The Williams Record

(Rachel Buccalo/The Williams Record)

A year into the pandemic, staff still face unique burdens

Joey Fox and Nigel Jaffe April 14, 2021
The Record sent a survey to every staff member at the College, and spoke with seven of them about their experiences since the pandemic began. The stories they told speak to the challenges staff have confronted in the past year, the ways staff feel they do and don’t fit in at Williams, and the hopes many staff have for a post-COVID future.
(Map courtesy of the Massachusetts vaccination location webpage.)

How on-campus students will get vaccinated — and how some already have

Annie Lu and Grady Short April 14, 2021
Beginning April 19, the College will provide transportation to COVID-19 vaccination sites at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Parish Center in North Adams and Berkshire Community College in Pittsfield for students, faculty, and staff without personal transportation. In the meantime, some students who are already eligible have been able to get vaccines.
Town CO2 Lowering Committee proposes Net Zero Resolution

Town CO2 Lowering Committee proposes Net Zero Resolution

Declan Houlihan April 14, 2021
The Williamstown CO2 Lowering (COOL) Committee is pushing the Town to adopt its Net Zero Resolution, which calls for action to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions and begin implementing a comprehensive climate action plan by 2023.
Bates' lockdown follows several other colleges' rise in cases and subsequent increased restrictions. (Photo Courtesy of Wentworth Washington/Wikipedia Commons.)

In Other Ivory Towers: Colleges implement lockdowns after spikes in cases

Kellen Bryant and Megan Lin April 14, 2021
In recent months, several colleges and universities — including Bates, Dartmouth, and Duke — have been placed on lockdown in response to rising cases on campus. In all three of these cases, administrators cited illicit gatherings as a main source of infections.
MCLA sent all students home on April 11 following an outbreak of 28 cases on campus. (Photo Courtesy of Magic Piano/Wikimedia Commons.)

MCLA transitions to remote learning after 28 on-campus cases

Kellen Bryant and Megan Lin April 14, 2021
All classes at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) have transitioned to remote format as of April 5 and residence halls closed on April 11. President James Birge announced the move to remote learning in an email to the MCLA community on April 1, after 28 on-campus students at MCLA tested positive for COVID-19.
Spring Street Blues

Spring Street Blues

Campus Safety and Security April 14, 2021
7:34 a.m. Faculty Club: Officers responded to an intrusion alarm caused by a contractor who did not know the system was armed. The Dining staff arrived and would remain on site while the contractor was in the building.
Without help from the College, the term-limited faculty whose contracts have already ended or will end after this semester must find new positions. Many are struggling to navigate job markets with little demand for their labor. (The Williams Record/Emily Zheng)

Term-limited faculty face uncertain futures amid pandemic job market

Jacob Posner, Josh Kirschner, and Katharine Cook April 7, 2021
During spring 2020, despite widespread calls for support from term-limited faculty members, the College declined to offer a blanket extension of all term-limited faculty members’ contracts, citing financial uncertainty. Instead, it provided term-limited faculty members the option to take an unpaid research associate position to aid in the job search. While some term-limited professors were ultimately offered extensions on a case-by-case basis, others were left to face a beleaguered job market.
College used WiFi data to track presence at Wood party, increases CSS patrols in dorms

College used WiFi data to track presence at Wood party, increases CSS patrols in dorms

Lucy Walker April 7, 2021
The College used WiFi data as part of its investigation of the Feb. 26 Wood House party, Dean Sandstrom and Director of CSS Dave Boyer told the Record. Boyer also said that the College has increased CSS patrols in students’ residential spaces following the party.
The Select Board interviewed Charles T. Blanchard for the position of interim town manager, with the recording posted on WilliNet. (Photo Courtesy of WilliNet.)

Select Board chooses Charles Blanchard as interim town manager

Ella Marx April 7, 2021
At a special meeting on Monday, the Select Board unanimously chose Charles T. Blanchard, the retired town manager of Palmer, Mass., to serve as the interim town manager of Williamstown.
WPD employee complaint alleges that sgt. who filed lawsuit committed misconduct himself

WPD employee complaint alleges that sgt. who filed lawsuit committed misconduct himself

Ella Marx April 7, 2021
The Berkshire Eagle recently obtained a copy of the employee complaint against Williamstown Police Department (WPD) Sergeant Scott McGowan alleging that McGowan, who filed a lawsuit against the Town and WPD in August alleging misconduct, had himself perpetrated sexual and racial harassment. The complaint led the department to place McGowan on paid administrative leave last month.
Matt Sheehy to leave College for Deerfield Academy

Matt Sheehy to leave College for Deerfield Academy

Fiona Seibert April 7, 2021
Associate Vice President for Finance and Administration Matt Sheehy will leave the College to take the position of Chief Financial Officer at Deerfield Academy, a boarding school in Massachusetts, beginning Aug. 1, Vice President for Finance and Administration Fred Puddester announced in the March 31 Daily Messages. 
Amherst’s decision to divest from fossil fuels comes on the heels of student advocacy on behalf of climate justice (Photo Courtesy of David Emmerman).

In Other Ivory Towers: Amherst joins Middlebury, Wesleyan in pledge to divest from fossil fuels

Tali Natter and Kitt Urdang April 7, 2021
On March 31, Amherst College formalized its commitment to divest its endowment from fossil fuels, joining several other NESCAC institutions, including Middlebury and Wesleyan, in plans to divest.
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