Library Hours Over Thanksgiving & The ILL book request deadline

Library Blog - November 20, 2015 - 12:08am

While the Library building will remain open during the Thanksgiving holiday, the Service Desk will have reduced hours.

Governor LeRoy Collins pardoning the Thanksgiving turkey in Tallahassee, Florida. 1957. State Library and Archives of Florida.

The Service Desk will close at 4:00pm on Tuesday, November 24th. Please plan in advance if you’d like to borrow reserves, DVDs, equipment, or pick up holds or ILLs before break!

The Service Desk, Reserve/AV Room, and Plan Room will reopen at 6:30pm on Sunday, November 29th. Regular hours will resume at that time.

The last day to request books or A/V materials via Interlibrary Loan this semester is Tuesday, December 1st. (You can keep requesting articles.)

Remember that even when you’re away from the library, you still have access to over 125,000 academic ebooks, 40,000 online journals, and dozens of research databases. When you use library resources off campus, if you’re prompted to log in, just use your Marlboro username and password.

Have a wonderful break!

Marlboro Deepens Commitment to Sustainability

Sustainability Updates - November 18, 2015 - 9:53am

Marlboro College has recently become a member of the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education to further campus efforts toward building a healthy and just world. Through membership in AASHE, Marlboro will receive support in advancing its sustainability initiatives throughout the institution and in the community.

“AASHE counts on the support of progressive institutions like Marlboro to fulfill its mission of facilitating leadership to transform our planet,” said Meghan Fay Zahniser, AASHE executive director. “As the gateways to knowledge, higher education institutions have a unique opportunity to make sustainability part of everyone’s agenda. I welcome Marlboro to our family of colleges, universities, associations, and businesses driving the transformation to a sustainable world.”

AASHE enables higher education institutions to meet their sustainability goals by providing specialized resources, professional development, and a network of peer support. Membership covers every individual at an institution, so the entire campus community can take advantage of member benefits.

“We are happy to join AASHE and expand on our active role within the higher education community, as we all work to advance sustainability,” said Todd Smith, Marlboro chemistry professor and chair of the Environmental Advisory Committee. “We encourage students, faculty, and staff to visit the AASHE site and take advantage of the member-only resources to support ongoing campus efforts like the community farm, recycling, composting, energy conservation, and the Real Food Challenge.”

Trip to the UMass Amherst Libraries this Sunday!

Library Blog - November 18, 2015 - 6:59am

This Sunday, November 22nd, the Library is sponsoring the second van trip of the semester to the UMass Amherst Libraries. Space is limited! Sign up on the sheet at the Library Research Bar.

The van will leave the Dining Hall at 11:30am and return by 5:30pm.

While at UMass, you can search their hundreds of databases and download or scan articles from their extensive journal holdings (e-journal list; library catalog). If you are a Massachusetts resident, you can get a library card and borrow books; if not, you can jot down any book titles that look useful and request them via Marlboro’s Interlibrary Loan service.

RBA at the Vermont Creative Network Summit

Center for New Leadership - November 11, 2015 - 9:42am

by Hillary Boone, Organizational Development Specialist at the Marlboro College Center for New Leadership.


Last week, almost 200 people descended onto the campus of the Vermont College of Fine Arts to learn, network, and workshop the emerging Vermont Creative Network (VCN). The VCN is a burgeoning collective impact initiative that has been modeled after successful Vermont models like Farm to Plate. It intends to bolster and develop the creative economy in Vermont.


The Vermont Arts Council has been a leader in the work. “I envision an opportunity for a broad variety of Vermonters to come together for a single purpose of using creativity as the vehicle for making life better for all,” said Executive Director Alex Aldrich.


I was selected to attend the conference and present about Results-Based Accountability with a focus on performance measurement. Over 20 people joined the session, to learn about RBA, and work together develop performance metrics for arts organizations.


Some of the key thinking that emerged from the group:


  • It is possible to measure “better offs” for arts programs designed to use arts as a therapeutic tool, or with the purpose of helping people. For example, returning soldiers exposed to the arts may report an increased ability to talk about their experiences or trauma.
  • It is harder to measure “better offs” for programs intrinsically designed to share the arts with large audiences. How does one measure the effect of a local theatre on the surrounding community? On the patrons? What is the value of the symphony? To me, the challenges raised by these organizations were similar to the struggles that advocacy organizations can have with metrics. How do we ensure that we don’t lose sight of long-range goals in favor of short-term impacts? How do we concretely measure our influence, when it is diffuse by nature?
  • It is imperative that the creative economy shows up in the Vermont State Outcomes and Indicators. There is work to be done in making the case that a rich arts community contributes to a vibrant quality of life in Vermont towns.


Vermont Creative Network

Funds for Collaboration

Center for New Leadership - November 9, 2015 - 2:32pm

By Kate Jellema, Associate Dean for Graduate & Professional Studies and Director of the Center for New Leadership at Marlboro College.

“How can we mobilize resources to support high-impact cross-sector collaborative work?” This was the central question posed during “Fundraising for Collaborative Initiatives,” the panel Kate Jellema moderated at the Association for Fundraising Professionals Northern New England conference at Stowe this week.


Although we are seeing the impact of many successful large-scale social change initiatives around the world, our funding mechanisms continue to favor requests from individual organizations running independent programs. Research shows that to be effective, collaborative efforts need time to mature and require dedicated administrative support, but it can be difficult to secure funding for trust-building, relationship cultivation, and the hard work of collaboration.


Collaboration entails a certain level of mystery, noted Janet McLaughlin of the Vermont Community Foundation: you cannot necessarily predict where the conversation of multiple partners might lead. As funders that means you have to build in time, patience, and a tolerance for the unexpected.


To build genuine collaboration, it is important to be forthright about the potential challenges and downsides as well as the possible opportunities, according to Jodi Clark of the Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation. Jodi described the importance of honest conversation to the creation of a tri-state collaboration that secured a half-million dollar federal Economic Development Administration grant.


Amy Carmola, Director of Community Impact for the United Way of Chittenden County, explored how funders might redesign their grantmaking process to provide the requisite time, space and freedom for the development of strong collaborative efforts. If funders issued ITPs: Invitations to Participate in a conversation about funding priorities instead of RFPs (Requests for Proposals) from individual agencies, what new forms of collaboration might develop?

The social sector has expanded well beyond traditional 501c3 organizations, according to Lauren-Glenn Davitian, Executive Director of Common Good Vermont. For example, some corporate philanthropists are charting their own pathways and may bypass traditional institutions altogether in their quest for high-impact social change. Crowdfunding, microloans, impact investing and pay-for-success might open new ways to finance social change initiatives.  


To mobilize traditional and non-traditional resources in service of collective impact projects, we will need to become more adept at making the case for deep, genuine collaboration amongst multiple stakeholders as critical groundwork for sustained systems change.


The slides from the panel are available here.

Jodi Clark: When you can have an honest conversation about the risks and opportunities of a potential partnership, everyone in the room can relax.

How Can RBA and Collective Play Nicely Together?

Center for New Leadership - November 3, 2015 - 5:38pm

By Kate Jellema, Associate Dean for Graduate & Professional Studies and Director of the Center for New Leadership at Marlboro College. My colleague Hillary Boone and the three dozen participants in our Lake Morey workgroup all contributed substantively to the thinking in this post.

Last month at the Collective Impact conference at Lake Morey organized by United Way of Chittenden County, I had the chance to explore the connections between Results-Based Accountability and Collective Impact, two approaches with broad currency in Vermont’s mission-driven sector. In our work group, we started with the assumption that both RBA and CI are strong, effective and inherently-collaborative methodologies. We then asked: Where are the points of overlap, and how can these approaches enrich to one another?

Points of agreement

Collective Impact and RBA start from a similar set of assumptions:

  • Both seek to create meaningful big-picture change.
  • Both start with ends (“results” or “shared vision”) and work backwards to means.
  • Both recognize the importance of “measuring what matters” and using data for organizational and systems learning.
  • Both emphasize the need to enlist multiple partners to contribute to population-level results.
  • Both offer a framework for thinking about the connection between broad systems-level goals and organizational-level programming.


Unique contributions

When we put these two approaches side-by-side, we build a more powerful toolkit:

  • CI gives us the concept of the backbone organization, a formally-appointed and well-staffed entity with specific responsibilities to coordinate the efforts of the collective undertaking.
  • RBA gives us “turn the curve thinking,” an intuitively-appealing conceptual tool to connect data with action and inspire systems-level work for change.
  • CI encourages us to build comprehensive systems maps that demonstrate the complex interrelationships of population-level systems and help us to identify leverage points for change.
  • RBA encourages us to sketch concise performance grids that keep the question “Is anyone better off?” at the forefront of our minds.



On several key topics, the two methodologies enrich each other in more subtle ways. Where they differ in emphasis, they expose important questions to ask about the art of community work.


  • TIME: One of the most memorable lines from the CI training at Lake Morey last month was trainer Greg Hill’s comment that “Collective Impact moves at the speed of trust.”  CI encourages us to move slowly and approach collaborations with the long haul in mind, ready to invest many months and even years simply building the relationships that will allow for effective partnerships. RBA provides a nice counterbalance to that gradualist approach by providing effective means to move quickly from talk to action in order to break through conversational impasse and build group momentum by getting things done. How can move fast enough and slow enough in our community work?


  • BOUNDEDNESS: One of the insights implicit in the CI model is the value of creating a bounded group of enlisted partners, all of whom publicly sign on to shared goals and a shared work plan; this allows for greater alignment and accountability within the team. On the other hand, RBA encourages us to never stop asking ourselves “who are the partners with a role to play?” and to continually think about who else could/should be at the table. When should we limit our circle to a committed core, and when should we think more expansively about potential partners?


  • COMPLEXITY: CI leans towards capturing the full complexity of a situation or system, the better to fully understand and influence it, whereas RBA leans towards simplification based on a philosophy that in our noisy world, less is often more. When should we embrace complexity, and when should we drive towards simplification?


Spiral of Inspiration

RBA and Collective Impact share many starting assumptions, and with relative ease they can become mutually-reinforcing methodologies. Used in tandem, they offer an expanded repertoire of effective change-making concepts and tools, and the contrasts between them encourage us to grapple with some subtle questions of community work.


At their best, CI and RBA can work together to create a spiral of inspiration whereby a desire to make systems-level change using a CI approach can motivate groups to do thoughtful work to gather mission-centric data in an RBA format, while at the same time RBA-style data trendlines can redouble a group’s commitment to work together for positive systems change.


ALIGN Kicks Off with Focus on Storytelling

Center for New Leadership - November 3, 2015 - 7:30am

ALIGN prepares emerging community leaders for a sustainable, high-impact career in the mission-driven sector by helping them clarify personal purpose, develop practices to support work/life integration, form a supportive community of practice, and better align their work with their strengths and passions.

This year the cohort consists of 12 people, ranging from local executive directors, an international NGO founder from Atlanta, Georgia, and two current Marlboro graduate students. The opening retreat has completed, and now the group is moving into storytelling as a practice for better work-life balance.

We got in touch with Chris Meehan, ALIGN participant and Chief Community Impact Officer at Vermont Foodbank, to catch up about the ALIGN kickoff and how it has impacted her so far.

Chris: “Since our first meeting together, I’ve made some significant changes in how I organize my day so I’m more productive and energized.

I’m a mother of two remarkable children, a partner to an amazing man and I have a very fulfilling career – the big, juicy question for me is “how do I prioritize the things that are most important to me in my life so that I can be as happy, passionate and effective as I can be in all of these areas (mom, wife, worker – and more)?”

ALIGN offers some very practical tools and support for me to be able to live a good life in the areas that are most significant to me in the context of a shared learning community so that I may continue to learn and grow.

The “Story of the Week (SOW)” component of ALIGN is one of those practical tools that I just referenced above. This exercise provides a framework for me to review my week through a certain lens: one that helps me look for a few particularly fulfilling areas and for any challenges or important questions that may have come up. Being able to tell this story, ask these questions and share it with others has not only help me to remain focused on what I want in my life both professionally and personally, but can also help others in my ALIGN community of learning. The narrative, or story, that we tell ourselves and others has great power.”

Theory Into Practice: Marlboro Facilities Go Solar

Center for New Leadership - November 2, 2015 - 1:47pm

Last week a small solar system was installed on the roof of the Marlboro Graduate Center. We interviewed “KP” Peterson, Marlboro MBA graduate and Master Electrician at Marlboro College to get the scoop on the project.  

Hillary Boone: How long have you been planning this? What got you started?

KP Peterson: This is part of my capstone project, so I started the planning about two years ago.

My capstone was about getting the grad center to be a lot more efficient. I wanted to actually do my capstone on something that was relevant to me and to Marlboro College. I got several quotes to do the entire building, to do very large systems. This system is small, and my hope is that it is preliminary to a larger scale system at the grad school that includes panels on the roof and on the bridge.


HB: What impact will the solar panels have?

KP: Right now, it’s about visibility. The system is small. It went online on Thursday [10/29/2015] and produced 47.8 kilowatts. It’s something. According to the charts associated with the system, as of today we have saved one tree and could have powered one house for one day. It’s teeny, but the system is hugely visible. Everyone coming into the building has asked about it, and everyone can see it, right there from the parking lot. My mindset is that every tiny bit helps.


HB: What do you see as the future of buildings at the graduate school?

KP: My longterm vision for the graduate center is to do everything I possibly can to reduce the electrical impact. We have also done a lot of work on the heating systems. It has made a difference. Efficiency Vermont has been helping out with that and I have graphs and charts and they show that we’re making a dent. We definitely have reduced the electricity usage at the college. And that’s awesome. Not everything will get done off of that capstone, but at this point it’s all about the money. I think there is buy-in for a large scale system, and now we just have to find the money to pay for it.


HB: You’ve put so much energy into this, how does it feel to see the project really happening?

KP: It’s pretty cool. My capstone included other things that have been happening at the grad center, like parking lights that are now LED, getting some LED lights in the building, which is happening little by little. It included this solar. It included more LED lights outside instead of the high-wattage we have now. So it’s a piece, and it feels great. Wouldn’t it be awesome if the entire thing could happen in five to ten years? I’ve got a longterm plan, and that’s it.

Graduate Center Grows Solar

Sustainability Updates - October 30, 2015 - 1:19pm

The addition of new solar panels on the south-facing awning of the Marlboro College Graduate Center, on October 28, marked the latest stage in the greening of Marlboro. The new system includes a series of 16 grid-tied photovoltaic panels, rated at a total of 4,560 watts, facing the graduate center parking lot.

“It’s a very visible start to what could be a larger project down the road,” said K.P. Peterson, the college’s master electrician. Although the panels are not sufficient to generate all of the electricity used by the facility, long-range plans include expanding on the project to include panels on the roof.

Walking The Talk: Watershed Coaching is B Corp Certified

Center for New Leadership - October 28, 2015 - 12:44pm
A message from Kerry Secrest, Principal at Watershed Coaching LLC, CNL Consultant and Director of the Women’s Leadership Circles.  — I’m excited to share that Watershed Coaching was just B Corp certified!“What’s that?” you might wonder. For those of you who aren’t familiar with it, a B Corp (B stands for “Benefit”) is to business what Fair Trade certification is to coffee or USDA Organic certification is to milk. B Corp status requires meeting rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. It’s an external, measured validation of my commitment to corporate social responsibility through my work. What I really appreciated about the process was that it got me focused in a concrete way on how my business reflects my values and what the metrics are which demonstrate actual actions bringing those values to life. -Kerry

And the Winners Are!

Library Blog - October 11, 2015 - 5:12pm

Many thanks to everyone who nominated items for the library to buy this year with the David Pierce Fund. His family has generously established a fund in his memory to support the purchase of fun, not necessarily academic, materials for the library each year. This year, we were able to purchase all of the items that were suggested or they had already been purchased (yay!), and the winners are:

Pierce Fund Purchases:
Language of Flowers by Kate Greenaway
The Legend of Korra Book 3 (DVD) [we have Books 1 & 2 in the AV Room]
Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee
The Martian by Andy Weir
The Fighter (DVD)
Wicked and Weird: the Amazing Tales of Buck 65 by Rich Terfey

On Their Way:
Welcome to Night Vale: A Novel by Joseph Fink
All The Wrong Questions: Quadrilogy by Lemony Snicket (all four book in the series)

Currently Available:
Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth by Christopher Ware

These items will arrive at the library over the next few weeks; look for them to be on display as they come in.

Thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s selection process! This tradition is a lovely tribute to David’s memory. I hope that everyone enjoys these great new additions to the collection.

Welcoming New Faces and New Roles: Management Leadership at Marlboro

Center for New Leadership - October 6, 2015 - 7:17pm

Lori Hanau, Community Builder.

Lori supports shifts of consciousness, individually and collectively. She does this as the founder of Global Round Table Leadership (GRTL), where she works with people and teams to build the personal and shared leadership capacities necessary to open to their innate brilliance and become the change their own visions and missions call them to be. Lori fosters group vitality through her advising, facilitation and co-creative practices, including GRTL’s Shared Leadership Framework. She is dedicated to guiding groups and individuals on their journeys to new heights of empowerment and accountability. This guidance leads to grasping the common core of our essential humanity, which naturally elevates a team’s performance and capacity to deliver more tangible impact.

Lori launched GRTL in 2002 after leaving her executive position in the manufacturing sector to pursue her commitment to support the flourishing of people and organizations.

Lori is a faculty partner and community builder within Marlboro College’s Graduate and Professional Studies management programs. She is proud to serve on the Board of Directors for the Social Venture Network, and on the Board of Advisors for The Of Many Institute for Multifaith Leadership at New York University. Lori is a founding member of the Nature Based Leadership Institute (NBLI), at Antioch University New England, and also a founding consultant of the Center for New Leadership at Marlboro College. She is a contributing writer on leadership for Conscious Company Magazine. In 2002 Lori co-founded the Mindfulness Practice Center in Keene, NH, where she also resides with her better half, her Corgi, Miss Pippin.

“What most excites you about the future of the management education at Marlboro?”

“What excites me most about the future of the management education at Marlboro is the people within the present day Marlboro community who are showing up to dream, design, co-create and lead into our future together, on behalf of our independent and collective flourishing. My money and my faith is on us!! You all hearten me and remind me that ‘Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.’ –Arundhati Roy”


Tristan Toleno, Interim Chair, MBA in Sustainability

Tristan has worked in the food-service industry for almost 20 years. For 10 years he was the managing partner and chef of Riverview Cafe, where he employed and supervised more than 400 employees. Prior to that, he trained almost 100 cooks, as he worked his way up the professional ladder to chef. Tristan has also started two new catering companies, Rigani Wood-Fired Pizza, and Entera Artisanal Catering. In January 2013, he began a term  in the Vermont House of Representatives, representing Brattleboro’s 3rd District where he uses his MBA training to advance sustainable social change throughout Vermont.

Tristan’s philosophical commitment to relationship-driven business and community systems is anchored by a willingness to serve. For many years he has been an active volunteer for many local and state organizations, including the Vermont Fresh Network, Landmark Trust, the Healthy Communities Coalition and the Brattleboro Area Chamber. Tristan’s Capstone project was on school food systems and a vision for change in local schools.

Tristan lives in Brattleboro with his wife, Susie, and their two sons, Owen and Malcolm.

“What most excites you about the future of the management education at Marlboro?”

“We can actually re-imagine the future.”


Travis Hellstrom, Interim Chair, MS in Managing Mission-Driven Organizations

Travis is an everyday humanitarian, author, entrepreneur and executive advisor. He is founder of Advance Humanity, a humanitarian consulting group dedicated to helping social entrepreneurs, social businesses and nonprofits expand their influence and make a difference in the world. Advance Humanity is also one of first dozen Certified B Corporations in Vermont alongside Ben & Jerry’s, Seventh Generation and King Arthur Flour. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Mongolia (2008-11), and a Peace Corps Fellow at SIT Graduate Institute where he received his Masters of Arts in Management. His focus was on social business and nonprofit management and he wrote his thesis on Leading Happiness: Shared Leadership and Happiness at Work in Certified Benefit Corporations.

 “What most excites you about the future of the management education at Marlboro?” “‘You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.’ – Jon Kabat-Zinn I’m very excited that Marlboro Graduate School, from its very founding, has bravely put itself in challenging territory. You predicted and positioned your students for the growing worldwide trends in sustainability, technology, entrepreneurship, social business and much more. You did what many of my greatest mentors have told me over the years – you didn’t get caught in the waves, you learned how to surf. As our world is changing, maybe faster than ever, we have this amazing opportunity to predict and get in front of the greatest and most powerful trends yet to come. I am honored to be on that journey with you and I know we are going to have a lot of fun learning to ride the waves together.”

Karen White

Over the past 15 years, Karen has worked with corporate and non-profit organizations around the globe, assisting them improve their project management capabilities, with a focus on information technology and volunteer-based projects. Karen originally started her professional life as a software engineer. She is certified as a project management professional (PMP) by the Project Management Institute (PMI), a global leader in the development of standards for the practice of project management. She is also a certified scrum master.

Karen authored Agile Project Management: A Mandate for the 21st Century and the award-winning Practical Project Management for Agile Nonprofits, published in 2013. A former member of PMI’s International Board of Directors, Karen was the chairperson of the PMI Educational Foundation Board during the foundation’s initial capital campaign. She was recently named a fellow of the Project Management Institute in recognition of her contributions to society and the practical application of project management. Karen is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and an advocate for the American Cancer Society, in addition to being an active volunteer at the Concord Hospital Payson Center for Cancer Care. She continues to support PMI by chairing the Ethics Appeals Committee as well as adjudicating and/or arbitrating special ethics allegations upon request of the board.

Karen lives in Weare, New Hampshire, with her spouse, her parents, and two rescue cats, in a house she and her husband constructed by themselves. Karen is also a former member of the US Army Reserves, having served as a Senior NCO during the Vietnam Era.

“What most excites you about the future of the management education at Marlboro?”

“We have such a diverse community, and yet, we have a common sense of identity. By establishing a core set of courses that reinforce the common identity, and then encouraging structured exploration of specialized concentrations, we are honoring that diversity. We are also cognizant of the agility required of organizations in this global economy. The future structure will enable the management school to be flexible in responding to the needs of its stakeholders.

Help Us Select Items for the David Pierce Fund

Library Blog - October 1, 2015 - 9:59am

David Pierce, a Marlboro College student whose tragic death in 2003 deeply impacted our community, is remembered each October. Many on campus still have fond memories of David, and a bench and apple tree outside of the Library commemorate his life and time at Marlboro. Additionally, David’s family established a fund for the Library to purchase items that are not necessarily for academic purposes, but rather for fun. Think graphic novels, current popular fiction, movies, TV series, etc. Each year, the Library buys a few more items using the fund established in his memory.

This year, we are asking for your help in choosing what to buy!

Between now and 8:30am on Monday, 10/5, email (or call, or stop by, or comment below…) with the titles of any movies, books, graphic novels, or other items you’d like the Library to add. Remember: fun, not work (though the two aren’t always mutually exclusive!).

We’ll make a list of all your suggestions, then put them to a vote. Students will be emailed a link to a survey; voting will be open through the end of the day on Wednesday, October 7th. When voting is over, we’ll rank the selections, start buying with the top vote-getter, and continue down the list as far as we can.

In the meantime, stop by the Library to see some of the items that have been bought with David’s fund in past years. They’re currently on display on the ground floor, across from the Service Desk.

Beth Ruane
Library Director

Convocation Remarks

Center for New Leadership - September 30, 2015 - 3:46pm

By Adam Katrick, current Marlboro graduate student, and Marlboro Undergraduate Alumni.

My first night in Marlboro was in 2003 just a couple miles from this building – somewhere Northwest of here in the woods just off the ridge. I was on the Forest Skills Woods trip (now called Bridges trips), and that first night we didn’t have any shelter – but it was beautiful, so we slept under the stars. I didn’t know it at the time, but to my right slept my future husband, to my left a good friend of 12 years.

I don’t know why I chose that trip. I was not from a place of wilderness or woods. Before I was a student at Marlboro I came from a place filled with cornfields and shopping malls and suburban streets and ranch houses. I didn’t like that place; that place was never home for me.

But the woods seeped into me while I was here. It certainly helped that I had an obsession with studying wolves, and you don’t find wolves in cornfields or shopping malls. But just the experience of being next to and in the woods nearly every day at Marlboro changed me and the way I think. It especially changed how I thought about community.

What I have to say about community sounds sappy. Marlboro has a phenomenal community. Marlboro boasts about it’s community. And we should. It’s a damn fine community. But when I say community, my definition might not match what you’re thinking.

Think of all of us here, in this room, in this building. This building is designed for humans. The benches that you sit on, the lights in the hallways and their switches, the stairways and carpets, the water fountain, and the doors – it’s all designed for humans, by humans. But what’s really unique about the Marlboro community is what happens when you step outside the doors of this building.

Marlboro College is surrounded and enveloped by the woods. Out there, there is a community of hundreds of different species. There are trees and foxes and streams and all sorts of things you might not even imagine. And while community is a human word, it’s not a human concept. We are mammals. We do mammalian things everyday. And there are other mammals living just outside these doors. We can and do communicate with them, even if it’s not in English.

I was in the midst of a huge transition when I went on my first Woods trip and learned to survive on the land, and then, became a college student. In times of transition, we look for wisdom. And communities hold vast amounts of wisdom. The human community at Marlboro has a lot of wisdom and guidance for these transitions. We could speak for hours with the others around us in this room and learn so much. But the larger community just outside these doors…

…well, let’s just say that all the books you could stuff in the library up the hill wouldn’t hold even a sliver of vast amount of knowledge this land holds. There have been species who have lived here generation after generation – learning to survive and thrive on these hills. All of that knowledge can bring great wisdom.

So in this moment of transition, I’m asking you to go outside. After this ceremony, I’m asking you to take off your shoes and walk out these doors and go into the woods. Go sit and talk with the trees. Walk on the trails like the foxes do. Wash your face in the pond brook at the bottom of the hill, just past the farm. You can always come back and eat cookies with your friends in the dining hall at the end of the day. But I promise you there is wisdom out there.

Marlboro has a phenomenal community. Out there, in this community, in these woods, you will find questions you didn’t even know you had. And you never know what else you might find – I found my husband in these woods. I hope that many of you, like I did, will also find a place to call home.

Now Accepting Applications for the Women’s Leadership Circle of the Upper Valley

Center for New Leadership - September 28, 2015 - 3:00pm
An invitation for women leaders
of the Upper Valley

We are now building the cohort for a facilitated Women’s Leadership Circle, to take place in the Upper Valley from January to June 2016. Applications received by October 26 will receive a $100 early bird discount.

The Women’s Leadership Circles of Vermont were developed to support accomplished women in leadership positions across sectors. Our participants have theinitiative and vision to push themselves toward greater personal and professional achievement and to grow in their roles as influential change-makers.


We build participant groups of powerful women with the awareness, experience and professionalism to create a safe place where frank discussions can happen.

WLC participants support each other to meet the challenges of leadership with clarity and confidence.

We have served high-impact leaders from Vermont’s major organizations including: Seventh Generation, New Chapter, Norwich University, Vermont Agency of Human Services, Burlington City Arts, Sugarbush Resort, Vermont Wood Pellet, Emerge Vermont, Hildene, the Vermont Land Trust, Brattleboro Memorial Hospital, Main Street Landing, Fletcher Free Library, JK Adams, Windham Regional Commission, Vermont Gas, US Department of Homeland Security, KSV, Champlain College, Vermont Energy Investment Corporation and the Vermont Economic Development Authority.


Alignment: The program supports deep inquiry into personal and professional priorities and helps participants create a life more in alignment with their values.

Expanded capacity: Participants identify their strengths and develop an individualized plan to effectively build on their leadership abilities.

Grounded foundation: WLC supports women to embody their leadership.  Participants explore the link between personal well-being and leadership, and take action in support of their improved health.

Real-world impact: Each WLC participant practices her expanded leadership abilities in a real-world project  designed to create meaningful outcomes in alignment with personal values and aspirations.

Community: Each Circle is intentionally drawn from the same region. Circle members sustain their friendships long after the formal portion of WLC is completed, and often continue to meet as a group for years.

“Since starting the Women’s Leadership Circle, I have found that I am a more concise communicator and I have learned to shift my thinking around some of the cultural norms that women often find themselves trapped in. Redefining my relationship to the word “no” may sound simple, but it was a monumental step towards redefining my leadership and the way I walk through this world as a woman.”

– Cathleen Barkley, Executive Director, HOPE Works

Where to Find Us: CNL on the Road

Center for New Leadership - September 26, 2015 - 1:22pm
This fall, CNL hits the road with conference presentations scheduled throughout New England. Stop in and say hello! We can also come to you. CNL has officially launched, supporting the ongoing learning of mission-driven leaders through coaching, consulting and training. From board training to strategic planning facilitation, B-Corps certification to communications and branding, CNL can work with you to address your core issues and co-create transformative and sustainable improvements.

Learn more at, or email to get started.

Marlboro Social Media Class Converses with Noted Social Media Guru Allison Fine

Center for New Leadership - September 25, 2015 - 3:56pm
Last Friday the students in “Social Media for Social Change” had a chance to engage in a live conversation with Allison Fine, the author of three books and a noted expert on social media. The business partner of Marlboro professor Debra Askanase, Allison is the author of Momentum, The Networked Nonprofit (with co-author Beth Kanter), and Matterness. She also blogs at She also recently gave a TEDx Talk called “How I Disappointed A Marine and Learned To Lead” with topics related to nonprofit management. Debra and Allison collaborate on a business called Students had an open-ended conversation with Allison via Skype about her concept of “matterness,” a different approach to social media that helps organizations turn passive stakeholders into active participants by making individuals known, acknowledged, and invested in the organization’s success.

New Roles at the Graduate School: A Letter from Sean Conley

Center for New Leadership - September 24, 2015 - 10:14am

Dear Members of the Marlboro Community:

I’m pleased to announce the appointment of Kate Jellema as Associate Dean for Graduate and Professional Studies at Marlboro College. In this role, Kate will serve as director of the Graduate School and will continue as director of the Marlboro College Center for New Leadership.

Kate began her affiliation with the Graduate School in 2010, when she came on as coordinator of our Certificate in Nonprofit Management. In short order, Kate and I worked together to develop a full graduate program in managing mission-driven organizations. She has chaired that innovative and successful degree program since its inception. Kate has also been instrumental in creating the Accelerated Master’s Track and Cross-Campus Seminars, both designed to encourage more academic connection between our Hill and River campuses.

Alongside this work, Kate and I collaborated with Ellen McCulloch-Lovell, Ariel Brooks and many others to develop a robust set of professional development programs out of the graduate school. She led a team effort to secure a substantial federal grant to create Benchmarks for a Better Vermont, a six-partner policy and training consortium housed at Marlboro College; partnered with the Snelling Center to make Marlboro College the academic partner for the Vermont Leadership Institute; brought the statewide Women’s Leadership Circles of Vermont into Marlboro’s portfolio; worked with community partners to create our innovative Board Fellows program; and oversaw the progress of hundreds of participants, including many Marlboro staff, faculty and students, through our 80-hour Certificate in Nonprofit Management. More recently, Kate co-created ALIGN, a competitive program for emerging community leaders that currently attracts applicants from across the Northeast. These professional development programs now comprise the heart of the College’s Center for New Leadership.

Kate started her working life as an anthropologist and Asianist. She earned her Master’s degree from Johns Hopkins with a thesis on Vietnamese boat people in Hong Kong and her PhD in anthropology and history from the University of Michigan with a dissertation on questions of memory, place and power in contemporary Vietnam. Her first teaching experience was as an adjunct professor at Marlboro College, filling in for Carol Hendrickson and Dana Howell with classes such as “The Anthropology of Socialism” and “Collective Memory and Social Amnesia.” She has received fellowships for her research from the MacArthur Foundation, the Social Science Research Foundation and the Woodrow Wilson Foundation amongst others.

To take on her new responsibilities as Associate Dean, Kate will be stepping down from her position as chair of our MS in Managing Mission-Driven Organizations (MDO). We are very excited that Travis Hellstrom will be taking over that role as interim chair for MDO. Travis is founder and CEO of Advance Humanity, a humanitarian consulting group dedicated to helping social entrepreneurs, social businesses and nonprofits expand their influence and make a difference in the world. Advance Humanity is also one of first dozen Certified B Corporations in Vermont alongside Ben & Jerry’s, Seventh Generation and King Arthur Flour. Travis works nationally and internationally with a wide variety of mission-driven clients. His Master’s thesis, completed at the School for International Training in Brattleboro, focused on the relationship between shared leadership and happiness.

October will be a transitional month as I work closely with Kate as she and I transition into our new roles. In turn, Kate will be mentoring Travis in his new role. The official baton-passing will take place on November 1st. There will be a reception to welcome Kate and Travis during the October residency at the graduate school the weekend of October 9-11; stay tuned!

Please join me in congratulating Kate and Travis on their new roles.

-Sean Conley

Certificate in Nonprofit Management Profile: Jacqueline Marshall

Center for New Leadership - September 22, 2015 - 2:02pm
The Certificate in Nonprofit Management begins in Burlington 10/2/15. Learn more and register soon to reserve your spot! Name: Jacqueline Marshall
Organization: Ch17 Town Meeting Television and CCTV Productions
Job Title: Channel Director (new title)
Certificate Year: 2014

What do you like best about your job?
It is rewarding to work for a noncommercial organization where we focus on giving the community a voice and an outlet to be heard. We support and provide them with resources and media that keeps local government transparent.

What were you hoping to get out of the certificate?
A clearer understanding of how nonprofits run and everything in between.

How did the course meet that need?
It gave me a thorough introduction and educated me in areas I was not aware of in nonprofits. I learned a lot of new information that has given me a new perspective. It is directly contributing to my new leadership role which has been critical for my career growth.

Were there any benefits you didn’t expect?
I did not expect to meet such diverse nonprofits. It gave me a better overview of this industry in Vermont.

What was your favorite workshop and why?
Sustainable Leadership / Community Engagement workshop was helpful for my new role at organization and gave me confidence.

Any advice for someone thinking about taking the Certificate?
Get ready to meet some awesome people! The instructors are amazing. They engage you with group exercises and by sharing their experiences. You have the opportunity to network and meet people with varying levels of knowledge from many organizations. This was helpful for me, as I am fairly new to the nonprofit world.  The Certificate in Nonprofit Management begins in Burlington 10/2/15. Learn more and register soon to reserve your spot!

Certificate in Nonprofit Management Profile: Matt Whalen

Center for New Leadership - September 17, 2015 - 3:04pm

The Certificate in Nonprofit Management begins in Burlington 10/2/15. Learn more and register soon to reserve your spot!


Name: Matt Whalen Organization: Essex CHIPS
Job Title: Prevention and Wellness Director
Certificate Year: 2014


What do you like best about your job? I love working in prevention because of the positive nature of the work. Prevention to me is all about working together to build a world that sets everyone up for success, while making sure that we all have the skills we need to make good choices when bad choices are available.

What were you hoping to get out of the certificate? At the onset, I wanted to get a working knowledge of how nonprofits function and are sustained, while building my resume. That, and a free meal or two.

How did the course meet that need? Well, beyond being able to type “Certificate in Nonprofit Management” onto my CV and resume, the course allowed me to get a glimpse into the inner workings of other local nonprofits of varying size. This perspective helped me understand that all nonprofits function differently and are sustained in different ways.

How has the certificate contributed to your work? The course provided me with a new lens through which to view my work. After the course, I had new information about everything from budget management to messaging our mission.

Were there any benefits you didn’t expect? Being able to network with other nonprofit leaders was a HUGE plus that I did not consider upon signing up for the course. You meet so many great people with so many great ideas and skills.

What was your favorite workshop and why? Other than meeting and getting to know other people, I really enjoyed the revolving door of trainers. One week you would have a to-the-point fundraiser, the next you would have an animated storyteller. I appreciated them all.

Any advice for someone thinking about taking the Certificate? Sign up before it fills up! You won’t regret it! Also, as hard as it is, make time for the online portion of the course. I always regretted not budgeting more time to connect with my classmates between courses.

 The Certificate in Nonprofit Management begins in Burlington 10/2/15. Learn more and register soon to reserve your spot!