administrative assistant to the academic deans, is co-chair to the
Administrators and Faculty of Color Alliance (AFCA).
Working with Deans, Course Assistants and Teaching Apprentices
|Q: When were
you hired as the administrative assistant to the academic deans?
A: I started at Wesleyan in October 2001.
Q: What are some of your duties?
A: The majority of my day is spent on the phone responding to
inquiries from faculty and staff, reconciling accounts, gathering financial
data, and maintaining various files and databases.
Q: What goes on during a day in the Office of Academic Affairs?
A: My job is a little different each day and I really enjoy the
variations. Some days I spend most of my time maintaining the deans’
calendars and discretionary accounts, or working with proposals for internal
sources of funding such as pedagogical, fund for innovation and seed grants.
I also spend a great deal of time providing administrative support to the
Educational Policy Committee and managing the Course Assistant and Teaching
Q: What are the Course Assistant and Teaching Apprentice programs?
A: A Course Assistant helps a faculty member by preparing course materials,
managing logistics of a course and working with technology. They can receive
a $400 stipend for completing the work. Students in the Teaching Apprentice
Program work closely with a faculty mentor to understand the pedagogical
issues related to a particular course and discipline and to deepen the
student’s understanding of the subject matter. They receive course credit.
Q: Do you interact much with the students?
A: Unfortunately, my job doesn’t provide me the opportunity to
interact with students on a regular basis. When I do engage with students,
it is through AFCA or as a result of my role in Wesleyan’s Course Assistant
and Teaching Apprentice programs. I ensure the students who are involved in
these programs are properly registered for the tutorials, receive course
credit and issue their payroll.
Q: What are some of the challenges of your job?
A: One of the most recent was working with Jen Curran in Information
Technology Services in developing an electronic application and registration
process for Course Assistants and Teaching Apprentices. It was a lot of work
to orchestrate but it has really paid off because what was once a process of
shuffling 400 pieces of paper per semester is now wonderfully organized
within electronic portfolio.
Q: Who are the key people you work with in the Academic Deans section
of the Office of Academic Affairs?
A: I work closely with the deans of the three academic divisions,
LiLy Milroy, Don Moon and Joe Bruno, as well as with Billy Weitzer, senior
associate provost, and Joy Vodak, coordinator for the Dean of the College
Q: Tell me about your role as co-chair to the Administrators and
Faculty of Color Alliance (AFCA).
A: I work closely with my co-chair and friend Andy McGadney of
University Relations in planning and implementing current and future AFCA
programming. I also work closely with members of the AFCA executive
committee; Marina Melendez, Frank Kuan, Migdalia Pinkney, Lori Hunter,
Ricardo Morris and Dianna Dozier. Being a part of AFCA has provided me the
opportunity to give back to the Wesleyan community. It has also afforded me
the opportunity to meet and interact with members of the Wesleyan community
whom I ordinarily wouldn’t have met as part of my job in Academic Affairs.
Q: What is the purpose or goal of AFCA?
A: AFCA is a volunteer organization which seeks to strengthen and
enhance the relationship between the Wesleyan community, its employees and
students of color. Right now AFCA is going through a truly exciting period
because we are currently working on creating a strategic plan which will
help us to identify the organization’s key goals and objectives and to
clearly articulate our mission, values and responsibilities. We really want
the AFCA membership as well as the larger Wesleyan community to have a
better understanding of our goals and priorities.
Q: Where did you receive your education and in what?
A: I received a bachelor’s in psychology from Quinnipiac University
in 1998 and I recently completed my master’s of arts in liberal studies from
Wesleyan in May 2005.
Q: What are your hobbies?
A: I am avid reader and I really love planning and hosting parties.
Q: Where do you live, and do you have children?
A: I live in Meriden with my 5-year-old son, Josiah. We spend a lot
of time playing with our energetic dog, Sunny, and working on our soccer
Q: What would you say is the most unique thing about you?
A: I guess one could say I have a passion for fashion.
Q: What’s your favorite thing about working here?
A: I love working at Wesleyan. I think it is great to work in an
environment where learning is fundamental and ongoing, even among faculty
Olivia Bartlett, The Wesleyan Connection