November 13, 2022

First, announcements:

Krista Aronson from the Dean of the Faculty’s Office sent a gentle reminder that Short Term Innovative Pedagogy (STIP) course proposals are due on or before November 21st. STIP courses provide faculty with the time and support to explore the literature on teaching and learning as well as available models for pedagogical innovation within their fields and integrate that exploration with a specific course design or redesign project. Up to 5 STIP courses will be supported during short term ‘23.

This program seeks to support curricular renewal through the transformation of our curriculum and pedagogical approaches. Participating faculty will be those interested in implementing this work at the level of a course, but also interested in sharing insights from their work as a contribution to curricular renewal and innovations in teaching and learning at the institutional level.  For more detailed information about the program and the proposal process, please visit this page

Christine Schwartz from Dining Services wrote to announce that the Mays Center (aka Ben Den) will be closed over the November break (11/21-11/25). During this time Commons will be offering meal options (except for dinner on 11/23 through dinner on 11/25) which faculty and staff may access at the special faculty/staff rate. If you have questions please visit the DCCE website, or feel free to reach out to me directly.

The Bates Athletics office wrote with news and information including that Underhill Ice Rink is now open! The Bates Community is invited to Open Skate and Open Stick and Puck times which can be found on their website and attached to this email. We have weekday times and a newly added Sunday afternoon session! Participants will need to bring their own skates and equipment. 

We also offer a variety of recreation and fitness activities for the campus community and invite you to participate! Aside from the fitness center, cardio room, indoor track, and open swimming times, you have free access to the following activities and programs:

  • B-Well Fitness Classes: You can find the B-Well group fitness calendar here. NEW CLASSES RECENTLY ADDED!
  • Open Recreation Activities such as tennis, pickleball, badminton, basketball, volleyball, swimming, skating, and more. Our current recreation schedules for each facility are attached and can be found on the website. We have a variety of sports equipment available for check-out at each Welcome Desk so you don’t need to bring your own. Grab a colleague or friend and try out some pickleball in Gray Cage!
  • The Masters Swim Group meets every Friday from 12 pm-1 pm in the pool. We would love to invite all faculty and staff (from any ability, beginners to competitive) to come join Associate Head Coach Vanessa Williamson for lap swimming and instruction! 

The Athletic facilities are open to current Bates College students, faculty, staff, and affiliates (i.e. dependents of Bates employees). A valid Bates ID must be scanned upon entry. Students and Bates employees are welcome to bring (1) guest per person per visit to the facilities, including the ice rink. The sponsoring student or employee must check in with the guest at the Merrill Gym Welcome Desk upon arrival for each visit. More information on our access, guest, and facility guidelines and procedures are available on the Athletics website

We continue to update the Athletics website with fitness and recreation resources, schedules, and information. We are also planning to host structured recreation activities, competitions, and events for employees to gather with colleagues for some active fun and exercise. Stay tuned for more!

Mike Hanrahan from Information and Library Services informed us that ILS has planned a series of workshops to showcase the virtual reality and fabrication resources available in the VizLab.  To register for any of the sessions, please use our online Registration Form.

VizLab I: 3D Printers
Tues, Nov 29th, 12:00-12:45 in Coram 103
This session will demonstrate the VizLab’s 3D printers (including how to locate and send models to print, resources for modeling, and some of the many materials that can be used in 3D fabrication).

VizLab II: Laser Cutter and Cricut
Fri, Dec 2nd, 12:00-12:45  in Coram 103
The VizLab recently acquired a Glowforge Laser Cutter along with a small CNC device called a Cricut. This session will demonstrate some curricular uses of these cutting tools.

VizLab III: VR
Tues, Dec 13th, 12:00 – 1:00 in Coram 102
During this session, we’ll set up several VR headsets in the XR space in the VizLab to enable the experience of VR.  We’ll have several headsets available to try, including the Vive Pro, Vive Focus 3, Oculus Rift S, Oculus/Meta Quest 2, and the latest Meta Quest Pro.

VizLab IV: Generative AI
Fri, Dec 16th, 12:00 – 1:00 in Coram 102
The VizLab now has Generative AI resources, including DALLE-2 and Midjourney, which use machine learning algorithms to create images autonomously (see the Colorado State Fair for a recent example). We’ll walk through the abilities of each of these programs, as well as tips for prompt engineering.

The Human Resources Benefits Team sent a message with some information about changes to our 2023 benefits renewal.

Important Reminders:

  • This is your once-a-year opportunity to explore all of your benefit options and make changes to your election, you will not be able to make changes to your 2023 benefits unless you experience a qualifying life event.
  • If you are currently participating in a Reimbursement Account (Healthcare, Limited Purpose, or Dependent Care) you MUST re-enroll for this benefit. Your election will not carry over into 2023 if you do not actively re-elect it.
  • Need help deciding what benefits are right for you? Check out these resources: 
    • ALEX – Your Virtual Benefits Counselor
      • Make benefit elections based on your family’s medical, dental, and vision needs
      • View a breakdown of why a certain plan might be the best fit for your family 
      • Connect with ALEX 
    • NFP Benefits Support Team
      • Can answer general benefits and enrollment questions 
      • Dedicated support team well-versed in Bates’ benefits plans 
      • An extension of the Bates Benefit team


  • Medical Plans 
    • Deductible Increases for the HDHP with HSA Plan
      • 2023 Individual Deductible is $3,000
      • 2023 Family Deductible is $6,000
    • Prudent RX Speciality Medication Program added to ACO and PPO plans
      • Through the Prudent RX program, you can receive select specialty medications at no cost. If you are currently taking a specialty medication that falls under the Prudent RX program you will receive direct communication from Prudent RX.
    • A Travel and Lodging Reimbursement Benefit has been added to all three medical plans
  • Health Savings Account (HSA) Contribution Limits 
    • Limits increased to $3,850 for single coverage and $7,750 for family coverage (age 55 catch-up contribution remains at $1,000)
  • Healthcare Reimbursement Account (HCRA) Contribution Limit 
    • Limit increased to $3,050 for 2023
      • Note: new elections must be made each year
  • Employee Contributions 
    • Employee contributions have increased for 2023, view the new rates here.

Please visit the 2023 Annual Enrollment website for additional resources and tools.  If you have questions or concerns, reach out to the benefits team directly at

Edili Lopez from the Dean of the Faculty’s Office wrote to inform us about the upcoming deadline for the Bates Student Research Fund and the STEM Conference Fund. Please share this information with your students. See grant program information below. 


Deadline December 1 by 11:59 PM

Supports student research associated with courses and senior work in all disciplines, though most funding goes to seniors (because they ask for it!). Grants up to $300 (sometimes more for very expensive projects) support research supplies, domestic research travel, subject reimbursements, datasets, etc. 


Deadline December 1 by 11:59 PM

Supports students in all classes presenting their STEM research (defined broadly as natural sciences, mathematics, digital and computational science, neuroscience, environmental science, biomedical fields, and science education) at regional and national scholarly meetings. Grants cover registration, travel, housing, and meals for student presenters. Grants typically range from $300-$1500.

Both of these grant programs include a brief faculty endorsement. 

Jessica Fournier from Human Resources would like to remind us about the Faculty/Staff Chili Cook-off in Commons on Monday, November 21st from 10:30 a.m. until 2:00 p.m.  This event will be open to faculty and staff at no cost and Commons will be taking advantage of this community culinary moment to ” Free the Fridge”.

Interested in entering a chili into the contest? Please CLICK HERE to sign up, or scan the QR code on the attached poster. Before signing up, here is an overview of the rules:

  • Those interested in participating must sign up by Monday, November 14th by Noon. Space is limited so sign up early!
  • Participants will be expected to make 2-3 gallons of chili. To assist with the cost, contestants will be reimbursed up to $60.00 – receipts will be required.
  • Before the event, participants will be provided with a disposable pan in which their entry must be placed; no crock pots will be used to serve chili. 
  • Participants must send a list of ingredients used to Michelle Lewis at by Friday, November 18th.
  • On the day of the event, participants will be required to drop off their entry in the pan provided between 8:00a and 9:00a in Commons room 117. Dining will ensure that all entries are properly heated, labeled, and presented for tasting.  
  • Judging for the contest will take place between 10:00 – 10:30 a.m. 
  • Winning categories are: Best Chili, People’s Choice, and Most Creative chili

President Spencer sent a message regarding the Bates Community Giving Campaign.  Each year at this time, the members of the Bates community join together to support our friends and neighbors through the Bates Community Giving Campaign. I write to encourage you to take part in this initiative again—or perhaps for the first time—in 2022.

The Bates Community Giving Campaign is a meaningful way to contribute to three organizations making a real difference in Lewiston and throughout Maine: United Way of Androscoggin County, MaineShare, and Community Health Charities of Maine.

Every gift matters. Our goal for the 2022–23 Bates Community Giving Campaign is $40,000 and 225 donors between now and December 2. You can make your gift by signing in to the Garnet Gateway. When you give, you’ll become eligible for a series of weekly prize drawings. Look for special events throughout the giving period as well.

If you have any questions about making a gift or about the Bates Community Giving Campaign in general, please send an email to

The members of the Vice President for Equity and Inclusion search committee wrote to remind us of the remaining candidates who are currently scheduled to visit campus this coming week. The search committee sincerely hopes that you will be able to attend the following open meetings. This is your opportunity to hear from and ask questions of each candidate.

Candidate 2 will present to faculty and staff on Monday, November 14, at 12:00 pm in Commons 221/222. (For this session, feel free to bring your lunch to 221/222. We will start promptly at 12 pm.)

Candidate 3 will present to faculty and staff on Tuesday, November 15, at 4:15 pm in Commons 221/222. Refreshments will be available.

We very much hope that most of you will be able to attend the on-campus sessions in person, but we will also make Zoom participation available for all three sessions.  We ask that those of you who plan to attend these events (either in person or via Zoom) register in advance by clicking here.  Please register no later than 5:00 pm on the day before each session.  By registering, you will gain access to the candidates’ relevant materials, which we will ask that you keep confidential. We will also use your registration to assist us in soliciting feedback after the presentations.

The Bates Football team in partnership with the Athletics Department sent a message informing us that they are collecting toys on behalf of The Root Cellar.  Toys will be accepted in Commons until December 1 and during all home basketball games.

Carson Dockum wrote to share some important information from the Office of Accessible Education and Student Support.  

Staffing Updates
We are excited to share that Jess Berry has joined us at Bates as the Assistant Dean for Accessible Education and Student Support. 

Coming to Bates with more than 20 years in education, 16 of those years in the University of Maine System, Jess brings expertise and passion for student success. Jess finds enjoyment in biking, hiking, fly fishing, foraging for mushrooms, and basically anything that connects to the outdoors.

Seeing all Student Accommodation Info in One Place with AIM

Faculty members receive individual emails whenever a student is approved for accommodation. Because students have a right to apply for accommodations at any time and because it is their responsibility to register their accommodations for their individual courses, these emails are not all sent on a fixed date. To make it easier to see a current snapshot of the full set of accommodations for your courses, faculty can use an online platform called Accessible Information Management (AIM). If you have a student who is approved for accommodations in your course(s), you are able to login to AIM using your Bates network credentials and view your Faculty Profile, which will include:

∙ A list of students who have registered accommodations in your course(s)

∙ Notification letters, with a student’s approved accommodation(s)

∙ List of exams that have been scheduled by students 

Utilizing AIM as a faculty member is optional, however, we hope this tool may be helpful, particularly to those who have larger classes and find it challenging to keep track of individual email notifications. Additional information and instructions can be found on our website

Safeguarding Student Privacy

Instructors and some support staff have a legitimate need to know about their students’ accommodations while also having a responsibility to keep that information confidential. Please remember that all disability-related information is protected by FERPA and should be protected as such.

Final Exams

Consistent with past years, our office will be administering final exams at the following start times: 8:00 am, 10:30 am, 12:15 pm (only for those who receive 100% extra time), and 1:15pm.

Due to the large volume of exams each day, we ask that you please arrange for copies of your exam to be dropped off at the Office of Accessible Education located at Ladd Library G35 no later than twenty-four hours prior to your scheduled exam start times. If you are unable to provide us with a copy of your exam within this timeframe please let us know in advance and we will be happy to work with you. 

When you drop off your exam, please complete an Exam Cover Form making sure to note any special instructions or materials allowed. This helps us to ensure the integrity of your exam and allow only approved materials into the exam room. We will have plenty of copies available in our office and are happy to assist in noting relevant information. 

If your final exam requires the use of technology for resources such as SPSS, STATA, audio components, video components, or the use of other forms of multimedia, we are happy to work with you. As we have a finite number of laptops available, please contact us no later than Monday, December 5th so we can work together to develop a plan for successful implementation and ensure that we have the required materials.

Faculty Resource Page

For more information, please review the faculty resources page on our website.  This includes information about accessible course material, FAQs regarding accommodations, FAQs regarding exams, tips for accessibility, and more.

Next, upcoming events.

EACS/GEO Lunch:  Short Term Classes and Summer Opportunities

Monday, November 14th

Noon – 12:35 pm: Presentation in Carnegie 204

12:40 – 1:00 pm: Pizza in Carnegie 219

Come learn about exciting opportunities in Earth and Climate Sciences!  *All are welcome!*

Charity and Globalization in Mexico during the Eighteenth Century

Monday, November 14

4:30 PM – Pettengill G52

Lecture to be given by Karen Melvin, Thomas Hedley Reynolds Professor of History

Upcoming CITL Events:

LAVA Lunch Bunch 

(LAVA = Lecturers, Assistants in Instruction, Visiting Professors, and Applied Faculty)

Tuesday, November 15th, 12-1 pm, Commons 211

Tuesday, November 29th, 12-1 pm, Commons 211

Guilt-Free Book Club: Inclusive Teaching Ch 1 and 2 discussion

Tuesday, Nov 15th, 8-9 am OR 4:15-5:15 pm, Dana 216

On the Menu: Inclusive Group Work

Wednesday, November 30th, 12-1 pm, Commons 221

Healthy Substance Use Group
every Thursday – 11:30-12:30
Commons 211

Looking for a supportive space to talk about your relationship with substances and have regular thoughtful check-ins?  Professor Stephanie Kelley-Romano (SKR), Bates Health Services, and the Multifaith Chaplaincy are holding a Healthy Substance Use Group once a week.  Faculty, staff, and students are all welcome. Drop in for any amount of time you can.  Whether you are in recovery or simply looking to redefine your relationship with substances, feel very welcome to come and join this warm community as you process! 

Beer Science Night at Baxter
Wednesday, November 16
5:30-6:30 pm or 7:00-8:00 pm. 

Grace Wenger ’24 will present the research that she conducted alongside Merritt Waldron (Quality Director at Baxter Brewing) and our own Dr. Lori Banks (Assistant Professor of Biology) this past summer. You will learn how iso-alpha acids (IBUs) are measured, its implications on beer flavor, and updates on how this information is being used!  There is an optional purchase of a $10 ticket for a guided flight tasting upon arrival. For more information and to register (required), click here

Purposeful Work

2022 Harvest Meal and Trashion Show
Wednesday, November 16
4:30 pm-8:30 pm
Commons and the Gray Cage
The event will be open to faculty, staff, and their immediate families. Harvest Meal Tickets will be available for purchase in the Mays Center Monday through Friday through the 16th from 10:30 a.m.-2:30 pm. Adult tickets are $15.00, children from 6 to 12 are $8.00, and children under 6 are free. If you are planning on attending, please buy your tickets in advance as they will not be available at the door.

“Innocent Blood”: The Milton Circle’s Appropriation of Indigenous People’s Legal Innocence
Wednesday, November 16 – 7:00 pm 

Pettengill G52 & Via Zoom at

Presented by José Juan Villagrana, Assistant Professor of English and Comparative Literature

San José State University.  Professor Villagrana is a Public Voices Fellow with the Op-Ed Project and the author of Racial Apocalypse: The Cultivation of Supremacy in the Early Modern World.  Sponsored by the Program in Classical and Medieval Studies.