The Middlebury Campus

Riley Board

Riley Board, Managing Editor

Riley Board '22 is a managing editor.

She previously served as a News Editor, Arts & Academics Editor, staff writer, and Community Council correspondent.

Board is majoring in Linguistics as an Independent Scholar.

In the summer of 2020, she worked as an intern at the Burlington Free Press, reporting on the Vermont community and publishing articles for the USA Today Network. Board previously worked as a media intern at the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage and as a research and analysis intern for the World Factbook.

Twitter: @rileygboard

All content by Riley Board
The College and the Institute

The College and the Institute

January 28, 2021
Since 2005, Middlebury College has been affiliated with its graduate school for international studies in California, a leader in anti-terrorism and nonproliferation studies and language teaching. But the road to integration between the institutions has been rocky, and concerns about MIIS’ financial situation and “fit” with the college persist among faculty and staff. This series explores the history of Middlebury and Monterey, and the nature of their relationship today.
Part 6: Looking Ahead

Part 6: Looking Ahead

January 27, 2021
With the failure of the faculty motion, faculty and staff at both schools must learn how to better connect with their counterparts. Many are optimistic that the pandemic and its technological shifts will enable better collaboration and community.
Part 5: Lost in Translation

Part 5: Lost in Translation

January 27, 2021
While the faculty motion cites budgetary concerns in its opposition to MIIS, supporters of Monterey suggest deeper cultural forces are at play. Different personal and professional experiences with the Institute inform vastly different opinions on the role of MIIS with the College.
Part 4: Making Waves Out West

Part 4: Making Waves Out West

January 27, 2021
As news of the faculty vote reached Monterey, many faculty members were disheartened. Although today the institute is very much a part of the college, and after painful austerity measures, the faculty vote was a harsh reminder of how some at the college feel about the graduate school.
Part 3: Show Me The Money

Part 3: Show Me The Money

January 27, 2021
A central component of the faculty motion was concern about the Institute’s financial standing, and its drain on the college; further investigation into the realities of MIIS’ budget reveal a far more nuanced situation.
Part 2: California Dreamin’

Part 2: California Dreamin’

January 27, 2021
The acquisition of MIIS was the project of former College President Ronald Liebowitz. Liebowitz’s sometimes contradictory statements have been cited by proponents of the faculty motion as misrepresentative of what eventually became the acquisition of the institute.
Part 1: An Unstable Spring

Part 1: An Unstable Spring

January 27, 2021
In the Spring of 2020, Covid-19 economic uncertainty further destabilized the college’s already precarious financial standing. As a result, discontented college faculty members suggested that the school disassociate from MIIS in order to protect the financial future of the college.
Notes from the Desk: An issue for an election like no other

Notes from the Desk: An issue for an election like no other

October 29, 2020
This is why we’re publishing an election issue. 
For Dave Silberman, forgotten high bailiff position offers new kind of platform

For Dave Silberman, forgotten high bailiff position offers new kind of platform

October 29, 2020
Addison County Democratic nominee Silberman has two goals: informing people that the elected position of High Bailiff exists, and convincing them that it’s a role for civilian oversight rather than law enforcement officials.
All students will be invited back for the spring 2021 semester, according to an Oct. 8 announcement from the college. J-Term will be remote, and the spring semester will have a delayed start, with classes beginning March 1.

Middlebury to hold delayed on-campus spring semester, remote J-Term

October 8, 2020

This is a developing story and will be updated accordingly.  Middlebury plans to welcome all students back to campus for the spring semester. Students will arrive on Feb. 24 and 25 after a two-week...

An outbreak of 26 new Covid-19 cases in Addison County is contained to Champlain Orchards in Shoreham. State health officials say that students and the public are not at risk.

BREAKING: Covid-19 outbreak of 26 cases in Addison County linked to Champlain Orchards

October 5, 2020

UPDATE: Oct. 7  An additional Champlain Orchards employee has tested positive for Covid-19, bringing the total up to 27. On the afternoon of Oct. 5, College Physician Mark Peluso told students...

Happy Valley Orchards, a popular fall spot, is one of the places students will have access to in Phase 2.

Phase Two start date pushed to Thursday, Sept. 17

September 15, 2020

The next period in the college’s “phased approach” to a safe reopening will be pushed back to Thursday, Sept. 17, two days after it was originally planned to begin. Phase Two allows for greater...

Middlebury has announced plans for students to return to campus in the fall, with various health protocols and a portion of classes online.

BREAKING: Middlebury announces on-campus instruction for the fall

June 22, 2020
Middlebury will reopen its campus to students, faculty and staff in the fall with certain precautions. The College plans to welcome students back on September 8 for a 12-week semester, which will continue without interruption until Thanksgiving Break, before a transition to remote learning.
As students await the Monday, June 22 announcement from administrators about whether next fall will be in-person or remote, The Campus looks at what — even if the campus reopens in the fall — will be different about daily life at Middlebury.

What could a mid-pandemic semester at Middlebury look like?

June 18, 2020
As students count down the days until the college’s announcement about procedures for next year, we look at how, even in a best case scenario, life at Middlebury would be altered in the fall.
Notes from the desk: Racism, journalism and our role

Notes from the desk: Racism, journalism and our role

June 3, 2020

The death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officers and the other acts of cruelty and merciless killing we have seen are but a sliver of the full scope of the systemic and constant...

BENJY RENTON
Middlebury trustees promise to match charitable contributions of any amount with $100 in personal donations.

Trustees to match any college donation with $100 through the end of June

May 30, 2020
The matching donations will support the Student Emergency Fund, the Fund for Staff Support, and the Financial Aid Fund, among others.
Large number of students have considered transferring from Middlebury

Large number of students have considered transferring from Middlebury

May 7, 2020
While only an average of 15 to 20 students transfer out of Middlebury in a given year, Zeitgeist data from this fall shows that 43% percent of survey respondents, or 451 students, have considered transferring during their time at the college.
Students feel intellectually stimulated at Middlebury; mental health top reason for skipping class

Students feel intellectually stimulated at Middlebury; mental health top reason for skipping class

May 7, 2020
Students cited mental health as the most common reason for skipping class, with mental health being the cause of 23% of missed classes, followed by feeling overwhelmed by assignments, 21% of the time.
Who started Proc Crush Lists, anyway?

Who started Proc Crush Lists, anyway?

April 22, 2020
We tracked down the student behind the Middlebury tradition, which started in 2005.
With students expected to defer from studying abroad this fall, questions remain regarding housing.

College expands on plans to house a larger volume of students 

April 16, 2020
The college is anticipating housing more students than usual on campus this fall, citing uncertainties about study abroad enrollment, not an anticipated greater class of first-year students.
Students perused brochures and chatted with college faculty at a study abroad fair last fall.

As world shuts down, sophomores rethink fall semesters abroad

April 16, 2020
In a normal year, over half of Middlebury’s junior class studies abroad. Next year will likely be different.
Conditions permitting, the college plans to conduct a three-to-five day senior celebration in mid-to-late August to replace Senior Week.

Senior committee looks to on-campus commencement and Senior Week celebration

April 16, 2020
Plans are already underway for a three-to-five day senior celebration in mid-to-late August to replace Senior Week, CDC guidelines permitting.
A town road sign was torn from the ground and discarded outside of Twilight Hall on the night of Thursday, March 12, two days after students were notified that they would be required to evacuate campus.

Vandalism spikes as students prepare to leave campus

March 15, 2020
Normally, two employees must walk the campus twice a week for two hours to clear the campus of trash and hazards outside. On Thursday and Friday, it took teams of five entire days.
Lucia Evans ’05 on Midd, #MeToo

Lucia Evans ’05 on Midd, #MeToo

February 13, 2020
Lucia Evans ’05 was one of the first to bring legal charges against Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein. The alleged assault took place the summer before her senior year at Middlebury.
Left to right: A hole ripped in the hallway of Allen Hall, a chair broken in the Chateau basement and a broken soap dispenser in the Chateau. Students were charged in their tuition bills for damages such as these that occured in the fall.

Students charged for damages incurred during the fall semester

January 23, 2020
Damages in Atwater during the fall totaled almost $6,000, an unprecedented amount for a single semester.
Several students posted and shared photos of the stickers on social media, circling the QR code that could be used to access the white nationalist group’s website.

Stickers advertising white supremacist organization found on campus and in town

January 23, 2020
The Community Bias Response Team named the incident in an all-school email, but chose not to identify the specific group. Public Safety has opened in investigation, but does not expect to identify any perpetrator.
Stanley Sloan has been teaching Winter Term classes at the college since 2005. This weekend, he became the subject of a national media storm when he was disinvited from speaking at a NATO conference in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Middlebury visiting scholar disinvited from speaking at NATO conference

December 10, 2019
Stanley Sloan believes that his critiques of President Donald Trump over Twitter led to the cancellation of his talk.
A spruce tree was uprooted outside of 75 Shannon Street.

It’s a tough year to be a tree as vandalism spikes

November 21, 2019
There have already been $2,000 worth of damages to campus trees this fall.
Signs from outside the RAJ and Carr Hall were knocked down by students. The repairs, which will require welding the metal bases of the signs, will cost hundreds of dollars, and put additional strain on an already understaffed facilities department.

Facilities department reflect on burden to staff, seeks solutions as property damage continues

November 14, 2019
On Monday, Oct. 14, only five weeks into this year, the total residential damage cost for the year came out to about $2,500. If destruction continues at this rate for the remainder of the school year, that could mean somewhere around an unprecedented $16,000 in residential hall damages.
2019 Fall Profile shows increases in students of color and from southern states at Middlebury

2019 Fall Profile shows increases in students of color and from southern states at Middlebury

November 7, 2019
The current student body is the least-white in Middlebury history, with 26% students of color.

First trustee meeting addresses ‘BLUEprint’ commons system changes, student-faculty relationship and more

October 31, 2019
Trustees visited campus for their first meeting of the academic year, mingled with staff and stuff and discussed the Board agenda.
Broken bottles and trash in Atwater B, phalluses drawn in an elevator, ripped and stolen signs in Allen Hall, torn-down and broken emergency lights in Starr Hall, and urine in an elevator of Atwater B are just some of the deliberate damages done to residence halls by students so far this fall. Some significant property damage has occurred every weekend of this school year.

Students steal signs, urinate in elevators and damage property

October 10, 2019
Thousands of dollars of destruction in Atwater and other buildings across campus burdens custodial staff and sparks conversation.
McCullough Student Center could be torn down, renovated or expanded in a long-term plan to create a more vibrant student center.

Administration opens conversation on new student center, Battell renovations

September 26, 2019
“Battell renovation is not a myth anymore,” said Dean of Student Baishakhi Taylor said. “We are seriously looking into it. Everyone talks about it, it’s time.”
A display at Mobil gas station in the town of Middlebury offers tobacco and e-cigarette products, which are now no longer available for purchase for customers under 21 years old.

New Vermont law bans tobacco and vaping under 21

September 19, 2019

For Vermont residents under 21, the use, possession and purchase of tobacco products and nicotine delivery systems is no longer legal in the state. The college’s newly-expanded Health and Wellness...

Vijayakumar consults with a senate member during a student government meeting last Sunday.

SGA President Vijayakumar is ready to lead: here’s what she has to say

September 12, 2019
Incoming SGA president Varsha Vijayakumar focused her platform on putting student interests first. Now, it’s to put her plans into action.
Alone Together at Middlebury

Alone Together at Middlebury

May 2, 2019

More than 200 students answered the question: “What makes you feel othered at Middlebury?” Responses addressed socio-economic status, race and ethnicity, athletics, sexuality and other subjects, shedding...

Each of the five participants in a student panel in Dana Auditorium discussing the Legutko controversy was tied to the week’s events in some way.

Student Panel Discusses Next Steps After Legutko Drama

May 2, 2019
A week after a lecture by Polish politician Ryszard Legutko was canceled by administrators, Quinn Boyle ’21 asked those gathered in Dana Auditorium for the “Moving Forward” panel discussion to turn to their neighbors and answer a question: What was at stake for you last week?
More Details On Legutko Lecture Cancellation; Professor Promises to Re-invite

More Details On Legutko Lecture Cancellation; Professor Promises to Re-invite

April 18, 2019

The college canceled a lecture by Ryszard Legutko, a controversial scholar and far right member of the European Parliament from Poland, on Wednesday, April 17. The email announcing the decision was signed...

Ryszard Legutko outside the Robert A. Jones '59 House on Wednesday

Legutko Still Speaks to Politics Class After Administration Cancels Public Lecture

April 17, 2019

Despite the cancellation of his public lecture earlier today amid what college administrators described as “safety concerns,” the right-wing Polish politician Ryszard Legutko still spoke on campus...

A poster for the Ryszard Legutko lecture, covered by a flier advertising his views on gay rights, in Davis Family Library.

College Braces for Right-Wing Speaker Accused of Homophobia

April 16, 2019

UPDATE — Wednesday, April 17: The college has canceled Legutko's lecture, citing security risks. Professor Keegan Callanan said he has already invited Legutko to speak again on campus next year. Click...

The Hebrew House behind the Davis Family Library on Franklin Street.

Hebrew Program to Lose its Only Professor in Fall

April 11, 2019
The college’s Hebrew program will no longer offer upper-level Hebrew classes on campus.
Grace Stimson ’19 (left) and Hannah Seabury ’19, Friday’s head Dolci chefs, brought the “Guilty Pleasures” dinner to life. “This is pretty much our dream meal,” Seabury said.

Behind the Scenes with Dolci

April 11, 2019

It’s 3 p.m. on a Friday afternoon and seniors Grace Stimson and Hannah Seabury are hard at work in the kitchen. They’ve been here all week, prepping and planning a dinner entitled “Guilty Pleasures”...

Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman,Phil Lord and Christopher Miller - Animated Feature - 'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse'
91st Annual Academy Awards, Press Room, Los Angeles, USA - 24 Feb 2019

Middlebury Alumni Win Big at Oscars

February 28, 2019
Brian Currie ’83 received his Oscars this Sunday after several awards for “Green Book” accumulated over the last several months.
Finalists of the 2019 second annual Spencer Prize in Oratory.

Second Annual Spencer Prize Contestants Talk Privilege, Identity

February 28, 2019
This year's Spencer Prize finalists connected a concept they learned in a Middlebury class to something they cared about.

Reel Critic: ‘Cold War’

February 21, 2019
'Cold War' makes stunning use of mirrors, in shots that had audience members faintly gasping.
Performers are staged in a tableau of Georges Seurat’s “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte.”

J-Term Musical Brings Color and Light to Town Hall Theater

February 14, 2019
The life of French impressionist Georges Seurat, served as the backdrop for a cast of 22 Middlebury College students and members of the Middlebury community to showcase their talents on the stage and behind it in the J-term musical “Sunday in the Park with George."
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