Panelists discuss opioid epidemic in Berkshires

Last Wednesday, panelists Alex Sabo of Berkshire Medical Center, Wendy Penner of the Northern Berkshire Community Coalition and Kenna Waterman of the nonprofit Josh Bressette Commit to Save a Life addressed the opioid epidemic in northwestern Massachusetts as a part of this year’s Williams
Reads initiative. 

Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward – this year’s Williams Reads book, which all incoming first-years read over the summer and discussed during First Days – deals with issues of racism, addiction and poverty. The program has extended beyond First Days, however, including a campus visit by Ward in October, a campus-wide installation titled “Complicated Love” this upcoming February and a panel on the opioid epidemic that was conducted this past week. 

“It’s a program that invites faculty, students, staff and community members to gather together to have a shared reading experience and to be able to explore diversity and have critical, engaging discussions,” Dean of the College Marlene Sandstrom explained at the panel.

Survey examines student attitudes toward midterm elections

Last Tuesday, 113 million citizens voted in the 2018 midterm elections, setting a record in raw vote total for a non-presidential election. Based on the 134 responses from a survey sent by the Record to 500 random unixes, students at the College have also involved themselves in the midterm elections, including discussing races with friends and professors, following day-by-day developments and voting.

MCLA hosts discussion with Ta-Nehisi Coates

On Thursday night, acclaimed writer Ta-Nehisi Coates spoke at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) in North Adams. Coates, a national correspondent for The Atlantic, is the author of the National Book Award-winning book Between the World and Me. His newest book, We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy, is a collection of his essays during the course of the Obama presidency.

Grant bolsters Islandora

Last Tuesday, the College announced that it received a $153,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation in support of the Islandora for All project. Islandora is an open-source software framework meant to consolidate and publicize faculty scholarship.

Ballot Questions 2 and 3 pass, 1 fails, incumbents reelected

Yesterday, Massachusetts voters decided on three ballot initiatives that appeared on their ballots alongside candidates for governor, senator and congressperson, among other offices. With 27 percent reporting, results showed voters overwhelmingly in favor of Question 2, which created a Citizens Commission to address the Citizens United Supreme Court case, and Question 3, which reaffirmed an anti-discrimination ordinance for transgender individuals.

MinCo advocates for increased funding

This weekend, a document written by the Minority Coalition (MinCo) Steering Committee began circulating, which explained MinCo’s plans to request that $34,000 of College Council’s (CC’s) remaining supplemental funding be allocated towards the MinCo supplemental fund. The fund, which currently consists of $6000, would be distributed to MinCo groups and other groups of underrepresented identities on campus, largely for Heritage Month events.

Students, community members hold vigils for shooting victims

Four days after the Tree of Life Synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh, Pa. and the Kroger supermarket shooting in Louisville, Ky., students, faculty and community members came together in Baxter Hall to mourn and remember the victims, console and comfort one another and inspire hope.

Dining Services introduces reusable takeout boxes

In recent weeks, the College has switched from compostable paper takeout boxes to reusable plastic takeout boxes at the dining facilities in Paresky.  

In 2010, with $5,000 from College Council, dining services began providing takeout boxes for students in Whitman’s, Lee Snack Bar and ’82 Grill.