Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

About Sandy Coleman

Sandy Coleman is the editor of the Wheaton Quarterly and Senior Associate Director in the Communications Office.

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Close-knit

Wheaton works to build community together

They showed up one by one and in large groups; in dresses and high heels, in athletic team uniforms and sneakers. They were students, professors, staff members, campus visitors; headed directly there or on their way elsewhere but drawn in—showing up in the early morning light as well as in the dark with hand-held glow sticks.

People couldn’t resist participating in the Unity Project, the interactive yarn-based art piece that developed string by string on the Dimple last fall. The project that was started nationwide by visiting artist Nancy Belmont and brought to campus by Professor Kelly Goff was meant to get the college community thinking about how we are all connected, even as we link ourselves and others to certain labels.

It served as the perfect visual metaphor for an academic year full of events, presentations, webcasts, faculty-led conversations and student-driven acts of social engagement—all part of the Building Community Together initiative that President Dennis M. Hanno began in 2015. The ongoing initiative seeks to foster an inclusive and welcoming community that appreciates and learns from diversity. [Read more...]

Talking about conversation

Provost Renée T. WhiteMagazine editor Sandy Coleman sat down with Provost Renée T. White to talk about the Community Conversations series that the provost started at Wheaton last fall. Inspired in response to racially charged incidents in the news at that time, the ongoing series aims to stimulate discussion, debate, reflection and a desire to take action. 

Sandy Coleman: The first conversation was “The Role of Colleges in Times of National Racial Crisis.” What do you think that role is?

Renée T. White: We are a place about learning, generating new ideas and facing challenges. So, we should be able to use that in response to social questions. Colleges and universities prepare students to be able to function in the world in ways that show that they are civically engaged, that they do their homework about big issues and that they’re open to understanding broader perspectives. That’s sort of the long-term role. The more immediate role involves organizing opportunities for critical thinking and engagement.

Coleman: How did the conversation series get off the ground? [Read more...]

A minute with…  Michael Sadowsky

Sadowsky with Seth MeyersEach summer, Michael Sadowsky ’18 manages to scout out and initiate his own opportunities for internships, which have provided the film and new media studies major with valuable experience in the entertainment industry as well as brought him face to face with celebrities. In 2014, he interned at Atlas Talent Agency in New York City, working in various roles. In 2015, he was at talent and literary agency ICM Partners in New York as the theater and concerts intern, landing the position with the assistance of Ben Chalot, associate director of career services in the Filene Center, who pointed Sadowsky to alumna and executive vice president at ICM Esther Newberg ’63. (She sent his resume along to the HR department, leading to a phone interview and internship.) In summer 2016, Sadowsky got a position as the production intern for “Late Night With Seth Meyers” in New York City. (Sadowsky and Meyers are pictured here.) So, what’s his secret to creating not-so-obvious opportunities? First comes love: “I can’t imagine anything more boring than being stuck in an internship you don’t have any interest in. My process of figuring out what I liked started in high school. I took a step back and tried to see what parts of school I really enjoyed. It happened to be English and the arts. From that point I started to get interested in the entertainment industry. I wanted to see what was behind the curtain.” Then, friends and family: “Look at your inner circle of family and friends and see whether anyone is connected in any way to the industry you are trying to get into. This is always a good starting point. It is a lot easier to be introduced to someone rather than introducing yourself. Use the resources around you.” Put your Wheaton resources to work: “Being at Wheaton has awesome advantages. Wheaton has amazing alums, who feel deeply connected to this community. Make an appointment at the Filene Center to see which alums are currently working in the field you’re interested in and email or call to introduce yourself. That person might be able to get your resume seen by the right people.” Hello, you don’t know me but…: “When all else fails, cold-calling or emailing people you don’t know yet or have a connection to can be your best friend. You can find people on LinkedIn, or go to company websites to find those who might be able to help you.”

Photo by Lloyd Bishop/© NBC

Open for business

In October 2016, Wheaton’s new social entrepreneur-in-residence Marcia Coné invited Ryan Letada ’08, CEO and co-founder of NextDayBetter, an organization that connects diaspora communities to create positive social change, to present a talk to students.

In October 2016, Wheaton’s new social entrepreneur-in-residence Marcia Coné invited Ryan Letada ’08, CEO and co-founder of NextDayBetter, an organization that connects diaspora communities to create positive social change, to present a talk to students.

Wheaton hires first social entrepreneur-in-residence

Wheaton has hired its first social entrepreneur-in-residence, Marcia Coné, formerly the founding CEO of the Women’s Fund of Rhode Island. In her new role, she will help students bring their ideas for change to life by connecting them with mentors, other social entrepreneurs and opportunities on and off campus.

The new position is supported by a grant from the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation to promote the steadily growing social innovation and social entrepreneurship initiatives on campus.

Coné, an accomplished writer, speaker, change strategist and advocate for women, has a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Western Illinois University and a master’s degree in clinical social work as well as a Ph.D. in social work from Boston College. She still holds her position as the chief strategist for the California-based Women’s Funding Network, a philanthropic organization that seeks to address gender equity to solve social issues ranging from poverty to global security.

She has been an adjunct professor at several institutions of higher education, including Boston College, Rhode Island College, St. Ambrose University and American University in Washington, D.C. At Wheaton, she has been a visiting professor for women and gender studies and business and management courses. She also has been a guest speaker on panels at Wheaton and provided training to students on negotiation and grant writing. [Read more...]