Middlebury

 

SuperBlocks

Updated for 2014-2015 Housing Process

Superblocks are one-year opportunities for groups of students to live together to support a common interest. The residential spaces offered for Superblock purposes may vary from year to year.  Spaces are awarded based on the strength of the applications balanced against the overall housing needs of the College.  In past years Superblocks have been awarded at Palmer, Homestead, Jewett, Meeker, Munford, and the Mods.  

The Superblock program is intended to empower groups of Junior and Senior students with a shared goal, pastime or interest (e.g. dance, theatre, outdoor activities, cooking), to live together, support each other's growth and skills in that area of interest, and in turn enrich and broaden the College community through programming.  Sophomore students are not eligible to live in Superblock locations until the Spring Term.

Funding for activities is provided through the Office of the Dean of Students.

Since the introduction of the first two Superblocks in 2008-2009 the program has expanded and in its sixth year is offering the community a wide variety of alternative programming from ten groups.  For questions about a group's programming or if there is space on the residential roster see the current list of blocks below.

APPLYING 2014-15
The application process for 2014-15 Superblocks is now closed.

 

SuperBlock Regulations

Superblocks will be awarded before the on-line Room Draw processes in April through an application process. Interested groups are required to complete an application and submit a preliminary roster of residence in advance. Additionally, each group will need to make presentation to the selection committee, offering additional information and answering questions about their proposal. Submissions and presentations will be evaluated by a committee of staff and students.

Groups are awarded Superblock status for one academic year. The Superblock is expected to utilize the residential facilities to offer programming and social activities on a regular basis for the members of the block as well as the general student body. Each Superblock will receive a budget. Superblocks work closely with the CRAs and groups are expected to regularly update Residential Life about planned programs and events. A Superblock's programming should be within the scope of its residential capacity and approved budget.

Funding for activities is provided through the Office of the Dean of Students.  Programs should be appropriate for the size of the awarded residential space and the budget.  Groups which do not fulfill their programming obligations may be rehoused.

Superblocks are expected to be positive additions to the Middlebury College community. Actions on the part of houses in terms of violations of policy, dorm damage, excessive messiness, or failing to complete the mission of the house may result in a loss of housing for the group.

All students who are awarded and accept a Superblock will be ineligible to participate in subsequent Fall Term housing processes. Please note that any students waiting for study abroad approval, Social House members or Residence Life candidates may only be listed on a roster as a back-up on your roster; the preliminary student listed on the roster has obligated themselves to fill the bed should the back-up not be available and can also not participate in any future Fall Term housing processes. Any student who chooses to withdraw from the block after an offer has been accepted will be housed by the Residential Systems Coordinator during the Summer Draw process and may be asked to work with the Superblock group to identify someone to fill their space in the block.

Members of a Superblock are expected to fill any beds which open up during the academic year by students who leave the block. If the members are unable to do so the Residential Systems Coordinator will fill the space(s) which may include reassigning beds, or re-house the remaining residents. All beds must be filled for all terms: Fall, Winter and Spring.

2013-14 SuperBlocks

Around the World/Norgay (7pp)

The Around the World Superblock aims to provide a forum for Middlebury students to share experiences from countries around the world. We facilitate planning for study abroad, assist students reintegrate back from studying abroad, share cultural traditions from our own diverse backgrounds, and offer a space for discussion about past and future travels. All members of the superblock share an interest in cultures from around the world, whether this means coming from a foreign country, learning a language at Middlebury, studying overseas, travelling during the summer, or merely getting to know students from different backgrounds.

Contact: Rebecca Wong (rwong@middlebury.edu)

Baking/Earhart (7pp)

The Baking Mod is back this year! We are so excited to pick up right where we left off last year and to add some new and exciting aspects to our mod's theme. Some of our objectives this year are 1. Expand our cultural baking horizons 2. Encourage and inspire the creative bakers of Middlebury College 3. Create a safe, relaxing environment where people can come hang out to escape the pressures of school and finally 4. Explore new types of healthy baking. Some of our ideas for events this year will be Cake Boss (a cake decorating challenge where we will bring in an expert to show us how to decorate a cake like the professionals), International Baking Extravaganza (a potluck dinner in which anyone who would like to can bring any type of dish that is a home recipe and of course the baking mod is always open if space is needed to cook), and Yoga and Baking (while the cookies are in the oven we'll stretch ourselves out so we are nice and relaxed when the baked goods are done)! Recently after going apple picking we thought it might be fun to get a group of people together to go apple picking and then bring them home to make apple pies or apple crisp! If you are interested in any of these events or if you have any ideas for other events please contact Julia Favorito. Get excited for another year of delicious fun! 

The Baking Mod 2.0

Contact: Julia Favorito (jfavorito@middlebury.edu)

Design House/Jewett (12pp)

The mission of the Design House is to create a community for students who are passionate about design, aesthetics, and visual thinking, and to open up everything such a community has to offer to the Middlebury campus as a whole. We intend to create a space that fosters the visually-minded spirit and inspires the house members as well as the greater college community to be better, more thoughtful designers in all aspects of their lives. Our house serves as a creative outlet for house-members and an informative and inspirational outlet who non house-members who will frequently be visiting. The creative process is not one that keeps normal business hours; inspiration is just as likely to come in the shower as at the desk, before breakfast as falling asleep. The communal setting of the house will allow us to fully dedicate ourselves to our passions as designers, to express ourselves and to inspire others, and to create not only a small community within a house, but a much vaster community within Middlebury college, that cares about and understands design in the fullest way possible.

Contact: Sally Caruso scaruso@middlebury.edu

Exploration & Adventure/Meeker (18pp)

Middlebury constantly challenges us to reach outside our comfort zones. But do students actually dare to adventure every day? The mission of the Exploration & Adventure SuperBlock is to foster a community that celebrates and encourages comfort zone expansion. We believe in the fundamental importance of providing a safe space for Meeker residents, students of Middlebury College, and members of the surrounding community to journey into uncharted territory: from personal spiritual explorations to literal participation in novel activities. Our purpose also encompasses the sharing of our various experiences through regularly listening to others and blog documentation or go/meek.

Contact: Sarah Crepps (screpps@middlebury.edu)

Intentional Living/Munford (31pp)

We at Munford House strive to ...
• live intentionally through sustained attention to the goals and values which nourish us as individuals and as a community. Those include ...

  • devotion to those practices which draw us out of ourselves and into communion with the world and those around us (openness, empathy, listening, awareness, mindfulness, noticing, compassion)
  • celebrating our life as a community by honoring each other as unique individuals while reminding each other of our common bonds in the work we share (uniting individuality, personal passions & beliefs, purpose, community strength etc...)
  • welcoming the familiar and the unfamiliar as we seek to serve those in the broader campus community who are interested in the kind of life we strive to lead here (inclusivity, openness to the other, community engagement, reaching out, series events)
  • empathizing with those around us, living with integrity, and loving shamelessly
  • living with mindfulness and compassion, with the intention of fostering well-being, growth, and learning both personally and among all the communities to which we belong: our house, college, and town, the larger international community, and the natural world.

• We believe that by coming together to live out this mission we will be enabling ourselves and others to lead lives of engagement and purpose.

Goals for the house :
• Have house events that may include but are not limited to ...

  • breakfasts & morning coffee
  • community meal-sharing (regular, international, study abroad, vegan potlucks, tea parties)
  • house partners
  • secret santa
  • game/movie nights
  • adventures (hikes, runs, bike rides, bonfires, apple-picking etc...)
  • time for reflection (meditation, yoga, prayer, contemplative practices)

• Have community events that include but are not limited to ...

  • custodial breakfast
  • musical events (bands & dance parties)
  • Hosting or co-hosting a community supper
  • Meeker - Munford events (viva la Munker)
  • Intentional Living speaker series
  • Religious discussion
  • Freshman mentorship program

Contact: Alison Lewis (atlewis@middlebury.edu)

Local Environmental Stewardship/Cousteau (7pp)

The Local Environmental Stewardship SuperBlock of Cousteau Mod is all about encouraging a connection to the outdoors.  We aim not only to promote responsibility for the well-being of our local spaces, but also to inspire students to spend more time out and about.  The wilds of Vermont have enriched us as a group, and our goal is to spread that back to the community in whatever way we can.

A Spring Housing slot may become available as the semester goes on - contact William Melhado [wmelhado@middlebury.edu] if you are interested in filling this opening this coming spring.

Local Living/Ride (7pp)

The Local Living Mod aims to serve as a connection between Middlebury College and the town of Middlebury. Our goal is to promote appreciation for all that Middlebury and the surrounding picturesque Vermont towns have to offer. Through our events--Shelburne Harvest Festival, Maple Candy making, apple picking etc.--we hope to create new friendships and bonds that transcend the college community and encourage students to appreciate the larger environment. Our door is always open, and all are welcome, so please stop by and introduce yourself. We always have fresh fruit and a hot cup of tea. If you are interested in learning more about our mod and its mission/goals, please contact Caroline Nutt atcnutt@middlebury.edu

Superplay/Homestead (15pp)

Info: SuperPlay is a group of students that love to play in and outside and love to play music. Our mission is to 1) cultivate and enjoy outdoor activity and music within the house, 2) spread it throughout the college community, and 3) to promote outdoor activity among Addison County youth.

Contact: James Clifford (jclifford@middlebury.edu)

The Collective Mind: Diversity of Thought & Learning Outside the Classroom/Palmer (30pp)

The Collective Mind SuperBlock has two primary goals that we wish to accomplish. The first is to bring great thought-provoking programming to the Middlebury community at large. We wish to do this by hosting interesting events that allow students from different backgrounds to contribute to the conversation. Our second goal is to fulfill the social needs of the students, both through social programming, such as dinners and mixers, and also through safe and fun parties.

Contact:  Blake Shapskinsky (bshapskinsky@middlebury.edu)

Thoughts for Food/Peary (7pp)

At Middlebury, especially with our three dining halls and constant access to free food, a disconnect has been building between students and the source of their food. Our mod's goal is to try and revitalize a sense of ownership of our food by hunting, fishing and gathering it ourselves. Throughout the year we will be hosting dinners and various outings that have the intention of bringing Middlebury students closer to their food. 

Contact: Oliver Sutro (osutro@middlebury.edu)

2014-15 SuperBlock Awards

Baking Mod/Earhart (7pp)

The 2014-2015 Baking Mod is carrying on a tradition of having a mod that will create a casual atmosphere that stimulates conversation and group interactions through baking. We are looking to bring the family atmosphere into our mod through food. We will be holding several events throughout the year, including a holiday cookie-decorating event and a Vermont-themed breakfast. We are also looking forward to having Sundae Sundays throughout the spring. We are hoping our mod will be a comfortable place to come unwind through baking and relaxing in good company.

Contact: Carly Schaeder ’16, (cschaeder@middlebruy.edu)

 

Beyond the Bubble: Uncovering Vermont/Norgay (7pp)     

Through our mod's programming, we would like to encourage Middlebury students to truly engage in and experience the broader community in which they live for four years. We have found that it is easy to become complacent in the Middlebury College "Bubble," and in response we believe it is crucial that students go beyond the Bubble and uncover real Vermont through service and interaction. 

There are many facets to life here in Addison County: there is stunning natural beauty and affluence, but there is also rural poverty and hunger. We believe our mod could provide an intimate space to host conversations with community members who could expose students to these many different aspects. These dialogues would allow us to become more aware members of this community, and would build greater understanding between the College and the town. 

Examples of possible programming include:

  • Roundtable discussion about food insecurity and homelessness in Vermont with Dottie Neuberger, organizer of weekly Community Supper
  • Attendance at a Community Supper on Friday night to learn about hunger in Middlebury first hand
  • Roundtable discussion about tourism in Vermont with Gayle and Paul Brown, owners of the Cold Hollow Cider Mill
  • Field trip to the Cold Hollow Cider Mill to see it in operation
  • Roundtable discussion about agriculture in Vermont with Peter James, owner of Monument Farms Dairy
  • Excursion to Monument Farms to experience the business in action

Contact: Catherine Costley, (ccostley@middlebury.edu)

 

Bursting the Bubble: Community Building/Palmer (30pp)  

The aim of Palmer House this year is to act as a location where the worlds of the College community and townsfolk can merge. We hope to do this through monthly community-oriented programming that will attract people with a wide range of interests from both sides of the 'bubble'. The house also desires to serve as a springboard for students who want to get more involved on and off campus. In addition to this, Palmer House wants to create a welcome space in the Middlebury social scene that emphasizes socializing, building healthy relationships and peer responsibility. Feel free to come over and hang out with us!

Contact:  Durga Jayaraman, (djayaraman@middlebury.edu)

 

Creative Expression/Meeker (18pp)

In recognition of the immense creativity and artistic talent of the Middlebury Student body, our mission is to provide a supportive space that enables student artists to create, collaborate, and receive feedback on their art. Our interests and talents encompass all forms of expression, from theater, to creative writing, to visual art, to music, and more. As close proximity encourages close collaboration, we provide artists a place to congregate in a relaxed setting. The goal is for Meeker House to become a hub for student art on campus. We use the common spaces of our house to showcase visual art, and host regular open performance nights with live music, student DJ’s, spoken word and theater performances, and anything else you can think of. We also run creative writing workshops. For more info or to sign up to showcase your work, visit go/meeker, or contact Adam.

Contact: Adam Kelley, (akelley@middlebury.edu)

 

Documentary and Discussion/Cousteau (7pp)

The purpose of documentary and discussion mod is to create a space where students can be exposed to new ideas and perspectives through the medium of documentary film, and then have the chance to discuss the film with other members of the Middlebury community. Possible documentary genres include adventure and exploration, environmentalism, biology, technology, politics, food, and more. Using the mod as a space to screen films about these topics and discuss them, we can broaden the perspectives of our community members.

Contact Hayden Shea (hshea@middlebury.edu) if you have questions about our mod and/or our programming.

 

Inside Out/Homestead (15pp)

Look around. We are some of the most talented young people out there, yet we often feel so inadequate—in the classroom, at a party, or on the field. The Inside Out superblock aims to promote inner confidence in the various emotional, physical, and academic aspects of our experience at Middlebury. We hope to encourage Middlebury students to live active and balanced lives and that our house can become an outlet for anybody in the community to de-stress and become more confident in who they are and all that they do. We hope to promote belongingness, healthy body image, a sense of security, and academic confidence in both our house members and the college community.  Let’s expand upon our Middlebury experience and take advantage of the talent that surrounds us! 

Contact: Katherine Kucharczyk (kkucharczyk@middlebury.edu)

 

Local Living/Ride (7pp)

The Local Living Mod aims to serve as a connection between Middlebury College and the town of Middlebury. The goal of our mod is to serve as a bridge between the Middlebury College community and local events, resources, and opportunities as well as support local farms and small businesses. Through our events—pumpkin picking, Sun to Cheese Tour at Shelburne Farms, hiking snake mountain, etc. – we hope to attract a wide variety of people at Middlebury to create new friendships and bonds especially across different grades. Our door will always be open and we encourage people to stop by, hang out, and even suggest other activities they’d like to have happen during the year.

Contact:  Anne Wymard (awymard@middlebury.edu)

 

The Real Vermont: a look at the connection between Vermont identity and food/Peary (7pp)

Food is a medium through which we can relate Middlebury students to the people of Vermont.  Our mod will attempt to expose students to the far-reaching Vermont--the Vermont that lies outside of Middlebury.  Food is a huge part of the Vermont industry, and we are hoping to connect students to the people who live and work in this industry.  Our intention is to attend festivals around the state that make Vermont unique.  After attending each festival, we will hold an event at which members of the college community can enjoy that which Vermont has to offer as well as learn about the importance of Vermont foods as an industry.  Much of what we enjoy in the dining halls, such as Cabot butter and apple cider, are known to be Vermont staples, but we want to educate people about the history of the foods we eat, the people who make them, and why they are truly unique to the Vermont style of living.  

Contact: Stevie Durocher (sdurocher@middlebury.edu)

2014-15 Application Information

Applications for Superblocks are accepted for groups of students in spaces throughout the campus. For larger houses, multiple themes for a single property may be submitted. All submitted applications will be reviewed on the strength the program and the availability of appropriate housing locations. Please note that this is a competitive process and not all submissions will be awarded housing. 

Small senior houses (eg. 637 College Street, Turner House, Homer Harris House) are not available as SuperBlocks.

Likely spaces include but are not limited to the following houses.  

  • Palmer House (30 beds)
    14 singles, 8 doubles, bathrooms. social area, TV room, fireplace, library, kitchen (refrigerator, oven, stove, sink, storage), laundry, elevator, attic, basement, storage
  • Prescott House (30 beds)
    14 singles, 8 doubles, bathrooms. social area, TV room, fireplace, kitchen (refrigerator, oven, stove, sink, storage), laundry, elevator, attic, basement, storage
  • Meeker House (18 beds)
    14 singles, 2 doubles, 4 bathrooms, multi-purpose room, 2 common rooms, dining area, kitchen (refrigerator, stove, oven, sink, storage), elevator

  • Munford House (31 beds)
    25 singles, 2 doubles, 7 bathrooms, 2 lounges, dining area, kitchen (refrigerator, oven, stove, sink, storage), laundry, Phone-a-thon room, elevator

  • Homestead House (15 beds)
    5 singles, 5 double, 2 bathrooms, lounge, dining area, kitchen (refrigerator, stove, oven, sink, storage), parking.
  • The “Mods” (Cousteau, Earhart, Norgay, Perry, Ride)
    7 beds (5 singles, 1 double). All five “Mods” will be offered, creating a themed, social and educational neighborhood. Each "Mod" provides ample social space, full kitchens, and proximate parking.


Application Information (2014-2015)

  • February 18  Applications and Preliminary Rosters due
  • February 19 – February 28:   20 minute presentations
  • March 4 – Offers extended
  • March 6  Response deadline and Final Rosters due

 Rosters:

  • Once your group submits an application, the group Representative must email a complete preliminary roster to Residential Systems Coordinator, Karin Hall-Kolts. This email must also be copied (cc) to all potential residents. Rosters must include:
    • Names of all of the residents in your house (must be rising Junior and Seniors—rising Sophomores may not be included)
    • Full legal names only—no nicknames please
    • Class years for each resident
    • Social House membership with house names (if applicable)
    • Names of any J-Term/Spring Term replacements for residents

Presentation Guidelines

  • Presentations should be no more than 20 minutes.
  • Not all members of the block need to be present.
  • Multimedia equipment will be available (Powerpoint, etc).
  • Candidates should discuss the following topics:
    • About their common interest
    • Why a residential space would benefit that interest
    • A detailed description of 3 programs your house would run (one for each term), including your audience
    • Resources your house would need to be successful.
  • A brief question and answer period will follow.