to stay competitive with our collegiate neighbors (who are growing and changing), that is not reason enough. We are making changes because we think that, by doing so, we can create an institution that will thrive — not just survive — over the next 80 years (As most of you know, we just celebrated our first 80 years.) Change is what will allow us to build a wonderful, sustainable future. Through change, we can accomplish several critical goals. We can attract more students to SVC, growing our student population from 450 students to more than 700 students in the next six years. We can provide enhanced academic and personal experiences for students when they are with us on campus that will enable them to participate successfully in the workplace of the

so that SVC and institutions like it across America will not go the way of the buggy whip-maker. We must change to demonstrate the continued viability and the exceptional educational value of institutions like SVC. We are to big universities what farmers’ markets are to grocery stores: we are critically important to the fabric of our time and culture. In short, we are changing to make a difference, and we are changing — by design. It is an exciting time at SVC. Come join us — come get on the plane — as we work to insure that the next generation will be in good hands.

Sunday, May 18 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. 1:00 p.m.

Continental brunch (Dining Hall) Commencement followed by reception (Greystone Lawn, Everett Mansion), includes presentation of the Distinguished Alumni Award and special recognition for alumni who graduated 50 or more years ago

* Schedule of events subject to change. Campus Shop open Saturday, May 17, and Sunday, May 18, from 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.


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SVC first-year program receives national recognition “Quest for Success,” the College’s new program for first-year students that was designed by Professor and Associate Dean Daniel Cantor Yalowitz, has received national recognition for its creative approach to enhancing the academic and social success of first-year students. The National Resource Center for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition at the University of South Carolina selected the College’s new program as one of five semifinalists in its national campaign to acknowledge first-year programs. Required of all first-year students, Quest for Success combines classroom instruction with servicelearning projects. In the fall, about 100 SVC students engaged in environmental projects at Hildene in Manchester, were paired with veterans at the Vermont Veterans’ Home in Bennington, studied locally grown produce as part of a review of the College’s food service offerings, and worked with curators at the Bennington Museum to create phone-accessible descriptions of items in the museum’s collection. This spring, Quest for Success students are working with Oldcastle Theatre Company. In February, Yalowitz, along with SVC students Amber Coutermash of Westport, Conn., and Adam Northup of West Kingston, R.I., attended the 27th Annual Conference on the First-year Experience in San Francisco to receive the award.

First-year SVC students work on a mural on behalf of the American Chestnut Foundation, part of a service-learning project for the Quest for Success program.

SVC spearheads the creation of Four College Issues Forum

At a meeting of the minds, the region’s four college presidents agreed to establish a four-college issues forum. From left, Bennington College President Elizabeth Coleman, Williams College President Morton Schapiro, Southern Vermont College President Karen Gross and Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts President Mary Grant.


In a first-time partnership, four colleges in Southern Vermont and Western Massachusetts have agreed to co-sponsor an annual symposium to bring significant discussion of national and global issues to the region and to their campuses. The Four College Issues Forum, the initiative of the presidents of Southern Vermont College and Bennington College in Vermont and Williams College and the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) in neighboring Berkshire County, Massachusetts, will feature an address by a prominent national figure. The location of the symposium will rotate between the four campuses, alternating between a Massachusetts and a Vermont college annually. The first Four College Issues Forum will be held April 30 at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams, Mass., the hometown of MCLA. The Forum is free and open to the public. Amory Lovins, nationally-known environmentalist and chairman of the Rocky Mountain Institute, has agreed to open the Four College Issues Forum with an address on the issue of sustainability. “It is wonderful that four very different academic institutions are working together to address the issues that affect our students, our communities, our futures,” said SVC President Karen Gross. “Collaborative efforts such as these are important ways of signaling the power that can come from working together to improve our world.” Similar to the kinds of collaboration developed at the adjacent educational institutions in the Pioneer Valley, the Four College Issues Forum represents the first time these institutions have participated in a shared educational initiative.

“I am delighted to be working with my colleagues and friends from Southern Vermont, Bennington and Williams on this exciting initiative,” said MCLA President Mary Grant. “MCLA and Williams have found a number of ways to work together over the years, yet reaching across the border, building partnerships with our sister institutions in Vermont presents a unique opportunity.” “This forum is a great occasion for the four colleges to work together closely,” commented Bennington College President Elizabeth Coleman. “We’re very excited about not only what it will mean for each of our campuses but for the region as a whole, to have access to remarkable people from across the nation discussing the urgent questions of our day.” “Williams is pleased to join our colleague institutions in forming the Four College Issues Forum,” said Williams College President Morton Schapiro. “Our campuses provide many occasions for students, faculty, staff and local residents to analyze and discuss important issues of the day. This new forum deftly combines these resources to create dramatic new opportunities, and I can think of no more important topic to launch this series than sustainability, and no more provocative a speaker than Amory Lovins.” MCLA President Grant observed that collaborations between colleges are an important component of providing students with a wide spectrum of perspectives on their world. “Increasingly, higher education is being called upon to look for new ways to collaborate to better meet the needs of our students,” she said. “While we serve different communities and missions, each of our campuses are made up of students passionate about the broader world and eager to connect with other students about issues that excite and concern them. “This series will not only help us develop new connections between our campuses, our students and our faculties, but it will also enable each college to continue to enrich our communities by bringing in speakers of note to address timely and relevant public policy issues.”


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Donald E. Axinn Foundation grants community service scholarships

State grant funds internship coordinator “I’m here because I think internships are really important,” Sawitsky said. “If we’re going to try to keep people in the area, and develop a workforce that will attract businesses, internships are the way to go. They help students learn about the marketplace and what the job market is really like. And it’s their first step in a career.” Employers and organizations interested in learning more about SVC internships can contact Sawitsky at 802-447-6369 or

The Donald E. Axinn Foundation of Jericho, N.Y., has awarded Southern Vermont College a $250,000 grant to fund the creation of 10 scholarships for prospective first-year students who will have demonstrated a commitment to community service at the time of their application to college. Beginning with next year’s fall semester, each of the Axinn Community Leadership Scholars will receive $7,500 per year for their four years at Southern Vermont College. “This remarkable gift will benefit SVC in many ways,” commented SVC President Karen Gross. “It will enable us to recruit, retain and ease the financial burden of students who can improve our community and our world. We appreciate the extraordinary generosity of the Donald E. Axinn Foundation and look forward to welcoming the Axinn Community Leadership Scholars into the SVC community. Their presence will support the values Joan and Donald Axinn represent: commitment, caring and service.” Seventy-five percent of SVC students engage in community service. According to the Office of Campus Life and Leadership, during the 2005-2006 academic year, students logged more that 4,000 hours of community service in the Bennington area. They pursued activities in the fields of criminal justice, human services, psychology and healthcare.

SVC first-year students Ruari Clancy, Kevin Warner and Richard Warner devoted their Quest for Success community service project to recording the stories and lives of veterans at the Vermont Veterans Home in Bennington. The Axinns have been longtime supporters of Southern Vermont College. Last year, in recognition of his support, the College named one of its five academic divisions The Donald Everett Axinn Division of Social Sciences. A former dean at Hofstra University and the recipient of five honorary degrees, including an honorary doctorate of Humane Letters from Southern Vermont College, Donald Axinn is a person with wide and diverse interests. In addition to being a real estate developer in Long Island, he is a published novelist and poet. He is also an avid aviator and sportsman. He has written eight volumes of poetry (some of which are translated into Spanish), and his essays have been published in the New York Times, Newsday and the poetry journal “Antaeus.” His novels include “The Ego Makers” and “Spin,” which was made into a feature film.

In recent years, SVC students have completed internships with a number of regional organizations, including:

Edith Sawitsky, coordinator of internships at SVC.

Seeking to expand its outreach to local employers and bolster the local workforce, SVC has hired Edith Sawitsky of North Bennington, Vt., to establish an Office of Internships that is intended to serve more than 30 regional employers annually and 260 students at internship and practica sites. The effort is being supported by a $36,100 grant from the Vermont Department of Labor. The College already incorporates a strong commitment to service-learning and internships into its academic course work as a way of providing its students educational opportunities in real-life situations to complement the theoretical instruction received in the classroom. In their first semester, all SVC first-year students are required to take a “Quest for Success” course that combines classroom work and an on-site project in the community. Sawitsky is co-owner of Fundamental Shift, a management consulting firm in North Bennington. Previously, she had been a vice president of operations and administration with Charles Schwab & Co. in Jersey City, N.J., and had developed career path programs for Shearson Lehman Brothers in New York City.

American Chestnut Foundation Applejack Partners, Ltd. Bank of Bennington Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce Bennington Banner Bennington Energy Committee Big Brothers/Big Sisters CAT-TV Congregation Beth El Department of Corrections/Probation & Parole Equinox Hotel Hemmings Motor News Kelley Real Estate Magic Sleigh Paradise Motor Inn PAVE (Project Against Violent Encounters) Sacred Heart School Southwestern Vermont Medical Center Scully Corporation Stratton Mountain Sunrise Family Resource Center United Counseling Services Williams Financial Management

Support SVC Academics… Athletics… Scholarships… None of these are possible without your support and the Southern Vermont College Fund. Visit: to make your gift today!


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Harrington scores 1,000th point Southern Vermont College men’s basketball co-captain Nick Harrington scored his 1,000th point as a Mountaineer Thursday, December 6, in a road game at Elms College – it came on a foul shot when he admits he closed his eyes before shooting. “I didn’t really want to set it (the record) on a foul shot, so I told the guys I was going to close my eyes and if I made it, I made it,” said Harrington. “I made it.” The 6-foot-7, 220-pound senior forward from Brooklyn, N.Y., scored 34 points and grabbed 16 rebounds against Elms and has been almost an automatic double-double the last two years as his rebounding prowess has been as much a part of his game as his gliding moves to the basket and his resounding dunks. “Nick is an exceptional talent,” said Mountaineers head coach Michael McDonough, who has coached Nick for three of his four years at Southern Vermont College. “His numbers speak to that fact. More important, he is a great teammate, a true leader and a good person. I have never known a single individual on whom Nick has not made a positive impression. Opposing coaches especially speak in unison of their respect for Nick. We are very fortunate that Nick Harrington is a Mountaineer, both as student and player.”

It is the second consecutive year that a Mountaineer has attained the milestone, as last year guard Chris Matte ’07 did the same. “It is a big accomplishment for me personally. I came here from a high school where I played a lot but did not come near to getting 1,000. But coming here and getting 1,000, with this I leave a legacy here at SVC,” said Harrington. “It was a big record for me to set, to have played here for so long and have my name on the list (of 1,000 point scorers) along with my friend Chris Matte.” Last year, as a junior, Harrington led the entire NCAA Division III in rebounding with a 13.5 per game average. In addition to his rebounding, he was also in the top 50 nationally in scoring with an even 20.0 points per game average. He had 16 doubledouble games, including nine in a row to end the season. He had 37 steals and 23 blocks on the season. Harrington has not developed late as a scorer and rebounder, either. As a freshman he averaged 10.4 points and 9.2 rebounds per game, and as a sophomore he upped his averages to 13.7 points and 10.5 rebounds. “Nick has been playing well since he arrived at SVC his first year,” said Southern Vermont College athletic director Benjamin Kozik. “However, what impresses me most about Nick is his character – something that we preach here in our athletic department. He conducts himself very well both on and off the court, and there is no doubt that he will continue to achieve at a high level even when his collegiate days are over.” Harrington will complete his degree in Business Administration this spring and says he plans to take a shot at pro ball in Europe. “I’m a hard worker, I am eager to play and to win, and make my team better,” said Harrington. “I am hoping to continue playing somewhere.”

Senior Nick Harrington was profiled in Sports Illustrated magazine for his remarkable performance in a game against Mitchell College in which he scored 37 points and pulled down 33 rebounds. He is only the second Division III player to have a 30-30 game, SI reported.


Two women hoopsters earn Division III honors By a vote of Division III coaches, freshman Julia Fagan of New Britain, Conn., and junior Markeisha Mullen of Baltimore, Md., received honors this year for consistently outstanding performances during the women’s basketball season. Fagan was named to the first team of the Association of Division III Independents (AD3I) and was also named Rookie of the Year. Mullen was selected to the second team after having twice earned Female Athlete of the Month from Division III. “Julia had a fabulous year,” commented women’s basketball coach Ben Kozik. “Her athleticism and effort combined to make her one of the best freshman in the nation.” Fagan was one of only two freshmen nationwide in the top 60 in Division III in four statistical categories. She was 14th in points (20.3), 36th in steals (3.3), 40th in rebounds

Julia Fagan (10.4) and 58th in blocks (1.8). A psychology major, Mullen averaged a double-double during the month of February. Her best game came against Mitchell when she scored 32 points and pulled down 26 rebounds, the fifth-highest, singlegame Division III total this season. “We are thrilled to have Markeisha return for another season,” said Coach Kozik. “All but one of our letter-winners will be back next year.”

SVC joins in salute to women athletes Last fall, sophomore Julie Patenaude of Canaan, Vt., President Karen Gross, athletic department special advisor Matt Couloute and men’s and women’s volleyball coach Angie Hillman attended the 2007 Annual Salute to Girls and Women in Sports at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City. Patenaude is a member of the SVC women’s basketball and cross country teams. More than 60 top athletes and celebrities, including Academy Award-winner Holly Hunter and boxer Laila Ali, gathered to celebrate the achievements of girls and women in sports. The event raised more than $1.5 million that will be turned into grants and advocacyrelated programming. Michelle Kwan, the most decorated figure skater in U.S. history, was recognized for her significant contribution to the Women’s Sports Foundation and to the development and advancement of women’s sports. Founded in 1974 by Billie Jean King, the Women’s Sports Foundation is a charitable educational organization dedicated to advancing the lives of girls and women through sports and physical activity.

(Top) Sophomore Julie Patenaude, center, with United States Softball National Team members Natasha Watley, left, and Jennie Finch, right, at the Annual Salute to Girls and Women in Sports at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City. (Bottom) Olympic figure skater Michelle Kwan with President Karen Gross at the Salute to Girls and Women in Sports.


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SVC joins New England Collegiate Conference Southern Vermont College has joined the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC), two years after leaving the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) to compete as an NCAA Division III independent and to seek a more appropriate athletic conference. “We are honored and delighted to be joining the NECC in its inaugural season,” said Southern Vermont College President Karen Gross. “We look forward to the experience our studentathletes will have as part of this conference and to welcoming conference teams to SVC’s athletic venues.” The Mountaineers will compete in 9 of the 12 NECC sports for conference championships starting in the fall of 2008: baseball, men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s soccer, softball and volleyball. SVC also sponsors men’s volleyball as a varsity sport.

“I’m ecstatic to be entering into an NCAA conference with the competitive reputation of the schools that we will be playing against,” said Benjamin Kozik, Southern Vermont College Director of Athletics. “We’ve been working hard as a staff to move Southern Vermont College athletics in the right direction, and this is a big step toward our goal of making SVC a nationally respected athletic program. Our athletes are looking forward to once again competing for conference championships and the opportunity to go to the NCAA playoffs. It’s a good feeling to know that other schools in the conference believe in what we are doing here at SVC, and I’m looking forward to working with them and having our teams compete against them.” Founding members of the New England Collegiate Conference include Bay Path College of Longmeadow,

Mass.; Becker College of Leicester, Mass.; Daniel Webster College of Nashua, N.H.; Elms College of Chicopee, Mass.; Lesley University of Cambridge, Mass.; Mitchell College of New London, Conn.; Newbury College of Brookline, Mass.; and Wheelock College of Boston, Mass. “Southern Vermont College’s recent renewed commitment to athletics is evident with their recent hiring of a full-time athletic director and several

Director of Athletics Benjamin Kozik and President Karen Gross officially accept SVC’s invitation to join the New England Collegiate Conference. new full-time coaching positions,” said NECC Commissioner Louise McCleary. “The College is also a natural fit to the NECC as a small, private, four-year college with similar athletic and academic philosophies.”

Pictured above is the 2008 Southern Vermont College baseball team, in a photo taken during spring training in Florida: In the front row, left to right: Dan Bosely, Tommy Snide, John Wallner, Kyle Hoseit, Dave Gage, Dan Cook; second row kneeling, left to right: Adam Northup, Brett Pawlak, Eric Gardner, Steve Nappi, Will Foland, Kevin Warner; back row: Head Coach Don Schaffer, Josh Fanion, Tim Johnson, Coach Ethan Kipnes, Coach Tim Penrod. SVC/SJC CHRONICLE

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Meder Discovery Fund provides students with academic assistance Southern Vermont College has announced that the Meder Discovery Fund, made possible through the estate of the late Dr. Albert Meder, trustee emeritus, will provide more than $400,000 for academic support services over the next 7-9 years. The funds will open doors for students where severe financial limitations might otherwise limit their prospects for academic and future career success.

tory dinner and hosting families, public officials and civic leaders.

Financial aid counseling services on campus For several years, SVC had outsourced financial aid counseling, but in an effort to better serve first-

generation college students and those with the most financial need, as well as to boost enrollment and improve retention, the College has restored the Financial Aid Office on campus. Supported by the Meder Discovery Fund, this effort provides the personalized attention needed by our students and their parents, who often do not have experience in the complex process of financing a college education. Dr. Albert Meder’s generosity and the fund that bears his name will help students who otherwise may not have been able to benefit from the unique education that Southern Vermont College provides. To contribute to this continued success, please contact the Office of Institutional Advancement at 802-447-6327.

Learning tools The Meder Discovery Fund will assist students in the purchase of textbooks, which, in areas such as nursing, can cost as much as $800 per semester. These funds will also be used to purchase copies of the most expensive and instrumental textbooks for select courses to be placed on reserve in the College Library’s Reference Room for students who have not purchased their own copy.

Academic advances and faculty initiatives In the fall of 2007, SVC launched a new required course for all first-year students called “Quest for Success: The First Year Experience.” The eight sections of the course enable students to become acquainted with the Bennington region by partnering with such venues as Hildene, the American Chestnut Foundation and the Vermont Veterans’ Home. Support from the Meder Fund will provide assistance with course materials and transportation expenses. The Meder funds will also help SVC enhance its annual Honors Convocation, adding a formal celebra-

SVC appoints three new trustees

tice in Bennington. Before opening her practice she was a partner at Bennington Family Practice. Before coming to Bennington she volunteered at the free clinic in Camden, S.C. Scattergood earned her medical degree from Albert Einstein School of Medicine at Yeshiva University in Bronx, N.Y., and attended the College of Medicine and Dentistry at Rutgers University in New Jersey. She completed her residency at the Department of Family Practice at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. In addition, Scattergood received her bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. She is married to former SVC Trustee Peter Donavan.

Ira Wagner has been the Executive Vice President

Joan Axinn, Ira Wagner ’83, and Dr. Nancy Scattergood

Southern Vermont College has named Joan


Axinn of Port Washington, N.Y., Dr. Nancy Scattergood of Bennington, Vt., and Ira Wagner ’83 of Bethesda, Md., to its Board of Trustees. The appointments were confirmed at the College’s September board meeting.

of law is symbolized by the Joan Axinn Hofstra Law School Clinics building. In 1992, she ran for Congress in New York’s Fourth District, and lost by 200 votes out of 23,000 cast. Like her husband, Donald, Axinn is a licensed pilot.

A graduate of Hofstra University in 1950, Joan Axinn

Board certified in family practice, Dr. Scattergood has

received her Juris Doctor degree from Hofstra University Law School in 1976. In between, she had been active in the Adlai Stevenson presidential campaign, a Wall Street broker and a social worker with the Nassau County Department of Social Services. And her extraordinary dedication to service and to the school

been a member of the medical staff at Southwestern Vermont Medical Center since 1983 and presently is filling in part time at Northshire Medical Center in Manchester, Vt. Scattergood also serves on the review team of child sexual abuse cases in Bennington. Previously, Scattergood maintained a private prac-

and Chief Operating Officer of American Capital, a publicly traded buyout and mezzanine fund with capital resources exceeding $16 billion, since 2001. A 1983 alumnus of SVC, Wagner received his MBA at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1985. In 2005, he received the Distinguished Alumni Award at Southern Vermont College’s Commencement ceremony in recognition of his career, community service and personal achievements. With more than 25 years experience as an investment banker and entrepreneur, Wagner began his career by starting Overseas Auto Parts, a distributor of foreign car parts, in Brattleboro, Vt., in 1975, which he sold in 1982. After graduating from UNC, he became the first employee of American Capital in early 1986. In 1988, he left the company to join MONY Capital Markets, a specialty investment firm which was a subsidiary of Mutual of New York. In 1997, Wagner rejoined ACAS as a Principal and was named Chief Operating Officer in 2001.


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New academic programs: A roadmap for change By Karen Gross

Prof. Tom Redden teaches political science and history, with a focus on international relations. (Right) Patricia Wrightsman, chair of the Nursing Division, will help craft the curriculum for the new healthcare initiative.

The College has three new academic programs in development, all of which are designed to link the real world with the classroom. For students, experiential learning is an important way to achieve academically — learning by doing and linking theory and practice. It is an educative approach that is grounded in reality but recognizes that the need to develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills if students are to become successful leaders in the workplace.

Build the Enterprise A new initiative slated for introduction in the fall is “Build the Enterprise,” a program that lets students design, implement and then run a business while they are in school. Please see the article on page 1 of this Chronicle edition for a more detailed description of this program. Let me just add that Build the Enterprise is an effort to animate the classroom. It is intended to reach across student populations as students from a wide range of disciplines can work together to create enterprise teams. It is the program’s purpose to have students learn to work together and to appreciate the importance and value of teamwork in achieving success. All teams will be assisted by both SVC faculty and a team of mentors drawn from alumni and the community, and even before the program is in place, individuals have volunteered to be mentors. The Bennington County Industrial Corporation has agreed to award a $1,500 annual prize to that enterprise judged the most successful. The first cohort to start Build the Enterprise will arrive on campus in Fall 2008. Some currently enrolled students will be permitted to participate – so we will have both first-year and upper-level students working on new enterprises.

Healthcare navigation and advocacy specialists Currently, SVC has strong Nursing and Radiologic Technology programs. Slightly more than one-third

of the overall SVC student population is engaged in healthcare studies, and due to demand by prospective students and employers, we expect this number to increase. However, there are current and prospective students who are interested in healthcare but do not want careers in hands-on patient care. In addition, there are students who begin their college career with plans to study nursing or radiologic technology but change their minds as the program progresses – whether for academic or personal reasons. To meet these student needs and growing workforce needs in healthcare, SVC is developing a third prong to our healthcare division. This course of study will produce students who will work on helping individuals, families and organizations deal with the healthcare system more effectively; these newly trained individuals will be able to work in varied settings: nursing homes, hospitals, doctors’ offices, small clinics, insurance companies, businesses, pharmaceutical companies and offices of aging. With an aging population and an increasingly complex administrative landscape in health services, we need individuals who can provide support to providers and who can help individuals and their families navigate the healthcare, insurance and pharmaceutical terrain. In addition to training in healthcare, these students will be trained in the many issues that are encompassed within the healthcare system: psychology, economics, management, pharmacy, law, dispute resolution, negotiation and communications. We need individuals who have interdisciplinary skills, and SVC is committed to a cross-disciplinary approach to training new healthcare specialists. Students in this program will be given an in-depth view of healthcare in the U.S., as well as specialized knowledge in healthcare insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, state-run programs and private health insurance. With SVC’s liberal arts core, they will also have sufficient exposure to writing, math, macroeconomics, environmental studies, philosophy and ethics. They will also gain hands-on experience through supervised practica in a variety of healthcare settings. Our proposed launch of the program will be spring or fall of 2009. The SVC program will partner with other institutions to leverage resources, attract new students, conduct research, garner faculty and produce individuals ready to tackle the healthcare issues of tomorrow. Anticipated partners include Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, University of Vermont Center on Aging, The Memory Clinic and Albany (N.Y.) College of Pharmacy

International awareness Because of the globalized marketplace, students should learn to appreciate the extent to which internationalization will affect their careers without the necessity of spending a whole semester abroad. There are several directions that this program could take: intensive language institutes on campus, flip programs where SVC students visit a foreign university to enroll shorttime in a particular academic program (think about criminal justice in England) and then students in that foreign nation would visit SVC to study the same area. These types of “flips” will engage students with others studying similar material abroad and it will allow students in both venues to have links with each other that are short-term but have long-term potential. Another option is to structure short-term academic programs for groups of SVC students to foreign locations (January term, March vacation, summers), led by current faculty who have international connections.

With an aging population and an increasingly complex administrative landscape in health services, we need individuals who can provide support to providers and who can help individuals and their families navigate the healthcare, insurance and pharmaceutical terrain.

Southern Vermont College has an opportunity to educate the leaders of tomorrow in ways that larger institutions cannot do – at least not as easily. SVC can provide personalized learning that is responsive to current issues, that enables students to work in the local community with local leaders and that permits early engagement and participation. The College’s success as an educational institution should not be measured alone on the basis of the qualifications of our students upon entry into college. Instead, success can be demonstrated by the quality of leaders SVC students become upon graduation. The initiatives described above are concrete efforts to be introduced over the next 18 months. They are intended to attract new students, improve retention of existing students and provide a prototype for other small colleges as they seek to thrive in today’s educational landscape.

Visit the new Southern Vermont College website at: SVC/SJC CHRONICLE

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Class Notes Announcements Christine Koehler Junghans ’78 is living in South Carolina and has been in the pharmaceutical industry for almost 28 years as a Director of Operations. She also has her N.C. Real Estate License and will be moving into financial planning. Her daughter, Brittany, is studying Elementary Education at the University of Central Florida and the University of North Carolina, and her son Matt is a high school senior and plays varsity football.

New England Collegiate Baseball League. The team lost in the playoffs but at one time was ranked as high as sixth in the country among all collegiate summer teams.

Katherine Gibson Compton ’98 and her husband, Todd, welcomed their first child,Todd Christian, on October 18, 2007. He weighed 7 lbs. 7 oz. and was 19.5 inches long. The Comptons live in Lynn, Mass., where Katherine is an x-ray technologist in Gloucester, Mass.

Michael Lawler ’99 was nominated for the Dave Poles ’95 works as a Substance Abuse Counselor at Saint Elizabeth’s Medical Center in Boston, Mass. He also has a part-time private practice where he works with adolescents and adults to help them overcome their addictions, manage their moods, set goals and get motivated. He is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor and a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor. To learn more, visit

Chad Levesque ’97 has been named Assistant Baseball Coach at American International College (AIC) in Springfield, Mass. AIC is a Division II program and is a member of the Northeast 10 Conference. Chad is the Academic Supervisor for the team. Last summer, he was also an Assistant Coach with the Holyoke Giants of the

Outstanding Teacher award given by the University of Vermont College of Education and Social Services for creating the law enforcement program at the Southwestern Vermont Career Development Center. Lawler previously worked at the Warren County Sheriff’s Department in Lake George, N.Y., and joined the Bennington County Sheriff’s Department in 1999. He is pursuing an M.Ed. at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt.

Anne Adams ’01, second from left

Chris Davis ’99 and his wife, Megan, welcomed their first child, Emma Christian, on December 20, 2007. She weighed 6 lbs. 10 ozs. and was 20 inches long. The Davis family lives in Guilderland, N.Y., where Chris is a Configuration Management Analyst for the New York ISO.

Charles Beekman ’02, Jeff Burke ’96, Marcus Fefee ’05 and Scott Fruscio ’96 returned to campus in January for the annual alumni basketball game.

Dan Dix ’03 was profiled on the Great Northeast Anne Adams ’01 is a member of the Quaboag Highlanders Pipes & Drums, based in Monson, Mass. The band participated in the Bennington Battle Day celebration in August 2007.

Athletic Conference (GNAC) Web site this past November in a feature called, “Where are they now?” GNAC is highlighting former studentathletes who not only achieved success in the

Engagements &Weddings

Dubois photo by Juniata Sports Information

Jennifer Dimock ’97 is engaged to Brian Flanagan, and they are planning a Spring 2009 wedding. Jennifer lives in Bridgeport, Conn., and works for the Barnes and Noble bookstore at Southern Connecticut State University as a Bookseller. Brian is pursuing a master’s degree in School Counseling at Southern Connecticut State University. He is the assistant head teacher for ChildLink, a before- and after-school program for children K-5 at Jennings Elementary School in Fairfield, Conn.


Amy Walker ’00 is engaged to Ryan Gleason; they are planning a September 2008 wedding. Amy lives in Redondo Beach, Calif., and works in Entertainment Marketing for Mattel. Ryan is a graduate of Pratt Institute and is also employed at Mattel as a Hot Wheels package designer. Anne Marie Nixon ’02 married Dr. Patrick Tharrett on September 15, 2007, in Plattsburgh N.Y., on Lake Champlain. Professor Tom Redden of Southern Vermont College officiated. Anne Marie is the Director of Social Therapy at a private practice in New Jersey and is currently completing the dissertation portion of her Ph.D. Patrick is a school psychologist and works in the Mount Olive School District. The couple resides in Basking Ridge, N.J.

Mac Muniz ’98 married Melanie Griswold on July 21, 2007, at the Old First Church in Bennington. The ceremony was followed by a reception at the Mount Anthony Country Club. SVC Professor Tom Redden, an ordained Buddhist priest, marries Anne Marie Nixon ’02 and Dr. Patrick Tharrett on the shores of Lake Champlain.


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athletic environment but who have gone on to successful post-graduation careers. Among his numerous awards, Dan was a 3-time GNAC Cross Country Champion (1999, 2000 and 2001). After graduating from SVC, he was hired as a Project Scientist for All4 Inc. (, a small environmental consulting firm that specializes in air quality. Amy Marquise ’05 began attending Sage Graduate School in January. She is pursuing a degree in business.

SHARE YOUR NEWS! To submit an item for Class Notes: please call 802-447-6357 or log on to Dan Dix ’03 competing in a cross-country competition while an SVC student.

IN MEMORIAM Helen Kenney Proud ’32, age 92, passed away on November 15, 2007. Born in Bennington, she was a graduate of the Pleasant Valley School and later St. Joseph Business College. In earlier years, she worked in various insurance offices and as a telephone operator at New England Telephone and in the post office at Bennington College. After raising her children, she worked with her husband at Adams Clothes Shop and was in charge of the ladies department. She loved to dance and to travel. Assunta Caslin ’34 passed away on January 6, 2008, at the age of 89. “Sonny” was born in Shaftsbury, Vt., and received her education in Bennington where she attended Saint Francis de Sales Academy and St. Joseph Business College. She was employed at various mills, including the Union Carbide Corporation, EZ Mill and Flint and Robbins. In 1983, she retired from the Bijur Lubricating Company. She enjoyed bowling and bingo. She loved Dean Martin and the New York Yankees. Virginia M. Jotikasthira ’44 died on December 20, 2007, at the age of 84. She was born in Bennington and worked for the United States Foreign Service for many years. She traveled extensively throughout the world and met her husband in Thailand. They resided in England for 11 years, where their daughter was born. She enjoyed gardening, sewing, painting, crafts and writing. June Shultz ’54 died on October 27, 2007. She was 74. She was born and raised in Bennington and graduated from St. Joseph Business College. She worked as a secretary for the Town of Nahant, Mass., Public Works Department for many years

before retiring in 1992. She was active in youth activities and enjoyed the outdoors, gardening, traveling and fishing. Charles F. “Fred” Parsons ’68, a resident of Feeding Hills, Mass., passed away on April 20, 2007, at age 72. He earned an associate’s degree in Accounting from St. Joseph College. Patricia Rich Snow ’78 died on December 21, 2007, after a short but gallant fight against cancer. She was born in Gardner, Maine, and graduated from the Central Maine General Hospital School of Nursing in Lewistown in 1950. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in healthcare management from Southern Vermont College in 1978. Patricia worked as a nurse at several hospitals in Maine, Vermont and New York before becoming Director of Utilization Review for the Adirondack Professional Service Review Organization and later Director of Utilization Management for New York State employees at Blue Cross/Blue Shield in Albany. Patricia loved traveling, viewing the birds around her yard, the Christmas holiday season and spending time with her grandchildren. Jeanne Cahalan ’86 died on September 12, 2007. Before attending SVC, she received her nursing degree at Long Island Hospital in Boston. In earlier years, she was employed at the U.S. Naval Hospital in Newport, R.I., and then spent time in the Job Corps. She later worked in rehabilitation and long-term care on a part-time basis. She loved animals and was an avid reader. She also enjoyed baking, fishing and the Boston Red Sox.

age 84. She was raised above Yott’s Market, the store that her father built, on the corner of Safford and Gage Streets. She attended the Traphagen School of Fashion in New York City for one year until World War II began. After returning to Bennington, she enrolled at St. Joseph Business College, where she received an associate’s degree in Secretarial Studies. She was employed at Tansitor Electronics, St. Joseph Business College and Mount Anthony Junior High School until her retirement in 1988. She loved annual trips to Maine, knitting, and crossword puzzles. Her greatest joy was having dinner with the whole family.

Phyllis M. Bugbee Morse passed away on September 26, 2007, at age 87. She served on the College’s Board of Trustees and, with her husband, established a scholarship to assist with the payment of books for deserving students who are active in the campus community. Morse was the head cook at the Bennington Catamount Elementary School and Bennington High School. She had served as the state president of the School Food Service. She loved the ocean and maintained a second home in Maine where she spent many enjoyable summers. She also enjoyed league bowling, the outdoors, gardening and farm life. Memorial gifts in memory of Mrs. Morse may be made to either Southern Vermont College or the Bennington Rescue Squad in care of the Hanson-Walbridge Funeral Home, 213 West Main Street, Bennington, VT 05201.

Annette Yott Burgess, a longtime resident of Bennington, passed away on September 27, 2007, at SVC/SJC CHRONICLE

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Reunion is great friends, fond memories and a chance to learn something new about Southern Vermont College. Preview the schedule of events on page 3.

Visit for more information, or contact Alumni Relations at 802-447-6357 or

address correction requested 802-447-6357 982 Mansion Drive Bennington, VT 05201-6002

SOUTHERN VERMONT COLLEGE Office of Development and Alumni Relations

Bennington, VT 05201 Permit No. 85

PAID Non-Profit Organization U.S. Postage



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Southern Vermont College Chronicle Spring 2008  

News and information from the Southern Vermont-St. Joseph College Community

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