Week of January 17, 2022

Katie Dobkowski wrote to us on behalf of the Purposeful Work Infusion Project.  Now is the perfect time to consider whether you’d like to join (or re-join!) the Purposeful Work Infusion Project during this term – Infusion is a curricular program that has been going strong since Winter 2014.

What are the benefits of participating? For starters, recent nationally representative research the Bates Purposeful Work team conducted with Gallup found that having a college class that considers how to pursue meaning in work is one of the four drivers for finding meaning and purpose in work after graduating (in other words, the Infusion model WORKS, on a national scale!). Furthermore, this meaning and purpose in work matters – in that same study, we found that people who have purposeful work are nearly 10 times more likely to have high overall well-being than people who have not found purpose in their work.

If you join the Purposeful Work Infusion Project, the following opportunities will be available to you and your class(es):

• Access to funding for guest speakers who talk about their career decision-making, search for purpose in work related to class material, and/or other “purposeful work” topics – this year we are able to fund up to four virtual guest speakers per infused course ($50 honorarium per speaker)

• The opportunity to engage in a pedagogical discussions with colleagues – at least one opportunity per semester

• Access to many resources in our Purposeful Work Infusion Lyceum site, compiled by your peers, including suggestions for class activities, Purposeful Work-related readings, guest speaker packets, syllabus information, and reflective writing prompts

• Addition of a “Purposeful Work” course attribute to your class listing in the Garnet Gateway

  • More than 94% of the students taking part would encourage their peers to take a Purposeful Work Infusion Course

• Over 70% of students in Infusion courses say the Purposeful Work elements enhanced their understanding and engagement in the course

More information is available online at the Purposeful Work Infusion website. 

Jay Phillips of Facilities sent a message reminding us that extreme cold temperatures pose a risk for the potential of frozen or burst pipes in our buildings, particularly in areas where the cold air and wind are able to infiltrate into buildings. Please take an extra moment to ensure that all windows in your area are closed and locked, and that heaters are not blocked. Please refer to Facilities’ website for additional information regarding heating and adjusting the heat in your space. You may also submit a service request, send them an email at facility-work-request@groups.bates.edu, or call them at 207-786-6204 with any necessary repairs that need to be made.

Tyler Harper wrote to us as co chair of the MLK Day Committee.  This year’s MLK Day program is now live.  On the MLK website, you will see links to register for events, including the keynote presentation, the annual Bates/Morehouse debate, and the many other exciting activities available. Please note: you must register separately for each event you would like to attend. 

You may register for the event up until the time the event starts. However, if you are able to please register for events, particularly workshops, as early as possible. Although registration will not close until five minutes after the event has begun, it is helpful for workshop organizers to have a sense as to how many participants they should expect ahead of time.  If anyone has any questions, concerns or thoughts please feel free to reach out to Cliff Odle or Tyler, or anyone else on the MLK Committee

Anthony Shostak of the Museum of Art sent along an updated Curricular Connections document.  The attached updated Curricular Connections document includes changes to events in response to the ongoing pandemic and a date change for Lesley Dill’s lecture.

Shonna Humphrey, from Sponsored Programs and Research Compliance, wrote with a policy and compliance reminder about the Bates policy for engaging/paying foreign nationalsPlease do not pay foreign collaborators individually/personally and then seek personal reimbursement. These payments should originate from Bates, not you personally, so we can stay in compliance with the IRS. The finance office is seeing an uptick in this sort of policy violation as we all develop workarounds for travel or hosting guests on campus. That kind of creativity can be great, but the accounting and tax implications can also be severe. Again, please review the full policy here. 

“To comply with tax reporting requirements, payments to individuals for services must be paid directly by Accounts Payable and should not be paid by employees and then requested for reimbursement. “

Dot Letourneau in Payroll should be consulted before any invitation is extended, and Bates should always pay them directly, not reimburse faculty or staff after payment has already been made.

Hoi Ning Ngai of Purposeful Work wrote to send out an invitation to those of you who may be interested in joining their Bates Colleagues of Color Group, especially new colleagues who’ve recently joined our faculty and staff listservs.  The group currently has two communication mechanisms — a Google Group and a Slack workspace — to help us as faculty and staff of color stay connected with each other throughout the year. (NOTE: A winter/spring email will be going out to the Google Group soon!).  We come together — to share experiences, to provide support, to celebrate wins, to navigate challenges — we’ve grown over the past year to include staff and faculty across the College.  As we navigate a new academic semester, we wanted to extend another open invitation to any faculty and staff who may be seeking community and connection with other colleagues of color across campus. Whether you’re hoping to find folks with shared experiences, avoid isolation in what can be a challenging environment, or make friends to have Maine adventures with, we’d love to assist. There are no formal expectations of anyone who joins the group except to respect the space and engage as you feel comfortable.  If you’d like to join our group — particularly our communications platforms — please reach out to Hoi Ning and you will be added immediately.

Mike Milliken of Human Resources wrote about the B Well program.  The B Well program is offering a free Fitbit Inspire 2 device to any employee of the college who would like one.  The Fitbit Inspire 2 is a digital watch which tracks steps, exercise, heart rate, sleep and more.  Learn more about the device in this short video.  In addition to the device itself, you’ll also receive a 12 month subscription to Fitbit’s premium membership which offers a long list of resources ranging from healthy recipes, follow along workouts, detailed sleep analytics, mindfulness meditations and more.  To sign up to receive your device: simply complete this form and we send your device via interoffice mail.

Next, upcoming events. I will use these weekly emails to draw your attention to upcoming events, but you are also welcome to check this link for real-time updates.

Time Management Workshop:In this 60 minute virtual session we will engage in a conversation about time management in a way that is authentic to our diverse experiences and identities. As part of this work we will reflect on how we conceptualize and articulate our goals and explore how to align our work time with our personal and institutional priorities. We will have online break out activities so everyone can engage these ideas in small groups. This session is geared to faculty participants.

The session will be held virtually on January 18th from 12-1pm. Please click here register and add the event to your google calendar if you would like to attend.

Before attending the session, please view the NCFDD semester planning webinar and create a first draft of your semester plan to bring to the session. I have pasted 2 options for viewing the NCFDD webinar below. You will not be asked to share your plan, but it will form the foundation for reflection and conversation. You will leave the session with a revised semester plan, the skills necessary for translating that plan into a week by week schedule, and an understanding of ways to hold yourself accountable.

NCFDD webinar viewing options:

Live webinar on January 13th, 2-3:45pm. Registration required.


Recorded version available on demand

(click here to create an NCFDD login if you do not already have one)

Opening Higher Education

A talk with Dr. Rajiv Jhangiani
Tuesday, February 8th, 2022

4:15 – 5:30pm

Zoom.  Please register here.

Dr. Rajiv Jhangiani is the Associate Vice President, Teaching and Learning at Kwantlen Polytechnic University in British Columbia. The architect of Canada’s first zero textbook cost degree programs, Rajiv’s scholarship focuses on open educational practices, student-centered pedagogies, and ethical approaches to educational technology.  Sponsored by HHMI Inclusive Excellence