New VP for campus services

first_imgMeredith Weenick ’90, M.B.A. ’02, a seasoned administrator with significant operational experience in the nonprofit and public sectors, has been named vice president for campus services at Harvard University.“Managing the daily operations of an institution as large as Harvard while pursuing a strategic vision that supports its teaching and research mission requires a leader to maintain a delicate balance,” said Executive Vice President Katherine N. Lapp. “The skills that Meredith has honed with the city of Boston and several service-oriented organizations will be a tremendous asset to the University.”Weenick joined the city of Boston in 2002 as an HBS Leadership Fellow. She served for five years as a policy adviser to former Mayor Thomas M. Menino, working on citywide policy implementation in the areas of budget, finance, and performance management. In 2010, she became the city’s chief financial officer, overseeing its $2.6 billion operating budget and $1.8 billion capital budget, as well as its debt and investment management, financial auditing and reporting, and risk management. As a member of the mayor’s cabinet, she played a strategic role in organizational management and policy development.Prior to joining the city, Weenick spent more than 10 years in management positions in community service and workforce development, including service as the director of operations at City Year Boston and the deputy director of the Massachusetts Service Alliance, where she was responsible for the daily operations of the Massachusetts Governor’s Commission on National and Community Service.At Harvard, Weenick will assume responsibility for a department comprised of 1,600 employees and a wide portfolio that covers most of the critical operations of the campus, as well as such major University initiatives as the development of the Smith Campus Center and the Common Spaces program.“As an alumna of both the College and the Business School, I feel a tremendous connection to Harvard, which inspired me to public service and has had an immeasurable effect on my career,” Weenick said. “I am thrilled to have the opportunity to direct the team responsible for the day-to-day operations of the institution.”The vice president for campus services reports to the executive vice president and oversees a multifaceted group of operating service departments, including facilities services and property management, sustainability services, real estate management (both residential and commercial), dining and hospitality, event planning, engineering and utilities, transportation and parking, global support services and international student services, environmental health and safety, emergency management, and the campus service center. She will begin her duties at Harvard on July 14.Weenick lives in Boston, and she has been active in several volunteer organizations, including Transition House, a Cambridge-based nonprofit that supports women who are victims of domestic violence, where she served as treasurer and a member of the board of directors.last_img read more

E-cigarette battle heats up

first_imgElectronic cigarettes offer the promise of a less-harmful alternative to smoking tobacco, and even a way to slowly quit.But public health experts speaking at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Thursday said they worry the battery-powered smokes may provide a dangerous gateway for teens and others to start smoking.“E-cigarettes offer opportunity to reduce the harm associated with tobacco use,” said Vaughan Rees, lecturer on social and behavioral sciences and interim director of the Chan School’s Center for Global Tobacco Control. “On the other hand, I’m concerned the advent of e-cigarettes may undermine many of the gains we’ve made in controlling the use of tobacco during the last 50 years.”Rees was a panelist for a discussion titled “Can E-cigarette Regulation Protect the Public’s Health? Making Sense of the Science,” organized by the Center for Global Tobacco Control and the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences. It was presented in collaboration with Reuters and moderated by Scott Malone, Reuters’ editor in charge of general news for the northeastern United States.Rees spoke as Reuters reported that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that e-cigarette use by high school students increased to 13.4 percent in 2014 from 4.5 percent a year earlier. It also found tobacco cigarette over the same time dropped to 9.2 percent from 12.7 percent.The Food and Drug Administration took steps last April to regulate e-cigarettes for the first time, according to Howard Koh, professor of the practice of public health leadership and former assistant secretary for health for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.The FDA proposed rules that would ban sales to minors, require warning labels on e-cigarette packages, and bar free samples. They would not, however, regulate advertising. Currently, e-cigarette companies advertise their products using sex, glamour, and adventure — methods familiar from cigarette ads of the 1940s, said panelist Kasisomayajula Viswanath, professor of health communication at the Chan School and at the McGraw-Patterson Center for Population Sciences at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, a Harvard affiliate.“They suggest e-cigarettes can solve a lot of problems,” Viswanath said. The ads go beyond traditional media to social media used by teens, heightening the urgency for federal regulation, he said.The United States is among the countries that offer the least e-cigarette regulation, according to David Hammond, associate professor at the University of Waterloo School of Public Health and Health Systems, and a former adviser to the World Health Organization on Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.Hammond suggested the United States could learn from the international diversity of regulation. In Canada, e-cigarettes are not approved for sale. The European Union regulates e-cigarettes like tobacco, taxing and requiring product standards to reduce harm.Kenneth Warner, distinguished university professor of public health and former dean at the University of Michigan School of Public Health, called for “enlightened regulation.” Asked what he’d like to see, Warner proposed prohibiting emissions of clearly dangerous substances, prohibiting sales to minors, and barring e-cigarette smoking where tobacco is not allowed. He also suggested taxing e-cigarettes, though at a lower rate than on traditional cigarettes to make nicotine addiction less sustainable.The rise of e-cigarettes has served as a reminder that the fight to overcome tobacco-related deaths has not been won, Koh said.“There is a misperception that this problem has been solved and it’s time to move on to something else,” Koh said. “Nothing can be further from the truth. No other condition kills a half-million Americans every year. No other is projected to kill 1 billion worldwide in the 21st century. This discussion should be viewed as part of that discussion of how to move tobacco control forward, to end this epidemic once and for all.”last_img read more

No rest for the graying

first_imgWith the elderly beginning to outnumber the young around the world, workers, employers, and policymakers are rethinking retirement — what work we do, when to stop, and how to spend our later years.The global demographic transition, described by a panel Thursday at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, is tied to rapidly expanding life spans and declining birthrates. While it is furthest along in developed nations such as Italy, Japan, Germany, and France — with the United States not far behind — it is also a factor in rapidly developing nations like China and India.“By far the most important thing is that societies are undergoing a demographic transition the world has never seen,” said Lisa Berkman, the Thomas D. Cabot Professor of Public Policy, Epidemiology, and Global Health and Population at the Harvard Chan School and director of the Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies. “Never before in human history have we had aging societies. And by aging societies we mean there are more people over 60 than there are under 5.”The largest impact will likely occur at the intersection of work and retirement, said Berkman.An increase in retirement years is already beginning to stress Social Security, created when most people lived just a year or two after receiving benefits and many among disadvantaged populations didn’t live long enough to receive any.Berkman was joined at the event — “The Aging Workforce: Challenges and Benefits for the Public’s Health” — by Francine Grodstein, a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School; Debra Whitman, chief public policy officer for AARP; and Christina Matz-Costa, a senior research associate at the Center on Aging & Work at Boston College. Chris Arnold of National Public Radio moderated the discussion.Crucial to understanding the issue, Berkman said, is the idea that seniors who continue working will take jobs from younger people. This is a fallacy, she said, because people who continue to work spur new employment, creating enough jobs to go around.That doesn’t mean that employers are always willing to hire older workers hunting for jobs, making age discrimination a significant problem.Whitman said that surveys of AARP members show that most expect to work into their 60s and 70s. This is good news from a health standpoint, she said, because the engagement that work provides supports cognitive health, slows mental decline, and lessens isolation. It’s also good news for the economy, she said, because the Baby Boomer generation is the best educated and most experienced in history.But many workers who expect to stay on the job aren’t doing it for their health. Retirement was once considered a three-legged stool, Whitman said, supported by Social Security, savings, and private pensions. But pensions especially have grown wobbly over the past three decades.While continuing to work is an option for the healthy, the disabled and sick, who make up about half the aging population, face a range of serious challenges, many financial.Panelists said it’s important for employers to understand that diversity in the workplace, known to improve productivity and innovation, includes having employees of different ages working side by side.Physical challenges — particularly for those in demanding jobs — can be met by shifting assignments, increasing mentoring, and using ergonomically designed equipment that reduces physical strain. And work patterns should be reviewed, the experts said. Older workers are often most interested in part-time or periodic employment. Also key, as Matz-Costa pointed out, is that employees have a chance to do tasks they find meaningful and engaging.“Thinking about [work] more broadly could be crucial in the coming decades,” Berkman said.Being able to work, of course, depends on maintaining health into old age. Changes to diet and lifestyle can make a major difference, Grodstein said, even if they don’t come until midlife or older.“It’s never too early to start and it’s never too late to start.”last_img read more

Bureau of Study Counsel gives Barrett Award to 3 College students

first_imgOn May 6, 2019, the Bureau of Study Counsel (BSC) presented the Joseph L. Barrett Award to Deja Morehead ’20, Andrew Perez ’20, and James Bedford ’20. The award commemorates Joseph L. Barrett ’73 by honoring exceptional students who give their time to support their peers in developing more meaningful college experiences.Deja was honored for her conscientious and dedicated service as a BSC Economics Peer Tutor Fellow (EPTF) and as a voting member of the Honor Council. She has supported students through these roles with kindness, compassion and skill. As an EPTF, she demonstrated a strong grasp of the complexity of peer tutoring and the challenges of supporting students in difficult courses. She spearheaded with another EPTF a group exam prep night. As a member of the Honor Council, she strongly believes in the need for student representation and has played a key role in exploring the complexity of academic integrity issues in a reflective practice group that meet at the BSC. Deja showed maturity beyond her years and impressive thoughtfulness about the ways to approach difficult conversations about ethical conflicts among the student body.Andrew and James were honored for their unwavering commitment to the creation of a pre-orientation program, the First-Year Retreat and Experience (FYRE), which was launched in August 2018. They introduced FYRE participants to resources on campus, offered basic cultural capital through small-group conversations and friendship, and fostered connections with faculty and others in a broad community of learners. The successful launch of the program has made a real difference in the lives of fellow students — providing them with essential navigational support, networking, practical information, and perspective-takinglast_img read more

‘Soul,’ ‘Ma Rainey’s’ among AFI’s top 10 films of the year

first_imgThe American Film Institute on Monday announced its top 10 films of the year, including Pixar’s jazz themed “Soul” and two of Chadwick Boseman’s final films: the August Wilson adaptation “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” and Spike Lee’s Vietnam drama “Da 5 Bloods,” both of which are Netflix films. Other selections included “Mank,” “Nomadland,” “One Night in Miami…,” “Minari” and “Judas and the Black Messiah.” The organization also included a special citation for “Hamilton.” In lieu of the annual luncheon celebrating the honorees, the AFI will hold a virtual benediction on Feb. 26 streaming on YouTube and the AFI website.last_img

Kozol talks on segregation

first_img “Inequalities are unmistakable to anyone who walks into our public schools, but even more disheartening, black and Hispanic children — in the present moment, in the present year, 2010 — are more isolated mentally and more segregated physically than in any time since 1968,” Kozol said. “If it’s good enough for the son of a president or the daughter of a rich CEO, then it’s good enough for the children of the poorest mother in South Bend,” Kozol said. Kozol, who has been involved with the education system for more than 40 years, said segregation is back in American schools and he’s witnessed it “from both sides.” Kozol also said his “rich white friends” and politicians do not want to talk about these issues. He said many people do not like to hear what he has to say, but that isn’t going to stop him. “Life goes so fast — use it well.” During the lecture, he discussed his work with one first grade teacher whose class was made up of low-income, minority students. He said she was not going to always center her class on the standards, but rather try to make learning enjoyable. Kozol also discussed his frustrations with the standardized testing that is the driving force of most public school curriculums. The Office for Civil and Social Engagement (OCSE) at Saint Mary’s sponsored the lecture. According to Kozol, the conditions of the school were poor, and he taught class in an auditorium he shared with another fourth grade class. Kozol said the arts, and even recess, have been dialed back or removed from some schools that struggle to maintain student test scores. He said some schools in Atlanta no longer build playgrounds for their elementary schools. center_img “I’m too old to bite my tongue, and I don’t really care what happens to me now and no matter what the price I have to pay, I intend to keep on fighting in this struggle to my dying day,” Kozol said. “All year long, everything is driven by the test. It excludes everything that won’t be tested, robbing urban children of the entire richness of curriculum and capaciousness of culture that won’t be on the test,” Kozol said. “It was of consummate importance to give her children opportunities to speak their minds, indulge their curiosities so that they would think of learning as an exciting pilgrimage rather than a forced march to a pre-established destination,” Kozol said. Kozol ended his lecture with a lesson he said he’s learned as time goes on. The need for social reform within the education system was the main theme of best-selling author and former educator Jonathan Kozol at his sold-out lecture in Saint Mary’s O’Laughlin Auditorium on Monday night. Kozol, who has written several books on segregation in the public school system, discussed the state of education in America using his own experiences. A Harvard graduate and former Rhodes scholar, Kozol started his teaching career in what he said was the poorest area of Boston, teaching fourth grade. “My students had had a string of 12 different teachers in the previous two years,” Kozol said. “This string of instability of faculty is still the case today in far too many of today’s inner-city schools.” Schools with students who are what Kozol referred to as privileged youth allow for a much less rigid education, he said. last_img read more

Will Annette Bening Star in Shakespeare in the Park’s King Lear?

first_img Show Closed This production ended its run on Aug. 17, 2014 View Comments Bening earned a Tony nod for her performance in Coastal Disturbances. She has also appeared on stage in Medea and The Female of the Species. She received Oscar nominations for her roles in the films The Kids Are All Right, Being Julia, American Beauty and The Grifters. As previously reported, Oscar nominee and Tony winner John Lithgow will play the titular father figure in King Lear, which will run from July 22 through August 17 at the Delacorte Theater under the direction of Daniel Sullivan. The free Shakespeare in the Park season will also include a production of Much Ado About Nothing starring Hamish Linklater and Lily Rabe (which caused Rabe to drop out of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay—Part 2). Related Shows King Lear Annette Bening could soon be appearing on stage as a “thankless child.” According to uncomfirmed reports from Showbiz 411, the Tony and Oscar nominee has agreed to appear in the Public Theater’s 2014 Shakespeare in the Park production of King Lear as Goneril, the monarch’s eldest daughter.last_img read more

Rachel Tucker on Unleashing Her Inner Dominatrix in London’s Communicating Doors

first_img View Comments After a passionate Broadway debut in the short-lived Sting musical The Last Ship, Belfast-born actress-singer Rachel Tucker has returned to London to head the cast of the Menier Chocolate Factory revival of Alan Ayckbourn’s Communicating Doors, currently in previews and opening May 13. A onetime Elphaba in Wicked, Tucker shifts gears in the comic thriller to play a dominatrix who goes by the name Poopay—Mary-Louise Parker played the same role off-Broadway in 1998. Broadway.com caught up with the effervescent talent to discuss not singing for a change on stage and her memories of the Great White Way.You’ve got some of the best lungs in the business but there’s no singing this time around, is there?[Laughs.] Not here! I love musicals and I absolutely love singing, but I also really love acting. The older I get, the more I want to do straight stuff. I think it’s important that I show people I’m not just a set of lungs or a big voice.The character of Poopay, too, is quite a challenge.This has been a big stretch for me. I’ve never had to learn so many words in my life and in such an intense short period and with a Cockney accent on top. That’s something I’ve never done before and I’ve loved it; It’s important to keep me on my toes.How thrilled were you to get the offer?I was thrilled to be seen for a role like this. I mean, a cockney dominatrix prostitute: everything I had never played before [laughs]. It took me by surprise, I have to say, but my husband [director Guy Retallack] has done a couple of [Alan Ayckbourn] plays and I absolutely love his stuff.How do you research playing a dominatrix?That’s been interesting! I did speak to an actual dominatrix called Miss Josephine, which was quite eye-opening and it was fascinating to see the extent to which this world really does exist but quite privately and quietly. Each to their own, I suppose.What did you discover from Miss Josephine?I was struck by the fact that she’s got standards and that even in this world there are standards. She sees herself as quite a high-class dominatrix—for one thing, she wears leather and good leather, not PVC.The time-travel element of the play must be interesting in that the “future” envisaged when the play was first written was 2014, which has now come and gone.We’ve pushed 2014 to 2020 so that’s our “future,” which is only five years ahead. It’s been tricky in rehearsals finding those little things that act as big indicators as to where we are but what’s wonderful about Alan’s writing is that he is able to convince the audience of all this using just one hotel room and a couple of sets of doors.You mention acting as opposed to singing but what’s notable about your work in musicals is the way you combine both.I’m so glad you think so because when I teach kids about musical theater, my big battle is to impress upon them that it’s not about the singing: it’s got to come from your acting choices before you start the music, and I think that’s what a lot of people don’t get right. I almost feel on this play as if I could sing my lines because I know where I’m coming from with it.Now there’s an idea: Communicating Doors—the Musical![Laughs.] Oh god, absolutely! There’s definitely room to turn this into a musical. Poopay could have a good old cockney song – but the text is so rich that I think it’s better as a play.Speaking of musicals, did you follow the Tony nominations to see how The Last Ship fared?I got the news [of the show’s two nods] after that day’s rehearsals and I was just so delighted that Sting got recognized for his score and Rob Mathes for his orchestrations: I was so happy for them both.Do you think the show might have got more nominations if it had opened later in the season?Well, I don’t think it was an accident that The Last Ship opened when it did. The creative team clearly thought the show was going to run. They obviously thought it was going to be successful and be a massive revenue hit; I mean, we all did.What did you do right after the show closed?I stayed on in New York for about 10 days with the cast and we chilled out and went to parties and saw a couple of shows. That was a nice cooling-down period before getting ready to go home. I’d spent nine or 10 months on the production, so it felt important to be able to say goodbye properly to that chapter of my life.Any plans for a second album? [Tucker’s first, The Reason, came out in 2013].I’d love to do another, but they take me about three years to do and I had to work the last one into my career when I knew I had the time. It worked well because I was pregnant with my son and then had time to work on the album after I had given birth. Maybe I’ll do another album the next time we have another go at having a child!Did your son come away from his time in the States with a New York accent?He did! He’s two now and he would say words like “more” with a little American twang but now that he’s back in London it’s kind of a mixture.Do you have other musicals on the horizon?I’d absolutely love to have a go at Beautiful. I’ve got loads of Carole King’s music and love her stuff. And while I was in New York, I also went to see Cabaret, and of course I’d give my right arm to play that role [Sally Bowles]. That’s the thing about this business: you never know!last_img read more

$2 Million available for bicycle, pedestrian projects

first_imgGovernor Announces $2 Million Available for Bicycle and PedestrianProjectsMontpelier, Vt. – Governor Jim Douglas has announced the availability of$2 million in funds for bicycle and pedestrian projects.Governor Douglas said the $2 million is designated for design, acquisitionof right-of-way, and construction of bike and pedestrian projects aroundVermont. To qualify, projects must have a completed feasibility study oran equivalent review.”Encouraging new bicycle and pedestrian projects is part of our ongoingcommitment to creating a truly multi-modal transportation system,”Governor Douglas said.Last year the Governor’s budget included funding for bicycle andpedestrian projects that was awarded to 45 municipalities including: WestRutland, Newfane, Cavendish, Morristown, St. Johnsbury, Burlington,Colchester, Richford, Newport, Hartford, Woodstock, Dover, Bakersfield,Waitsfield, Weybridge, Bennington, Montpelier-Berlin, Plainfield andBrattleboro.Since 1993 the Agency of Transportation has funded 65 miles of bicycle andpedestrian facilities statewide.Municipalities interested in applying for the funds should contact theirregional planning commission for more information about the applicationprocess. Municipalities will be responsible for 10% local match.Applications are to be submitted to the Agency of Transportation byFriday, October 1, 2004.###last_img read more

10 money lessons from ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’

first_img 18SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr by: Donna FreedmanThis week, I went to see “Avengers: Age of Ultron” and watched with an eye toward personal finance lessons. Looking for money wisdom in pop culture is a habit of mine.Nerdy? Yes.Frugal? That too! I’m getting paid to see movies like “Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Captain America: The Winter Soldier.”While it’s definitely a popcorn romp in which a whole lotta stuff gets blowed up real good, life lessons are there: teamwork, fortitude, caring about your fellow man.Money matters are there, too. Enjoy the popcorn, but absorb the lessons.1. Cooperate with colleaguesWhen the Avengers face what looks like an unbeatable foe, one of them asks how they can possibly defeat it. “Together,” replies Captain America (Chris Evans). continue reading »last_img read more