Mary Tabor

October 17, 2016-

Mount Ida College has invited Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow Mary Tabor, an internationally renowned journalist and writer for an intensive week-long visit October 17 – 20. Tabor will conduct classes, seminars, workshops, and lectures and will meet with students and faculty members informally throughout the week to share her practical knowledge in the areas of journalism and the craft and invention of fiction writing.

“Tabor will be a perfect fit for Mount Ida. Our students will have a chance to meet a world-class journalist and author with a deep knowledge of how to bridge the gap from business and politics to the creative world and how to establish a foundation for attaining life-long career goals based on a liberal arts education. Tabor helps to create better understanding and new connections between the academic and nonacademic worlds,” said Ronald Akie, Provost and Chief Academic Officer.  “We’re delighted that Mary Tabor will also have time to get to know our campus and to explore in depth how the classroom and campus relate to the broader society.”

Join us Tuesday, October 18th  7:00-7:45pm
“Mary Tabor on Business and Art”
Campus Center Theatre
Open to the Public

About Mary Tabor:

Mary Tabor published her first book of fiction at age 60 after a 16-year career in corporate America, a senior executive, director of public affairs writing for the oil industry’s trade association, landing her in both Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who of American Women. She was a high school English teacher who bridged the gap to the business world, rising on the corporate ladder while also raising two children. She then made a transition from the business world to the creative world, leaving her corporate job when she was 50 to earn an MFA degree in Creative Writing. Her book The Woman Who Never Cooked won Mid-List Press’s First Series Award. Tabor’s experience spans the worlds of journalism, business, education and fiction writing. She was a visiting writer at University of Missouri in Columbia, teaches fiction writing at George Washington University, the Smithsonian’s Campus-on-the-Mall, and works with the DC library to reach less-privileged populations on how to begin writing about  family, personal history and writing a story—the stuff of life. She’s been interviewed on XM Satellite Radio and Pacifica Radio to discuss Joyce, Shakespeare and others and her lifelong career-journey.

The Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellows program, which is administered by the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) in Washington, DC, brings prominent artists, diplomats, journalists, business leaders, and other professionals to campuses across the United States for a week-long residential program of classes, seminars, workshops, lectures, and informal discussions. For 35 years, the Visiting Fellows have been introducing students and faculty members at liberal arts colleges to a wide range of perspectives on life, society, community, and achievement. The Visiting Fellows program is available to all four-year colleges and universities.


October 5, 2016-


For any student at Mount Ida College fortunate enough to be taught by Suzanne St. Germain, Ed.D Associate Professor and Department Chair of Professional Studies in Education, the experience can be profound.

The moment you enter her classroom, you can instantly experience her passion for teaching.

A career educator, Professor St. Germain says her lifelong journey started three decades ago when, as a college sophomore, she was asked in biology class to hold a human brain in her hands. “I looked at that brain and thought that here was someone’s relative and marveled at what memories could be attached to it.”

In this moving moment, she made a commitment to brain-based teaching and has not only devoted herself to the field, but also brings that to her students every day. “Learning should be as natural as breathing,” she says.

“Part of my philosophy is if students can’t learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach the way they learn.” All students can learn, she adds.  “I share Howard Gardner’s philosophy, “It’s not HOW smart you are; it’s HOW you are smart.”

The rewards of her chosen profession are many. “The best part of teaching is witnessing the intellectual growth of my students, knowing I helped along the way. The classroom is our learning lab that extends to the world outside. Hearing the students making connections during our discussions to their own lives, tells me that they are seeing the relevance of our topics,” she says. “I really enjoy those A-Ha! moments immensely!”

And the recipients of Professor St. Germain’s teaching style will often hear “I believe in you.” Such a phrase she says is all too rare in the classroom.  “Being a teacher is not what I do, it’s who I am.  I want my students to love what they do and have the confidence to do what they love and I think I convey that to them. That, to me is the key to teaching and I hope that, for them, it will be as well.”

Community Plunge 2016
October 2, 2016-

It’s now a tradition. Day two on campus for new Mount Ida students was spent working with non-profit organizations as part of the 3rd annual Community Plunge. “It’s important that the newest members of our Mount Ida community embrace the concept of doing well by doing good from their arrival,” says Gregg Grenier, Director of Community Engagement.

For Community Plunge, Mount Ida’s Center for Community Engagement reached out this past summer to community groups to ascertain what their needs were and then aligned those needs with the energy and willingness of Mount Ida’s new students. These students were joined in the community by Orientation Ambassadors, Resident Assistants, and Mount Ida staff members.

“During Orientation we talked a lot about what it means to be an involved Mount Ida student,” says Grenier.  “We asked our newest students to 1) do something they had never done before, 2) do something you love, 3) do something that advances career expectations, and 4) give back to others.”

When students checked in at the tent for breakfast they were assigned an organization. “This assured that we were able to provide the student help that each group had requested,” says Grenier.  The students then were treated to remarks from Brian Shea, a Community Manager at the American Cancer Society.

This year, 300 people participated in 13 projects (5 on-campus and 8 off-campus) for an average of 3 hours each. “This equates to an economic impact on the Greater Boston community of $26,100,” says Grenier.  Based on the calculations from Volunteer Time, a volunteer hour in Massachusetts is worth $29.

“We are proud of our students and the enthusiasm they showed.  They were up bright and early, dressed in their Community Plunge shirts (designed by student Corey Brindamour) and raring to go,” Grenier says.  “Quite impressive when you think this was their first full day as college students, and we hope it will be part of the larger culture shift on campus.” 

The feedback from participating organizations was very positive as well and there were some wonderful unexpected outcomes.  “There was a group of 45 students who traveled to Dana Court, a low-income housing development in Waltham, where they partnered with the police and housing authority to clear the grounds of an after-school center and playground,” says Grenier.  “But what followed while they were hanging around after finishing early, was a discussion on community policing with Waltham’s Community Policing Officer, a very timely and productive session.”

This year’s volunteer activities included:

On-campus projects:

  • Students created get well cards for “Cards for Hospitalized Kids”
  • Students wrote letters to soldiers through “A Million Thanks”
  • Students helped draw/paint/craft decorations for the “American Cancer Society’s” high school and college conference
  • Students participated in a focus group to test the usability of the Wadsworth Library’s website
  • Students sorted books for the “Prison Books Program” in partnership with the Wadsworth Library

Off-campus projects:

  • Students sorted and packaged donations at “Cradles to Crayons”
  • Students tagged, sorted, and packaged donations at “Boomerangs Thrift Store” a part of the AIDS Action Network
  • Students helped clean, prepare classrooms, and greet guests at the “West Suburban YMCA”
  • Students helped set up preschool classrooms at “Family ACCESS of Newton”
  • Students helped set up classrooms, create bulletin boards, and paint murals at the “West Roxbury Urban Science Academy”
  • Students helped place yard signs around Newton for the “Newton Community Farm’s” fall festival
  • Students helped pick up and deliver donations from the elderly for “Newton At Home”
  • Students helped clean public buildings, playground, and grounds for the “Chesterbrook Community Foundation”