Bill Falls photoWelcome from the Dean

I’m now in my second year as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. What do I miss the most about working as a full-time faculty member at UVM? It has to be the give and take of discussions with students in the classroom or in the lab, the informal hallway conversations with faculty colleagues that might turn into deeper exchanges about new program ideas or new research opportunities, and the daily rhythm of a semester in full swing.

On the other hand, as Dean I get the opportunity to meet more of my faculty colleagues and discover the exciting learning and research that’s happening across the College. The more I get around, the more I am awed by the wide-ranging achievements, intellectual ferment and student growth happening here every day. In particular, I’m impressed with how many of our undergraduate students participate in research and creative endeavors—they are publishing, performing, exhibiting or presenting their work and sharing it with audiences beyond our community.

In the College of Arts and Sciences, these experiences are not the exception, they are the norm, and I think the numbers bear me out. Ninety-one percent of seniors at UVM report being engaged in research—be it through an internship or other experience-based practice—before graduating from UVM. Thirty–eight percent of seniors say they have involvement in research with a faculty mentor at some point in their college career.

UVM is a “sweet spot” in higher education today—a place that’s large enough to provide abundant opportunities to students but small enough to facilitate a profound exchange of ideas and perspectives that come through personal interaction.

Thank you for reading about just a few of these stories in this issue, which demonstrates that our approach to education and research is truly unique.

Sincerely,

Bill Falls signature

Bill Falls
Dean of Arts and Sciences

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UVM History Professor a Key Link to Historic Find

A French historian learns of a medieval manuscript about to be auctioned off in the United States and races to share its secrets with the world. It sounds like the plot of a mystery novel, but fact is sometimes more exciting than fiction, as UVM history professor Sean Field discovers.

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Belfast Tourney Gives Student Athletes a Seminar in Northern Ireland History

When the UVM men’s hockey team travelled to Belfast, Ireland, over the 2016 Thanksgiving break, players got more than an early-season trans-Atlantic road trip. They also got a seminar in the culture and history of Northern Ireland, and a deeper understanding of the sectarian rivalries that still divide the country.

 

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