Saifa Hussain.


Ten O’Clock Ross


The Student Government Association announced on Monday that 10 o’clock Ross would be suspended until April 2. The announcement also warned that the program would be suspended for the remainder of the semester and reevaluated for fall semester viability if issues persist, citing staff concerns with cleanliness and general disarray. The suspension of the program is the result of a mutual agreement with all of Dining Services.

“The dining room has been left in a horrible condition,” said Brent Simons, Ross Commons dining room manager, “Napkins strewn about. Melted ice cream on counters and tables, silverware strewn about, messes on floors, equipment tampered with (mainly the frozen yogurt machine which is an expensive piece of machinery), cooler, food items have also been stolen, cereal, ice cream, allergen free food products etc.”

Since its launch in fall 2015, the program has faced multiple sanctions due to violations to Ross Dining’s alcohol consumption policy. In addition, there have been reports in the past of students stealing tubs of ice cream and boxes of tea.

“Students can help by cleaning up after themselves as much as possible and by notifying a student monitor when liquids are spilled,” Laura Castillo ’19, director of institutional affairs said. “This would demonstrate our respect and value for our Middlebury staff who come in early in the morning to set up for breakfast.”

According to SGA President Jin Sohn, SGA is currently working with Ross Dining and Dining services to improve communications and discuss future plans for 10 o’clock Ross. Students can contribute to the solution by responding to the survey included in the announcement with their Middlebury email account.

Squirrel Electrocuted

Nearby students witnessed a small explosion outside of Voter Hall on Monday. The incident was caused by a squirrel attempting to climb from the telephone pole positioned on the north side of Voter Hall to a power line.

The pole, which carries high voltage wires, had three transformers fixated to its top. During the squirrel’s commute, the circuit of one transformer was disrupted, forcing it to ground itself and discharge its electricity to the nearby neutrally-charged squirrel. Nearby students heard a loud bang.

The sudden discharge also caused a safety fuse to open, shortly knocking out power to Voter Hall. However, the Voter emergency generator automatically activated, providing auxiliary power to the building.

According to Luther Tenny, assistant director of Facilities Services, Green Mountain Power was immediately notified. Line power was restored by 1:15 p.m. to Voter Hall.

No other buildings were affected by the incident. However, Luther said, “I’m afraid the squirrel did not survive.”

College Hires Associate Chaplain & Muslim Advisor

Saifa Hussain will join the Scott Center for Religious Life on March 19 as the new associate chaplain and Muslim advisor. She will fill the position that was formerly held by Beau Scurich and Naila Baloch until their departure last year. Scurich left to begin work in hospital chaplaincy and Naila to begin her graduate studies.

Hussain was a student at DePaul University where she led the Muslim Student Association before becoming an active community organizer in both Chicago and Vermont. In Chicago she was involved in social justice organizing and in Vermont she participated in spiritual community organizing related to sustainability efforts. She has also worked with Ahle Bayt Institute to lead a hajj for diverse Muslims.

In a campus wide email sent on Monday, March 12, Mark R. Orten, director of the Scott Center, wrote that the center is looking forward to welcoming her to campus. According to Orten, a former supervisor in describing Hussain said she “stands out among many with her rare combination of intelligence and heart. She is truly exceptional.”

With Hussain’s experience in student programming, activism and her articulation of her Muslim identity, the Scott Center hopes to build up its resources for their Muslim Student Association. It also hopes to create larger discussions around the tenets of Islam in the broader college community and beyond.

Orten wrote in his email, “We look to her to infuse a wise religious voice into current discussions around campus, the nation and the world.”