Dear Alumni, Parents, and Friends of Colorado College,

It was my junior year in college and summer was rapidly approaching. Like many college students, I was eager for a break, but also wanted to have a meaningful summer experience. After considering my options, I spent the summer teaching math at a boarding school. It was transformative. I learned that I belonged in a classroom, and that revelation inspired my journey to becoming a teacher and a scholar. Today, still an educator, I want each of our students to have such transformative experiences.

Jill TiefenthalerThe academic year remains the core of our mission, but part of our strategic plan is to create more and varied opportunities for students in the summer. Summer is a great time for experimentation, practice, and adventure. Not surprisingly, our students and faculty have responded — creating and taking advantage of new opportunities. In this issue of the Bulletin, we highlight some of the exciting opportunities CC offered during this past summer.

One of our new summer initiatives is offering intensive, hands-on learning through thematically linked blocks (Blocks A & B) that integrate academic and practical experiences. Last summer, we launched three new programs. One example, the Colorado Documentary Institute, provided students with the opportunity to develop film production, interview, and research skills while creating their own documentaries.

Summer also provides invaluable opportunities for faculty-student collaboration. Approximately 100 students worked with faculty on campus last summer and, thanks to an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation grant, the students also participated in research workshops and showcased their work at CC’s inaugural Summer Undergraduate Collaborative Research Symposium. The scope of research ranged from a project by Leigh Nicholl ’15 and Professor David Brown on “Stochastic Modeling of Quorum Sensing in Gram-Negative Bacteria” to
Alex Suber ’15 and Professor Scott Krzych’s study of “Psychoanalysis and the Cinema.”

The flexibility of the Summer Session also allows faculty to offer courses in inspiring locations around the world. Over the past summer, students joined faculty in 15 countries including Professor Heidi Lewis’ course in Germany, titled Invisible Women: Afro-German Women and Feminisms, and Professor Sanjaya Thakur and Riley Scholar Richard Buxton’s course in Italy, titled Rome, Naples, Sicily: Crossroads of the Ancient Mediterranean.

CC alumni, parents, faculty, and the Career Center helped many students find — and fund — summer internships. With support from the college, students could afford to take otherwise “unpaid” internships. Andrew DesLauriers ’16 worked as a research project manager for the MindBody Medicine Clinic at the University of Vermont College of Medicine. Theodosia Fehsenfeld ’16 interned with the Puget Sound Restoration Fund. As a Public Interest Fellowship Program Summer Fellow, Heidi Yim ’16 worked in the education program of
the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Students also used other institutional resources to pursue their intellectual adventures. For example, Joseph Eisaguirre ’15 received a Keller Family Venture Grant to study “Spatial Variation of the Golden Eagle Diet, Nest Site Productivity, and Nest Area Landscape Characteristics on the Seward Peninsula, Alaska.” Jack Rodat ’15, Niels Davis ’15, and John Nestler ’15 used a Ritt Kellogg Memorial Fund Expedition Grant to fund their adventure paddling sea kayaks along the coast of Newfoundland to a remote bay with towering granite cliffs.

The opportunities at Colorado College abound! As we implement “Building on the Block,” we will strengthen and grow opportunities for our students. Whether taking a classics course in Italy, collaborating with a faculty mentor on groundbreaking research, or teaching high school as I did, students will be transformed, getting ready to begin their own journeys.

Best regards,

Jill Tiefenthaler