University of Vermont

Vermont Quarterly

A Day in the Life of UVM: Oct. 11, 2011

Take a glimpse at more than 100 moments in one day at UVM.

The years are short, but the days are long. It's a maxim that applies to any period in our lives filled with excitement and challenge like childhood (or parenting). It's true of college, too. How much and how varied is the activity packed into a single day on a college campus? With our Day in the Life series, UVM Today endeavors to find out.

For the second year in a row, we fanned out across the University of Vermont and reported here with words, photos and video all that happens at UVM in one day.



5:55 a.m. Gucciardi Recreation and Fitness Center

Esther Nemethy

“Me? I’m wide awake,” says first-year student Esther Nemethy. A member of the UVM track team, she’s going to practice the triple jump, but first she has to find her ID to get through the turnstile. “We’ve
been late recently,” she says, “so the coach is making us start earlier.”

6 a.m. Patrick-Forbush-Gutterson Athletic Complex

Tyler Nguyen

For most, the day is just beginning, but Tyler Nguyen, a maintenance unit supervisor in the Department of Custodial Services, prepares to head home after a long night of work.

6:02 a.m. Athletic Campus


Local speedster, Binney Mitchell ’91, enjoys an early morning, moonlit run.

6:15 a.m. Forbush Natatorium

swim practice

The undefeated women's swim team starts the day with a practice.

6:40 a.m. Looking east


Sunrise from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

7:35 a.m. Redstone Campus

bus driver

CATS shuttle driver George L'Esperance has a laugh after greeting sophomore Megan Schindler as she boards the Redstone Express's first run of the day. "You're Hollywood, you're Hollywood, get in the picture," L'Esperance jokes. A UVM driver for the past five years, L'Esperance began driving buses part time with Greyhound when he was in the Army and 36 years "on the road" followed. "I love the kids," he says. "College kids get a bad rap, but I see how hard they work. When I drive on Sundays, that's library day."

7:52 a.m. Simpson Dining Hall


Freshman Chris Damiani grabs a quick breakfast and checks his iPhone in the newly renovated Simpson Dining Hall. After the egg and bacon on an English muffin, next on the agenda is an economics class with Professor Marc Law.

8:08 a.m. Southwick Hall


Nathan Foltz, a freshman history major, plays the hymn "Dear Lord and Father of Mankind" in a Music Building practice room. Foltz says he didn't go to church growing up but his mother was a church pianist, "so this is kind of what I've done." He adds, "A lot of hymns are really boring, but this one is interesting."

8:15 a.m. Campus Children's Center


Senior elementary education major Cecilia Puleio helps Ben, age 3, build a trailer with Magna-Tiles for his toy cars. Once they're safely parked, the script changes. Ben says to Cecilia, "Now you cry while I knock it down."

8:22 a.m. Gutterson Field House


Catamount goalie coach Terry Lovelette works with his athletes in an early morning practice at Gutterson. A longtime fixture with the UVM hockey program, Lovelette's charges have included Boston Bruins goalkeeper Tim Thomas.

8:30 a.m. Waterman Building

In his 8:30 a.m. class," Big Fish, Little Fish: Politics and Proverbs," where he'll be teaching today on 18th-century sayings, Professor Wolfgang Mieder takes a moment to note the loss of Steve Jobs (with proverbs, of course). He projects overhead a cartoon depicting Jobs standing in front of the ubiquitous Apple symbol. The caption: “iCame, iSaw, iConquered.”

Not quite a techie himself, Mieder tells his students he’s aware that Jobs is one of the most influential and inspiring figures of their time and shares passages from Jobs’ 2005 Stanford commencement speech he hopes they’ll embrace: “The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. As with all matters of the heart you’ll know it when you find it.”

Jobs ends, Mieder notes, with a variation of a classic proverb: Live each day as though it were the last.

8:30 a.m. UVM Green

Rose Leland

While most of the campus is looking ahead to Homecoming and Family Weekend, which kicks off Friday, UVM’s groundskeeper-in-chief, Rose Leland, is gazing off into the distant future: to commencement 2012.  She’s standing just outside the construction war zone that is the UVM green, where commencement will be held, weather permitting. Will the grass grow nice and close to the newly laid concrete walkways, she wonders? Will it overwinter? Will it be strong enough to withstand all the pedestrian traffic next May?  She’ll do a walking tour of the entire campus over the next few days to make sure it’s shipshape for this weekend. But it’s that far off one that has her occasionally reaching for the antacid bottle. 

8:39 a.m. Walkway outside University Heights


Music professor David Feurzeig and his son Sam, age 11, walk past University Heights on their way to the Music Building. While the father is a pianist, the son is working on guitar. Sam, who is home-schooled, has a lesson on campus with Billy Rugger today.

8:42 a.m. Athletic Campus

turf prep

UVM's second turf field is prepped to receive the green carpet. The field is scheduled to be ready for action the first week of November.

9:17 a.m. Redstone Lofts

Redstone Lofts

Under clear October skies construction of Redstone Lofts is in high gear. The project will provide 403 beds within 144 units in a mix of studio, one, two, three, and four-bedroom apartments that will be available for UVM’s juniors, seniors and graduate students in fall 2012. Redstone Lofts will be owned by Catamount Student Housing, LLC and operated by Redstone Commercial Group under a long-term ground lease with UVM.

9:22 a.m. Outside Williams Hall


Amr Kashmiri, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

9:22 a.m. Speeder and Earl's, Pine Street

Speeder and Earl's

For some people, social life depends on coffee. Melissa Applet finished her master’s degree in social work at UVM in the spring. Today she’s headed to her job at the Lund Family Center. But first a stop at Speeder and Earl’s coffee shop on Pine Street. Of course, she could have stopped at Muddy Waters, Uncommon Grounds, Viva Espresso, Maglianero, Starbucks, The Chubby Muffin, Mirabelle’s, August First, the Bluebird Coffee Stop, Radio Bean, New Moon Café, or, yes, Dunkin Donuts. Not a bad town for joe.

9:25 a.m. Outside the Fleming Museum


Cori Ridgley, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

9:41 a.m. Royall Tyler Theatre


Prepping for his afternoon history of costume class, theatre professor Martin Thaler and his assistant Aimee Beach, a senior theatre major, dress a woman’s form in a period costume from the play, The Complete Female Stage Beauty. Also a women’s and gender studies course, Thaler will examine with students how this dress, with corset and multiple petticoats, reflect the social and economic norms of the time. “Women were not quite an accessory to men,” he says, “but were there to show off his status in society.”

9:45 a.m. Chittenden-Buckham-Wills Green


Mandy St. Hilarie, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

9:47 a.m. Bailey/Howe Library Media Resources

Checked out from the libary's media desk: Joe the King. A sociology class will view this film 1999 film about "a destitute 14 year old [who] struggles to keep his life together despite harsh abuse at his mother's hands, harsher abuse at his father's, and a growing separation from his slightly older brother." (IMDB)

9:50 a.m. College Street


The College Street shuttle makes the rounds.

9:55 a.m. Old Mill


Going down.

10 a.m. Edmunds Elementary School


Senior elementary education major Meg Hudson reads to a kindergarten class at Edmunds Elementary School in Burlington, where she's student-teaching.

10:01 a.m. Outside Bailey/Howe


Patrick LaClair, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

10:10 a.m. Williams Hall


Students interpret Professor Steve Budington's still life in his introduction to studio painting class.

10:13 a.m. Bailey/Howe Library Media Resources

Checked out from the library's media desk: Silent Light (Lumière silencieuse). This 2007 film, directed by Carlos Reygadas, tells the story of the head of a Mennonite family in Mexico who falls in love outside his marriage.

10:15 a.m. Old Mill

Political science class

The political science class "Topics In Law" works on a short, in-class essay assignment.

10:22 a.m. Jeffords Hall


Sarah Alexander, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

10:29 a.m. Davis Center

study group

Friends J.J. Newland, Sybille St. Arromand, and Rachel Weiland meet up in the Davis Center for some studying... and conversation. Newland is going over his geology notes; St. Arromand, communication law; and Weiland is catching up on some event planning for her sorority, Alpha Chi Omega.

10:35 a.m. Living/Learning Center


Recycling and Waste Management staff members Tristan Henderson (L) and Pete Pecor pick up recycled material from the Living/Learning Center, one of the 15 to 20 stops they make at campus buildings every day. A contracted firm makes another 15 to 20 stops. All told, the university recycles two to three tons of material per day.

10:36 a.m. Davis Center

Concert Bureau

"Sales have been pretty good," says Andrew Sondheim as he and friend Grace Wolcott staff the UVM Concert Bureau table in the Davis Center Atrium. They're selling tickets for Nero, playing Memorial Auditorium on Oct. 26.

10:42 a.m. Bailey/Howe Library

multimedia lab

Keith Brunner, a class of 2010 environmental studies grad, works in the multi-media lab in Bailey/Howe Library. Brunner edits a fundraising video in support of an effort in which he and a team of UVM students will travel to the United Nations Climate Summit in South Africa next year. Brunner, who attended the last summit in Mexico, is focused on bringing a youth perspective to the talks. His challenge in the video: editing 20 minutes of film down to two minutes and making a "coherent, accessible" narrative on the complex issues of climate finance and the distribution of funds.

10:46 p.m. Kalkin Hall


There's lots of laughter in the room as introductory Arabic is clearly as difficult as it looks. Students give it their best as senior lecturer Darius Jonathan gently guides them through basic conversation.

10:53 a.m. Bailey/Howe Library Steps


Sophomore Cory Van Auken admits he brings little experience as a crepes chef to his work outside Bailey/Howe Library today. "We're all learning, getting the hang as we go," he says. Van Auken is part of a ten-member team in CDAE 166, a community entrepreneurship class. Each member of the team starts with one dollar, which they then leverage into a business venture. Today is only Van Auken's second day with the spatula in a sales effort that will continue through October. All of his group's proceeds will go to the United Way's Tropical Storm Irene relief efforts in Vermont.

10:57 a.m. Outside the Davis Center


Sociology major Diana Stewart smiles and admits she's chosen a pretty sunny spot to work on a take home exam in a class on "Death and Dying." Stewart has high praise for her professor in the course, Brookes Cowan, and says the class is her favorite this semester.

11:05 a.m. Kalkin Hall


School of Business Administration seniors Brad Opsahl and Joe Rodolfy work on their Wall Street seminar project presentation at the Bloomberg Lab in Kalkin.

11:15 a.m. Old Mill


Students grab the newest issue of The Watertower, UVM's alternative newsmag.

11:23 a.m. Computer Depot, Davis Center


Phelan Vendeville, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

11:25 a.m. Bailey/Howe Library Media Resources

Checked out from the library's media desk:  Gun Crazy. This classic film noir work, also known as Deadly is the Female, tells the story of a doomed love affair and crime spree.

11:27 a.m. Bailey/Howe Library Media Resources

Checked out from the library's media desk: Jane Eyre. New York Times reviewer A.O. Scott had this to say about the most recent adaption of Charlotte Bronte's masterpiece: "Reader, I liked it."

11:30 p.m. University Heights North

Honors College

The approximately 20 students in Ian Grimmer’s first-year Honors College seminar, seated around a table in a U-Heights North classroom, are talking evolution. The text they’re discussing, Evolution for Everyone by David Sloane Wilson, is one of the many provocative titles honors students read as part of the seminar, "The Pursuit of Knowledge: Disciplines, Universities, and Engagement," which all first-years are required to take. Grimmer, whose field is modern European intellectual history, fans a free-wheeling and continuous discussion. As the class burrows into the life of the burying beetle, which has a taste for infanticide, Jake Webber concludes, “This family values stuff goes out the window. You don’t know if they’re good creatures or bad creatures.” 

11:36 a.m. Bailey/Howe Library

library classroom

Students in BSAD 95 (Me and My Career in Business) collectively identify elements of a citation, under the guidance of associate library professor Trina Magi, in the Bailey/Howe Library's newly-renovated Instruction Classroom.

11:50 a.m. Chikago Landing, Davis Center


Junior Brittany Dahlberg is sitting alone at a table having a happy, animated conversation with her laptop. Studying too hard? She's Skyping with a friend studying abroad in Florence.

11:54 a.m. University Row


Transplant surgeon Jon Yamaguchi usually eats in the hospital. But one of his clinics is on campus near the UVM Green. “If I’m over there, I stop by one of the trucks,” he says, pointing to the line of food vendors along University Place. Today, Brandon Gonnion of Big Daddy’s Pizza sells him a slice. “A dollar for a cheese slice,” says Gonnion, “you can’t go wrong.”

11:55 a.m. Kalkin Hall

Bob Ross

Not to endorse graffiti, but there’s something to be said for a fully erasable chalk tribute to legendary television art instructor Bob Ross.

11:57 a.m. Votey Hall


Ted Flanagan, professor emeritus of chemistry, waits outside of Votey Hall to meet “another retired guy” for lunch. Flanagan who retired circa 2006, says he still comes to his campus office several days a week to work on academic papers. Branimir von Turkovich, professor emeritus of engineering, rolls up in his van and the retired guys are on their way.

Noon. Ira Allen Chapel


Untitled from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

12:01 p.m. Outside Williams Hall


“Why was this so easy last week?” says sophomore Jace Curtis, inadvertently summarizing half a career’s worth of engineering wisdom. “Get it level first,” replies junior Benjamin Joslin, summarizing the other half. They’re working in a team with sophomore Kori Krichko to complete a traverse survey around Williams Hall. It’s a core task of Civil Engineering 10, Geomatics. Getting the laser in their scope to do what it’s supposed to do takes some doing. But after a few minutes, “we’re good,” says Curtis, and Krichco moves north to scout their next bearing.

12:05 p.m.Torrey Hall

complex systems class

The class is Math 300, Principles of Complex Systems. Mandelbrot’s Assumptions are the matter at hand as Peter Dodds, professor of mathematics and an expert in the field of complex systems, one of UVM’s Spires of Excellence, leads the discussion.

12:10 p.m. Votey Hall

votey lab

“We have some sand that is stuck,” says Christina Syrrakou. She and John Hanley, both doctoral students in engineering, poke at the blockage with a ruler, passing the stick back and forth over this artificial waterway device called a flume. They’ll be teaching an undergraduate hydraulics lab here in the Votey Building shortly. “We need to get it out,” says Hanley.

12:20 p.m. Catholic Center

Catholic Center

Junior Federica Wade boils apple skins in the kitchen of the Catholic Center from the apples she helped pick in South Hero, Vt. to make apple pie for a fundraiser.

12:22 p.m. Votey Hall


“Today? I’m trying to get a new project started,” says long-time staffer, Tim Raymond, the manager of computer facilities for the College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences. "But mostly what I’m doing is interruption management,” he says, laughing. His new project is, “on computer security, but I can’t tell you more than that,” he says. It will have to wait for another day.

12:23 p.m. Athletic Campus


What are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

A mystery: was this you on the bikes? We'd love to know what you were up to today.

12:25 p.m. Mann Hall


Via @innovativeEd on Twitter: Setting up iPads in Mann Hall for middle-level #vt educator workshops.

12:27 p.m. Votey Hall

Votey computer lab

Cooper Van Vranken, Will Roohan, Niall Motson and Liana Schneidman -- all juniors, and all enrolled in Mechanical Engineering 111, System Dynamics -- get close with the computers on the second floor of Votey. They’re working to master MATLAB, a technical computing program. “We’re getting stuff done,” says Motson, adjusting his cap.

12:37 p.m. Fleming Musem


Art History major Casey O'Reilly '12 works on a visual analysis of Wosene Worke Kosrof paintings from the Paul Herzog and Jolene Tritt Collection. The exhibition explores the role of Amharic language and graphic systems in Ethiopian-born artist Kosrof's work. The exhibit is on display through Dec. 16.

12:42 p.m. Carrigan Wing of the Marsh Life Science Building


Check your suede boots at the door, and enter the carefully controlled world of specialty cheesemaking. Today, at UVM’s Vermont Institute for Artisan Cheese, Enric Canut, one of the world’s leading experts in making Spanish cheese, is leading a master class of twelve students who have come from the likes of Missouri and Puerto Rico to learn the history, science, taste and technology of Spain’s major cheese styles -- three types in three days. This is Ibérico day, the semi-hard cheese family (such as Manchego), made from a blend of sheep, goat and cow’s milk.

12:45 p.m. Waterman Building


Provost Jane Knodell, gives an interview to FOX44 and WPTZ5 on the status of negotiations with United Academics.

12:45 p.m. Redstone Campus


Junior Justin Houle masters the art of slacklining, a growing recreational sport that uses one-inch nylon webbing tensioned between two trees, in the woods just northeast of Redstone Campus while his lab partner, junior Jess Jacobs, records data. The exercise was part of an experiment for their Motor Learning and Control course with Jesse Jacobs, assistant professor of rehabilitation and movement sciences.

12:48 p.m. Outside Bailey/Howe Library

break dancing

Piping in electronic music on his cell, Omar Jabareen '13 schools passersby with a break dancing routine on the walk toward the Aiken Building. He’s been practicing for four years, he says, one of only “two or three break dancers on campus." Jabareen likes to teach anyone who stops by. “I don’t do anything official,” the psychology major says, “‘cause then I’d need to form a club. I like to do it underground. But I’m putting myself out there everyday.”

12:57 p.m. Outside the Davis Center


Isaiah Macias, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

1:01 p.m. Outside Royall Tyler Theatre

Occupy UVM

Riding the wave of populist anger propelling the national Occupy Wall Street movement, Sydney Stieler ‘13 exhorts her fellow students to attend a 1 p.m. rally of the newly formed Occupy UVM group. Her companion identifies himself only as “a lively prop.” Stieler and others in the group want to draw attention to what they see as excess executive compensation, stagnant wages for staff and other perceived
“greed and unfairness,” she says.

1:14 p.m. Outing Club

outing club

Hanging out sleeping bags to dry is part of the afternoon's business for Eva Okrent, a junior in studio art, and house manager for the Outing Club. Okrent, who also helps lead rock climbing, kayaking, and hiking trips, says the week shapes up like this at OC HQ: Monday, gear return; Tuesday, sort gear, prepare it for the next trip; Wednesday, Free Pancake Day (guess which day is best?); Thursday, pull gear for the weekend's trip; Friday, pull food for the weekend's trip.

1:15 p.m. UVM/Fletcher Allen Clinical Simulation Laboratory, Rowell Hall

clinical sim lab

Auna Leatham, a medical student in the Class of 2012 (left), participates in the study “Evaluation of Airway Management Training and Skills in UVM Medical Students” under the guidance of Vincent Miller, M.D., assistant professor of anesthesiology.

1:22 p.m. UVM Rescue, East Avenue

UVM Rescue

Junior Sean Farley (driving) and sophomore Jamie Eastman, both officers with UVM Rescue, a state-certified Advanced Life Support (ALS) ambulance, staffed and operated by UVM students 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, volunteer a minimum of 20 hours per week during the school and 1,000 hours a year during holidays and over the summer.

1:43 p.m. Outside Bailey/Howe Library


Selene Colburn, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

1:58 p.m. Library Research Annex

library research annex

Letters of Evelyn Waugh, Edith Kermit Roosevelt: Portrait of a First Lady; Living a Political Life by Madeleine Kunin. These are among the choice titles library assistant Peggy Powell sees in the shelves of books that will go on sale at Special Collections annual book sale. This week, Powell and fellow library staff are readying for the event, which takes place Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Billings Apse.

2:08 p.m. Centennial Woods


Zack Theberge has Centennial Woods mostly to himself as he works on trail maintenance. An environmental science major/forestry minor, Theberge has a work-study job focused on helping take care of UVM's various Natural Areas. This afternoon's task is repositioning a footbridge that was compromised by erosion during Tropical Storm Irene. "I'd be out here doing this anyway even if I didn't get paid," Theberge says.

2:15 p.m. Old Mill

Political science class

Two students debate gender equality in politics in their political science senior honors seminar.

2:26 p.m. Outside the Davis Center


Two students represent for the UVM Feminist Club at a table outside of the Davis Center. Their offer: take a one question survey, get a baked good.

2:30 p.m. Bailey/Howe Library


At the Center for Teaching and Learning on the third floor of Bailey Howe Library, seven staff members are hard at work trying to break in -- or, more properly, break -- the latest upgrade to Blackboard, the online course management system UVM has used since 2008. This version is about fixing previous bugs, rather than introducing a lot of new features, says Justin Henry, CTL’s applications administrator. But bugs there still are, which the CTL team is intent on finding and fixing, either on their own or with the help of Blackboard. The upgrade will be introduced between semesters. If all goes well, faculty and students will have a smoother ride without really knowing why.

2:35 p.m. Aiken Center


Workers install window panels in the new Aiken Center atrium.

2:36 p.m. Living/Learning Center


"It's very awesome, a sweet gig," says junior Eric Le. The gig is gallery proctor at the Living/Learning Gallery, where Le and his friend Hai Chi Vu, also a junior, enjoy the quiet as they study for their Poli Sci 279 class, Politics and Film in East Asia. As for the gallery, the current show features "At Camp: Color photographs of family camps in the White Mountains and on Lake Champlain" by Rebecca Babbitt.

2:42 p.m. Waterman Building


Elementary education students watch a film about teaching literacy in Professor Jim Mosenthal's class, "Meeting Individual Needs: Assessment and Instruction." Following the film, the class dives into a discussion about teaching strategies.

2:46 p.m. Allen House


Hannah Melton, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

3 p.m. Waterman Building


John Bramley, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

3:01 p.m. Athletic Complex


The quadratus lumborum is the issue as Alison O'Connor, a 2010 UVM alumna and assistant athletic trainer at Athletic Medicine, works on loosening up the back muscles of Kaitlyn Evarts, a varsity swimmer for the Catamounts. As teams ready for afternoon practices, the
pace gets rapid in the training room at Athletic Medicine, O'Connor says.

3:10 p.m. Fletcher Allen Health Care

nursing student

Senior nursing student Caitlin Morris holds an infant patient during her clinical experience in inpatient pediatrics at the Vermont Children's Hospital at Fletcher Allen Health Care.

3:13 p.m. Davis Center


A leading environmental scientist, Norman Myers has served as a consultant for the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the World Resources Institute, the White House, the World Bank, the Rockefeller and MacArthur Foundations. Today he’s on campus, on the fourth floor of the Davis Center, lecturing is his role as a member of UVM’s James Marsh Professor-at-Large program. Myers is concerned that we have an “obsessive attachment to the god we call GDP,” he says. He sees this time as one of environmental “breakdown or breakthrough.”

3:17 p.m. Catamount Store, Church Street


Kelly Combs, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

3:25 p.m. Outside Bailey/Howe Library

Bailey/Howe bike rack

Junior English major Joe Siebert picks his bike out a thicket of two-wheelers parked outside Bailey Howe Library.  Siebert routinely rides to classes and around town from his apartment on East Ave. Are there more bikes on campus today than when he started at UVM three years ago? “There have always been a lot of bikes here,” he says. UVM was just named one of the nation’s most “Bicycle Friendly Universities” by the League of American Bicyclists.

3:28 p.m. Jeffords Hall


Dutch elm disease wiped out most elm trees. But some towns in Nova Scotia commemorate their bygone elms by carving the dead stumps into lively sculptures, says professor of plant biology Terry Delaney. He lectures to about 45 students in his course, "Plant Pathology," that meets in Jeffords Hall.

3:43 p.m. Jeffords Hall

fungus lab

“We found some!” says environmental science major Maggie Thomsen ‘12. Fungus that is, Rhizoctonia solani, a species that infects potatoes. She and lab partner, Rachel Brooks '12, look into their microscope as part of Plant and Soil Science 117, on the first floor of Jeffords Hall. “See the long tubules with the lines down them?” says Thomsen. Next up: they’ll search for Fusarium graminarium. “It’s menacing,” Thomsen says, “ if you’re a rye plant.”

3:45 p.m. Kalkin Hall

marketing class

Students in Professor Noordewier's BSAD 150 class discuss marketing strategy for a hydrogeb-fueled passenger vehicle, the focus of their semester-long group project.

3:50 p.m. Waterman Building


We caught Dennis Mahoney, professor of German, in his office, not working on the talk he'll give soon on Goethe's use of Greek mythology. Instead he was managing email as head of the Faculty Standards Committee for the College of Arts and Sciences -- that group that makes little decisions on tenure, reappointment and sabbatical requests.

4:02 p.m. Davis Center


This morning, Dani Walsh defended her master’s thesis on the grail quest in medieval literature. It’s a bit different than Monty Python's Holy Grail, she says, enjoying a celebratory coffee at Henderson’s Café in the Davis Center with professor of English Lisa Schnell.

4:03 p.m. Southwick Hall


Carl Chaffatt, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

4:07 p.m. Admissions Office

application review

Application review is already under way. Assistant director of admissions Kathleen Parent reviews a candidate for spring semester 2012.

4:14 p.m. Outside the Davis Center

prospective student

Dan Brickman and his son Tim, a high school senior, grab a granite bench and a breather during a full day checking out college options. On a trip up from their home in Connecticut, they started the morning across the lake at St. Lawrence University, then on to UVM in the afternoon. Tim's far from making a decision with places like Hobart, Dennison, and Dickinson also on his list. But he's heard good things about UVM from friends currently enrolled, and says Burlington definitely wins out over Canton in today's match-up of college town versus college town.

4:20 p.m. Southwick Hall

Jazz Ensemble

The UVM Jazz Ensemble has its work cut out for it. The group is rehearsing in Southwick Ballroom this afternoon,  getting ready for one concert this weekend at Homecoming and Family weekend and another in a few weeks with James Marsh Profess-at-Large Srinivas Krishnan, an Indian percussionist and singer.  This weekend’s concert is in good shape; the playing at rehearsal is tight and ready for prime time. The later concert is another story. After the group struggles with "Seven Butter," a composition by Brian Diller, based on an Indian rag, Jazz Ensemble director Alex Stewart asks students to put their instruments down and count out the complex and shifting rhythms in vocal unison: five measures of 1-2/1-2/1-2-3, another five of 1-2-3/ 1-2-3, back to five of 1-2/1-2/1-2-3 five of 1-2-3-4/1-2-3-4  and concluding with another five of 1-2/1-2/1-2-3. The first vocal attempt falters, the second is better. Then students pick up their instruments, nail it, and let out a yell in celebration. “Srini will be happy,” Stewart says. 

4:20 p.m. Davis Center


Shoes off in a quiet corner of the Davis Center, professor of political science Alec Ewald comes the bottom of a large stack of exams in his course, Constitutional Law of Civil Rights. He has 107 students, which means “321 answers to read,” he says. In a good exam, he thinks, reading answers should be rewarding for the professor just as writing them is for the student. “But it doesn’t always work out that way,” he says.

4:25 p.m. Patrick Gymnasium


First-year player Tierra Shumpert works on her game during a ball handling drill at Patrick Gym.

4:32 p.m. Mann Gymnasium


Students work on "challenging sequencing and musicality skills," says professor Paul Besaw, in this advanced modern dance class.

4:41 p.m. Health Sciences Research Facility


Joseph Clayton, lab technician, prepares assays for a study in Professor Matt Lord's laboratory. Asked for a layperson's description of the research focus in this biophysics and molecular physiology lab located in the Health Sciences Research Facility, Clayton takes a break from the pipette work, pauses to consider, and says, "We're looking at molecular motors and exploring their role in various cell processes."

5:30 p.m. King Street Center

King Street

Leah Bauder, a senior math education major enrolled in Alan Tinkler's service-learning course "Reading in the Content Area," tutors at King Street Center, a not-for-profit community organization that provides children and families the core life-building skills necessary for a healthy and productive future.

5:50 p.m. Ira Allen Chapel


Author Rebecca Skloot speaks at  Ira Allen Chapel. Her book, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, was required reading for first-year students over the summer.

6:18 p.m. Looking west


Sunset from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

6:30 p.m. Given Building

At tonight's Community Medical School presentation, William Pendlebury, M.D., professor of pathology, neurology and medicine, discussed “Biomarkers and Beyond: The Science of Diagnosing Alzheimer’s Disease.” “Alzheimer’s disease is the third most expensive disease after heart disease and cancer,” Pendlebury told the audience. “It is hoped that the scientific knowledge gained over the past quarter century, leading to a re-conceptualization of ‘Alzheimer’s disease’ proposed by these new criteria, will result in improved diagnosis -- and ultimately an effective disease-preventing therapy.”

6:32 p.m. Davis Center Oval


Sophomore Sarah Schumacher gets a lift to the Davis Center courtesy of her friend Michael Kardok, fellow sophomore. As if the free ride isn't enough, "Run!" Schumacher yells.

7 p.m. Burlington Waterfront


Although today's weather -- a sunny 67 degrees in Burlington -- might have suggested otherwise, winter in Vermont is around the corner. Geese depart for a warmer climate via the Lake Champlain corridor.

7 p.m. Old Mill


Taylor Sacco, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

7:01 p.m. Davis Center

Greek competition

Competitors in the annual Greek Life Gods and Goddesses competition line up for the event's first round. Standing before a Silver Maple Ballroom packed with their fellow brothers and sisters, the representatives from each of UVM's fraternity and sorority houses fielded questions such as: Tell us about your chapter's philanthropy focus and what it means to you? What chapter value do you embody? What is something you find unique about UVM's Greek community? And who is an alumna/us you look up to and why?

7:27 p.m. Stafford Hall


Students put their heads together in a lab section of "Microbiology and Infectious Diseases 101." Todd Cramer, a graduate teaching assistant for the course led by Professor Brenda Tessmann says the evening's session gives students experience in basic laboratory
techniques in the field such as bacterial conjugation, transformation, and transduction.

7:42 p.m. Davis Center


"Ultimate Outlaw" is on the air at student-run WRUV. DJ Sarah Attridge, a UVM junior, says she's particularly excited about sharing the new Fungi Girls recording on her rock/punk rock flavored show, which runs 6 to 8 p.m. on Tuesdays.

7:46 p.m. Ira Allen Chapel


Sacred Harp Sing from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

Socks and shoes are clearly not required to lead a sacred harp sing, nor, apparently, is a lovely voice, given the gracious invitation to one reporter to join the quietly joyful group that gathers once a week for two hours of old-fashioned singing -- a style that caught on here, one participant said, just after the American Revolution. "The sacred harp" refers to the human voice, an instrument accessible to all.

8 p.m. Muddy Waters, Main Street


Lilly Morgan, what are you doing today? from uvmtoday on Vimeo.

8:03 p.m. Williams Hall


Nick Earl, UVM Class of 2011, has the basement ceramics studio to himself as he does final smoothing on a series of pottery works. In addition to his own clay pursuits, Earl combines work as technician for the ceramic studio with a job coordinating music events for Burlington City Arts. Though he was focused on ceramic sculpture as a student, Earl says that since graduation he's been more interested in making pots. "They just seem more authentic to me at the moment," he says. "I enjoy people being able to use my work."

8:34 p.m. Champlain Mill, Winooski

prudent student

"Implied nudity" is the gist behind the Prudent Student Calendar, which particpating clubs and organizations sell to raise money. Here, members of the Women's Club Basketball team pose for their page in the upcoming edition.

9:53 p.m. Patrick Gymnasium


"Oof." “Gotchya!” Apparently, snowboarding is better preparation for dodgeball than skiing. Or at least tonight, at Gutterson Gymnasium, the Snowboard Team handed several defeats, and plenty of friendly barbs, to the Freestyle Ski Team. “It’s our sixth year of doing this game,” says Jared Necamp '13, one of the officers of the skiing team. “We’re very competitive in freeride, slopestyle, rail jams, half-pipe,” he says. Not so much in dodgeball.

10:17 p.m. Athletic Complex

climbing wall

Emma Logan ’13 works a problem on a climbing wall in a back hall of Gutterson.

10:35 p.m. Patrick Gymnasium


Leading a “salsa social,” introductory dance class, Ali Nickpour ‘14 and Natalie Bishop ’12 demonstrate the moves. They’re both officers in SASS, the University of Vermont’s Salsa and Swing Society.

11:37 p.m. Millis Hall


Even a college student's small motor skills are challenged as midnight approaches. As sophomore Jillian Blaisdell spins the lock on her mailbox yet agai

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