Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts
Wheaton College
Staff Council

Staff News: December 2012

  • NOLA members

    New Orleans Alternative Break (NOLA)

    In August of 2005 Hurricane Katrina left much of New Orleans in ruins. Every year since then, the Alternative Winter Break group has organized a trip during Winter break which exemplifies Wheaton’s dedication to service. Jennifer Irving, 2012 NOLA President, Jessie Durand and Dana Polanichka, NOLA Co-Advisors, and all of the NOLA group members are preparing for the annual trip to help in the ongoing efforts to rebuild New Orleans.

    Throughout the year, NOLA group members hold fundraisers, sells baked goods, chocolate bars, and tee shirts to help defray travel costs to New Orleans. The group hosted its largest fundraiser of the year at the Faculty/Staff Holiday Craft Fair. There were numerous raffle prizes donated by participants of the fair and by local businesses and that meant many happy raffle drawing winners! The trip is scheduled for January 13–20, 2013. All the best to NOLA's group of very dedicated volunteers.

    Click on a photo to view the gallery:

  • Holiday Craft Fair

    'Tis the Season!

    There has been a lot of buzz in the Atrium lately. The Holiday Vendor Fair was held on Friday, Novemeber 30th, and the Faculty/Staff Holiday Craft Fair was held the following Friday on December 7th, 2012. Both fairs drew many holiday shoppers from the Wheaton community.

    The Faculty/Staff Holiday Craft Fair is an annual event that carries forward a long-standing tradition, celebrating the many skillful artists among us in our faculty and staff colleagues. The fair provides meaningful gift items, and convenient holiday shopping at this busy time of year.

    Click on a photo to view the gallery:

  • New Baby for Jill Ostrowski

    It's a boy!

    Congratulations to Jill Ostrowski and husband Jeff Mathot who are the proud new parents of a beautiful baby boy! Little Michael Mathot was welcomed into the world on November 27, 2012, weighing in at a healthy 10.36 lbs and 21.5 inches long. Michael was welcomed home by his three sisters and two brothers-lots of helping hands!

  • people in garden

    Summer Bounty

    The calendar may say December but the annual arrival of seed catalogs will be filling mailboxes shortly after the last of the holiday greeting cards! Michelle Monti, Hannah Benoit and Dave Laferriere of the Communications Office planted a small garden this past summer behind their building at 10 Library Square. They grew sunflowers and tomatoes and had a lot of fun tending the plot on their lunch hours. Next year, who knows? Maybe they'll get crazy and try green beans. Pictured here are Hannah and Michelle harvesting their bounty.

Learning opportunities


  • Grinch

    Staff Holiday Pot Luck Lunch

    Celebrate the holidays with your fellow staff by coming together to share in a meal. RSVP with your favorite dish to share. Don't like to cook? That's ok!  Simply RSVP with your small contribution of $5.00 to cover any remaining items needed.

    RSVP to Conference & Event Services: events@wheatoncollege.edu by Wednesday, December 12, 2012.

    Supplies and other gift items will be collected at the pot luck lunch for the Norton Head Start Program. Gifts are optional but appreciated. Many thanks for your participation. Suggested items are: tissue, scissors, small notebooks, paint brushes, construction paper, hand sanitizer, glue/glue sticks, Play-Doh products, pencils, tape, crayons, paints, markers, pipe cleaners and other craft supplies, pre-school story books, wooden craft sticks.

    Wednesday, December 19, 2012
    12:00 - 2:00 p.m.
    Beard Field House

  • Photo of Sam Coale

    Sam Coale presents free lecture

    Sam Coale teaches American literature and culture at Wheaton College in Massachusetts. His two latest books include The Entanglements of Nathaniel Hawthorne: Haunted Minds and Ambiguous Approaches (2011) and Quirks of the Quantum: Postmodernism and Contemporary American Fiction published in the October of 2012.

    Coale delivered a paper on Hawthorne as tourist-as-romancer in Florence, Italy at a conference in June and is writing a Hawthorne bibliography online for Oxford University Press as well as an introduction to a collection of essays on “Teaching Hawthorne.” He most recently lectured in Japan, Lebanon, and Jordan.

    "Hawthorne: Haunted Minds and Ambiguous Approaches"
    Tuesday, January 8, 2013
    1:30 – 3:00 p.m.
    Hindle Auditorium, Science Center
    Wheaton College



  • Recycle those ink cartridges and cell phones for a good cause!

    The North Attleboro Animal Shelter is participating in an empty ink jet/laser cartridge recycle program, and a cell phone recycling program. All proceeds go directly to the animal shelter. Donations can be left in a bin in the new or old Science Center lobby.

    To arrange pick-up of your donations instead, contact Karen Carpenter at 508-286-3846.

    For more information, go to www.petfinder.com. Thank you for supporting the environment, and our furry friends!

  • Looking for Avon products?

    I have been selling Avon for 20 years. Get in touch and I will get a catalog to you. Lots of great ideas for the holidays. Contact Susan McNary at x3905 or by email: mcnary_susan@wheatoncollege.edu

Human Resources

  • red poinsettia

    News from Human Resources

    New Hires

    10/22/12 – Joseph Swartz, Building Service Worker, Building Services
    10/30/12 – Melissa Rideout, College Counselor, Counseling Center
    11/1/12 – Matthew Engstrom, Public Safety Officer, Public Safety
    11/5/12 – Shawn Medeiros, Interim Sports Information Director, Athletics

    Vision of Service Award

    Nominations for Staff Service Excellence Awards
    * President's Award for Outstanding Service (for an individual staff member)
    * Vision of Service Award (for a staff department or team)
    * Gladys Kelley Memorial Award for Professional Development (for staff professional development funds)

    Just a reminder that it is time to submit nominations to recognize the excellent service of staff members and staff departments or teams, including an award that will provide a staff member with access to $500 to use for professional development (e.g. to attend conferences or workshops or to purchase self-study materials).

    President's Award for Outstanding Service

    Each year up to four staff members may be selected to receive the President's Award for Outstanding Service. This award includes a choice of one week's pay or an extra week of vacation, a reserved parking space, name placed on a plaque in Balfour Hood, and a special celebratory luncheon with the President.

    One staff department, committee or work team may be selected to receive the Vision of Service Award. This award includes a day off with pay for each team member, recognition on a plaque, and a special celebratory luncheon with the President.

    You can nominate a staff member by going to the Human Resources website. If you do not have access to a computer, nomination forms for all awards are available from Human Resources. Forms may also be downloaded by clicking on the Staff Excellence Awards link.

    The deadline for receipt of nominations is January 18, 2013. Award recipients will be announced at the March 24, 2013 Service Awards program. Please take this opportunity to show your appreciation for outstanding service by submitting nominations for these awards.

    Voluntary Retirement Updates

    The maximum employee contribution to retirement for 2013 will be increasing to $23,000. There is also a special “catch-up” allowance for individuals age 50 and above. These individuals may contribute an additional $5,500. If you are interested in learning more about this or wish to increase your voluntary contribution to retirement, please contact Human Resources at extension 8206 or email them.

    Did You Know?

    To comply with Federal regulations, effective January 1, 2012, Faculty and Staff who wish to enroll eligible dependents into health and dental plans are required to present evidence of their dependent’s eligibility, such as marriage certificates or birth certificates. This also applies to employees making changes during open enrollment.

    Please Remember: If you need to be absent from work for more than ten consecutive working days for any reason other than scheduled vacation, you must contact the Human Resources department to initiate the leave of absence process. We will review the application process, the continuation of benefits and/or salary and provide any forms necessary to complete. In addition to explaining Wheaton’s leave of absence policy, we will explain the rights under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and any other applicable federal and state regulations.

    Weather Emergencies:

    Since Wheaton is primarily a residential college, our operations will normally continue unless weather conditions are so serious that a decision is made to close the college or delay opening. When the weather is bad, you can find out if the college is closing or delaying opening by calling the announcement line at 508-286-8285 or visiting the college’s home page. If there are no messages on the announcement line or home page, the college is open as usual.


  • EAP poster

    EAP All One Health Resources

    Staff and Faculty are reminded that the holidays can be a stressful time for many. EAP provides counseling and offers referrals to help employees cope with life's day-to-day stressers ranging from time management to major life events. The number to call is 800-451-1834 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week).

    For additional information about this and other benefits, contact the Human Resources office.

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