Not All Heroes Wear Capes Series – Round 2
College News Highlights asked you to nominate someone who has made an impact on campus during the pandemic. And you delivered. We bring you this week’s nominees.
Whether they work in grounds, housekeeping, maintenance services, or are part of the facilities office staff, this group of employees are “always on.” Running campus operations during a pandemic brought brand new challenges, and facilities staff worked to bring solutions to each of them. Learning how to most effectively clean every square inch of campus – from classrooms to residential hall rooms to the testing sites – became one of the group’s most important tasks over the last year, and their work has been integral to keeping all members of the campus community safe.
Executive Assistant to the Vice President for Finance and CFO
Jill Rathbun is always one of the first to raise her hand when the College needs help. And that has remained true during the pandemic. In her day job, she is the executive assistant to the vice president for finance and CFO. She is also often at the center of event planning for the annual faculty/staff holiday party and other campus celebrations. But this semester, she has spent most of her time at the testing sites serving in several roles. She arrives “ready, willing, and able to fill any need and does it with a wonderful sense of humor.”
Assistant Dean of Students
When people need help keeping track of moving parts or thinking through logistics, Terri Travaglini’s name rises to the top of the suggestions. She is the mastermind behind the seamlessness of move-in day each year, and she has been known to rally when situations just need to be figured out. Last summer, she co-chaired the Campus Operations Group of the Campus Reopening Task Force, taking a deep dive into each space on campus to figure out how we could safely operate within the social distancing parameters. She was also often seen on Zoom for the Student/Family Campus Conversations. This spring, she developed and refined a system of tracking and monitoring students who are in isolation and quarantine improving communication, support, and response to students.
Associate Professor of Biology; Spring COVID-19 Advisory Team Member
Dr. Theresa Westbay keeps science at the forefront of all she does on campus – in the classroom, as part of the Campus Reopening Task Force, and as a member of the Spring COVID-19 Advisory Team. When she has not been teaching, she has been in the advisory team daily meetings sharing her expertise as the group talked about policies and recommendations and looked at campus metrics. Last fall, she served as the spokesperson for policy education in College videos about new classroom cleaning protocols and safe and effective mask-wearing. Her approach and thoughtfulness in guiding the advisory team “with scientific facts balanced with emotional awareness of the context” has been credited as educational and comforting. Finally, her knowledge of the sciences of vaccines has been invaluable.
Executive Assistant to the Vice President of Student Affairs
Chenno Bowens is the friendly face one first sees when they visit the Division of Student Affairs. Her positive demeanor and welcoming smile are always working in tandem, and she is a helpful resource for the student affairs staff, as well as students and families. This past year, she has often answered questions for students and families who have been navigating COVID policies. But this spring, she has served the testing sites almost daily in addition to fulfilling her full-time role as assistant to the vice president of student affairs. In addition, she helped the Health and Wellness Center triage phone calls and inquiries early in the semester. Her “warm smile and gentle heart” have been true assets to campus this semester.
Career and Academic Planning Advisor
Jen Salmon brings a positive disposition to her daily work, and didn’t let a pandemic slow her down. She truly takes a student-first approach, and students say she is “always there - whether it be just as someone to talk to or for help with figuring out which classes to take.” She epitomizes “other duties as assigned.” Her thoughtfulness and helpfulness rise to the top when it comes to working with students; qualities that have been integral in advising students through the pandemic.
Assistant to the Dean of Nursing
Long-time staff member of the Wegmans School of Nursing Carolyn Martin is credited with going above and beyond for a remote colleague throughout the pandemic. According to her colleague, Martin has done all she can to ensure that both she and her students had what they needed to make teaching and learning seamless. She’s done everything from mailing materials to students to be sure they had what they needed for class to checking in with individuals to see how else she could help. She has been called “the glue” of the School and its programs.