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September 18, 2013

This Week's Issue: Untangling Vermont's Health Care Exchange; Union Busting Allegations at SMC

Cover-091813Happy Wednesday, people. Here are the news and politics stories you'll find in the latest edition of Seven Days:

If those links aren't your style, read these stories in print or on the Seven Days app.

Cover illustration by Michael Tonn

September 12, 2013

Morning Read: Protesters Rip Up 9/11 Memorial Flags at Middlebury College


Middlebury College students marked the 12th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks yesterday with a display of 2,977 miniature American flags in front of Mead Chapel. The memorial, organized by the school's College Republicans and College Democrats groups, has happened every 9/11 for nearly 10 years, according to the Middlebury Campus.

This year, though, things went awry.

The Campus reported that five people ripped the flags out of the ground and tossed them into trash bags because they were planted on sacred Abenaki ground.

Continue reading "Morning Read: Protesters Rip Up 9/11 Memorial Flags at Middlebury College" »

September 11, 2013

This Week's Issue: Augmented Reality, School Calendar Reform and a Booted Reporter

This week's Seven Days has something new attached to it: augmented reality! Now you can interact with the old-fashioned print edition with the help of a smartphone or tablet. All you have to do is download the Layar app and scan whenever you see the little symbol, and the page will come to life. In the screenshots below, you'll see what happens to the cover...


With Layar, dancers start to dance across the paper! Whoa! We are living in the Harry Potter universe, people.

Once you're done with that, there's lots of good news and politics content for your consideration, too.

September 04, 2013

This Week's Issue: Bike Thefts, Crowded Sidewalks and Harry Potter


This week's Art Hop issue is on newsstands now. But fear not, news junkies! We've got the usual bunch of news and politics, too. Here's what you'll find:

September 02, 2013

Gun Play Across from a Burlington Elementary School? It's Legal in Vermont.

Spring st 006Police have responded 29 times in the past year to incidents on the single block of Spring Street opposite the Integrated Arts Academy at H.O. Wheeler in Burlington's Old North End.

Principal Bobby Riley insists both the school and the neighborhood are safe, but Jeff Sherman, a resident of one of the units in the 69-85 block of Spring Street, describes conditions there as "pretty bad." The sense of danger has grown in the 12 years he's lived there, Sherman says.

In February 2011, a domestic assault spilled onto the street in front of the elementary school, whereupon a man fired a shot that didn't hurt anyone. The students were on vacation that week, but Wheeler went into lockdown to protect the staff inside.

Continue reading "Gun Play Across from a Burlington Elementary School? It's Legal in Vermont." »

August 28, 2013

This Week's Issue: Natural Gas, Intervale Angst and a Look at Lisman


After you're done with the big cover story about the future of Burlington's urban farmers, dig into this week's news and politics stories:

Get this issue now in print, at the links above or via our iOS app.

August 26, 2013

New UVM Fines Aim to Deter Marijuana and Alcohol Abuse

Dreamstime_m_28053840University of Vermont students caught on campus with drugs and alcohol this year are paying a price. With advice from a national group of schools, Vermont’s largest university is implementing new fines for students caught doing drugs, and upping the fines for those with too much booze on hand. And since UVM is a dry-halls campus, they apply even for students 21 and older.

Annie Stevens, vice provost for student affairs at UVM, says the new fines are intended to serve as a deterrent, not to make a mint for the university — though they’re likely to do both.

According to Stevens, UVM signed onto the National College Health Improvement Program two years ago. Founded in 2011 by then-president of Dartmouth College Jim Kim, the program includes 32 member schools collaborating to reduce high-risk drinking. UVM's decision to implement its new fines, says Stevens, was based on that program.

So, what are the fines? $250 for possessing a “common source” of alcohol — that’s 12 servings or more; $150 for empties found during routine Health and Safety inspections of dorm rooms; $150 for a student's first drug offense; and $250 for the second drug offense. The common source fine went up this year from $150, and all the other fines are new this year, Stevens says.

Continue reading "New UVM Fines Aim to Deter Marijuana and Alcohol Abuse" »

August 21, 2013

This Week's Issue: Fixing Shabby Burlington Apartments; New Cops Learn How Not to Be Racist

Happy Hump Day, everyone. Here's what you'll find in this week's Seven Days:

Grab this week's issue in print, online or on the iOS app.

July 25, 2013

Embattled Goddard President Announces Departure, Citing Family Challenges

Vacarr2Barbara Vacarr, the embattled president of Goddard College, announced Thursday in a joint statement with the school's board of trustees that she will step down from her post in December.

"In this challenging time of national economic and enrollment concerns for higher education, I remain focused on the issues paramount to Goddard's mission," she said. "However, I have concluded that I must also pay more attention to the personal challenges facing close family members. Therefore, I look forward to working with the board in leaving the college moving ahead. I am grateful for the opportunity to lead such a wonderful institution."

Vacarr was the subject of a February 2013 cover story in Seven Days, in which staff writer Kathryn Flagg documented the president's struggle to turn the college around. While some community members praised her efforts to retool the school, others criticized the "corporate mentality" they say she brought to the hippie haven.

In a November 2012 letter sent to Vacarr and Goddard's board of trustees, Flagg reported, 46 faculty members complained about what they saw as a "pattern of unilateral decision making" at the school. 

Continue reading "Embattled Goddard President Announces Departure, Citing Family Challenges" »

May 14, 2013

Green Mountain College Joins Growing Divestment Movement

DivestGreen Mountain College today announced that it is divesting its $3.1 million endowment from fossil fuel companies, making the Poultney liberal arts school the fifth college in the nation — and the second in Vermont, after Sterling College — to endorse a campaign playing out on more than 300 campuses across the country. 

The goal isn't necessarily to hit companies like Mobil, Exxon and Royal Dutch Shell in the pocketbook; most divestment advocates agree that even the wealthiest universities won't make much of a ding in these corporation's profits by divesting. 

“I don’t think financially we can cripple them. They’re so big and so rich,” Vermont resident and environmental activist Bill McKibben told Seven Days in December, as the divestment campaign was gaining steam. Rather, McKibben said divestment represents an “inherently moral call, saying if it’s wrong to wreck the climate, it’s wrong to profit from that wreckage.”

GMC's board of trustees voted on Friday to immediately divest from the top 200 fossil fuel companies targeted in the nationwide divestment campaign headed up by the environmental activism organization founded by McKibben, Currently 1 percent of GMC's endowment is tied up in these companies, which collectively own the vast majority of the world's coal, oil and gas reserves.

"We see this as another step in an ongoing effort to connect our investment decisions with our ideals,” said GMC president Paul Fonteyn in a statement released today. "Investing endowment funds on the basis of social, economic and environmental criteria is one of the ways Green Mountain College expresses its values."

Continue reading "Green Mountain College Joins Growing Divestment Movement" »

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