November 27, 2014

See Lyme-Old Lyme High School’s Fall Play, Nazi Labor Camp Survivors to Speak After Performance

Director and history teacher Brett Eckhart gives instruction to cast members during a recent rehearsal for "Letters to Sala."

Lyme-Old Lyme High School fall play director and history teacher Brett Eckhart gives instruction to cast members during a recent rehearsal for “Letters to Sala.”

This year the Lyme-Old Lyme High School fall play will be “Letters to Sala.”  The performances will take place at 7:30 p.m. in the high school auditorium on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 14 and 15, with an admission price of $7, or $5 with a canned good.

LymeLine.com has received an exciting update to the performance details as follows:

Henny Rosenbaum Simon, an 89-year-old survivor of three camps and Ben Cooper, a liberator of Dachau, will be attending the Saturday performance.

Following the show, they will share some of their stories, and Cooper is going to bring some of the artifacts he has collected over the years.  He is a wonderfully engaging speaker and the items he has to share (e.g., his army jacket to match the one in a photo of himself at age 19, or the 20 foot Nazi flag taken from a building), are both chilling and fascinating.

“Letters to Sala” is a true story about a woman “sharing her past with her family” through letters that she wrote while in a labor camp during World War II, according to Brett Eckhart, the director of the play, who also teaches in the history department at the high school.  Eckhart says he “came across [the play] by accident” while “sifting through some [play options] online.” He chose the play because students had asked for a more dramatic piece, rather than his usual comedic selections.  Being a history teacher, Eckhart says he just, “fell in love with the story,” which is based on real life.

The play details the “trials and tribulations of a young lady in the Holocaust,” comments Eckhart.  Sala is an old woman by the time she divulges the letters to her daughter, Ann, and her two granddaughters, Caroline and Elizabeth, so the play takes place in both the modern day and the 1940s during World War II.  Eckhart wants “Letters to Sala” to “shed light on labor camps,” which were not like the well-known concentration camps.

“Not many know about the labor camps, which were instituted during the war,” says Eckhart. Operation Schmelt, which began at the start of World War II, involved the creation of 177 different labor camps around Nazi Germany and its allies so that those countries were supplied with people to sew uniforms and complete other menial tasks for the soldiers.  In the labor camp, Sala, along with the other workers, was allowed to send and receive mail until 1943.

Cast members rehearse a scene from "Sala's Gift."

Cast members rehearse a scene from “Letters from Sala.”

Eckhart wants the performance to be “educational as well as entertaining” and has reached out to local survivors of the war and also children of survivors to attend the performances and speak to the cast, so that they might gain insight in to what life was like at that time.  At the end of each performance, a screen will come down in front of the stage, and Eckhart will show pictures of the real Sala and her family, as well as other labor camp workers whom Sala knew.

“Letters to Sala” is based on a book titled, “Sala’s Gift,” written by Ann Kirschner, Sala’s daughter, as well as the true accounts that Sala gave her daughter and grandchildren when she showed them the letters.  Anne donated the letters to the New York Public Library, which currently has the letters on show in an exhibition in their building. The Library also has a permanent online exhibition on their website, so that people can view the historical documents from any online location worldwide.

Eckhart concludes, “If the play is done right, the audience will be emotionally drained — in a good way.”

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Lyme-Old Lyme Public Schools Offer Assistance with Pre-School Development Concerns

If you have a child between the ages of three and five and have concerns about his or her development in areas such as language, motor skills, cognition, social/emotional, or self-help skills, the Lyme-Old Lyme Public Schools Preschool Team can be contacted for information, consultation, screening or evaluation.

Questions and concerns should be directed to Myra Gipstein at 860-434-7838.

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Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts Becomes Sixth College of University of New Haven

The Chandler Academic Center at Lyme Academy College.

The Chandler Academic Center at Lyme Academy College.

The University of New Haven announced today that it has finalized its affiliation with Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts, making the fine arts school in Old Lyme the university’s sixth college.

“This a historic event, and we look forward to providing outstanding educational opportunities to generations of aspiring artists,” said University of New Haven President Steven H. Kaplan. “The affiliation of our two institutions will raise the stature of fine arts education in the Northeast while providing expanded benefits, services and opportunities to students, faculty and alumni at both the University of New Haven and Lyme Academy College. We also intend to expand the outreach efforts at Lyme Academy College to benefit local residents and, in fact, all Connecticut residents.”

The Board of Governors of the University of New Haven and the Board of Trustees at Lyme Academy College approved the affiliation in early April. The Connecticut Office of Higher Education and the New England Association of Schools and Colleges also approved the affiliation. Since that time, both institutions have worked to merge their student services, faculty units and other support and operating systems. Those integrations will continue through the upcoming academic year.

Todd Jokl, associate professor and past chair of the UNH Department of Art and Design, will serve as the campus dean at Lyme Academy College. Jokl will be based at the College in Old Lyme. Jokl received his bachelor’s degree from Yale University and his Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Connecticut.

“I envision great things happening in the months and years ahead,” Kaplan said. “We will work closely with Lyme Academy College to create a top-tier fine arts education program.”

The affiliation presents many advantages to both institutions. Lyme Academy College will benefit from the operational breadth and depth of the University of New Haven, gaining access to an expanded range of liberal arts courses and complementary UNH art programs, such as design and digital media. The University of New Haven also offers study-abroad opportunities at its campus in Tuscany, Italy, where Lyme Academy College students can attend classes. Lyme Academy College students also will gain access to the university’s broad liberal arts program and new learning opportunities.

Administrators have said that little will change regarding the student experience at Lyme Academy College. The small classes will be retained, and students will continue to be provided the hands-on experiences and the opportunity to become immersed in figurative and representational art. But through the affiliation, students will be provided access to more courses, technologies and academic initiatives that will strengthen their educational experience.

The University of New Haven will add Lyme Academy College’s high-quality Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.) program to its curriculum, making it possible for UNH students to study painting, sculpture, drawing and illustration. The university does not currently offer a B.F.A.

“Our university is known for the unique experiential programs it offers to students,” Kaplan said. “The program at Lyme Academy College fits in well with our rapidly expanding offerings at our main campus in West Haven, our new campus in Orange, and our international program in Italy.

“We are determined to protect and preserve the mission of Lyme Academy College, retaining the unique qualities that appeal to students seeking an arts degree in an idyllic, rural setting that nurtures creativity,” he added.

The University of New Haven is a private, top-tier comprehensive institution recognized as a national leader in experiential education. The university has 80 degree programs at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels. Founded in 1920, the university enrolls approximately 1,800 graduate students and more than 4,600 undergraduates.

Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts is nationally known for its academic tradition of figurative and representational fine art that prepares students for a lifetime of contemporary creative practice. The college offers bachelor of fine arts degrees in drawing, illustration, painting, and sculpture (full- and part-time study); certificates in painting and sculpture, a post-baccalaureate program; continuing education for adults; and a pre-college program for students aged 15-18.

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Lyme-Old Lyme High School Fields, Fences, Nets Damaged by Car

Tire tracks indicate the car's route.

Tire tracks indicate the car’s route.

An Old Lyme man stands accused of driving a car over Lyme-Old Lyme High School playing fields early Monday morning.  Connor Robbins, 23, is also believed to have driven through a wooden fence and guard-rail, bringing down safety nets in the process.

The tracks head towards a wooden fence.

The tracks head towards a wooden fence.

As shown in the photo below, the car was abandoned on the running track.

car

Photo by Michael Mann.

Robbins has been charged with first-degree criminal mischief.

Fence and field damage.

Fence and field damage.

Read the full story in this article by David Moran published July 21 on the [Hartford] Courant.com.

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MacCurdy Salisbury Awards Educational Grants for Coming School Year

Recipients of MacCurdy Salisbury awards gather for a photo at the Lyme Art Association.

Recipients of MacCurdy Salisbury awards gather for a photo at the Lyme Art Association.

MacCurdy Salisbury Educational Foundation held its Annual Reception for this year’s High School Seniors receiving Foundation awards on Thursday afternoon, June 12, 2014 at the Lyme Art Association in Old Lyme, Connecticut.

At the event the Foundation distributed $90,000 in grants to 30 graduating seniors from Lyme and Old Lyme. Foundation awards are based on the degree of financial assistance a student requires to meet their college expenses. If a student keeps a satisfactory grade point level they will continue to receive the same award for another three years of their undergraduate studies.

For the upcoming 2014 – 2015 school year the Foundation will give out a total of $259,000 to 86 students from Lyme and Old Lyme who are attending colleges throughout the United States.

From left to right, Foundation Treasurer Edward "Ned" Perkins, Salutatorian Robert Melchreit, Valedictorian  Isabelle Foster and Foundation President Rowland Ballek stand together after presentation of the awards.

From left to right, Foundation Treasurer Edward “Ned” Perkins, Salutatorian Robert Melchreit, Valedictorian Isabelle Foster and Foundation President Rowland Ballek stand together after presentation of the awards.

The Foundation also presented two $500 awards at the reception; the W.E.S. Griswold Valedictorian Award to Isabelle Foster of Old Lyme who will attend Stanford and the Willis Umberger Salutatorian Award to Robert Melchreit of  Lyme who will attend  Wesleyan. Bill Griswold was President of the foundation from 1965 to 1992 and Willis Umberger was Secretary/Treasurer of the Foundation from 1966 to 1986.

At the reception Foundation President Rowland Ballek thanked the many supporters in the audience and the community whose contributions and bequests help grow the Foundation’s fund. He said, “We want to keep growing our endowment fund so our grants can keep up with the ever increasing cost of tuitions.”  In the past seven years the Foundation has given out $1,581,850 to students from Lyme and Old Lyme.

The MacCurdy Salisbury Educational Foundation has a long standing tradition of providing financial support to local students going on to further their education at colleges and universities after their high school years. Founded in 1893, the Foundation originally helped support educational activities in Old Lyme.  It began giving direct grants to students to continue their education beyond High School in 1918, a practice that continues today.  In 1973 Berenice Brevillier started the Lyme portion of the fund so students from both towns, the majority of which attend the Regional District 18 system, could participate.

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Failure Teaches Success Says Lyme-Old Lyme High School Honor Essayist at Commencement

All photos by Ellie Krasney. The ceremonial hat toss took place against a beautiful blue sky backdrop.

All photos by Ellie Krasney.
The ceremonial hat toss took place against a beautiful blue sky backdrop.

One hundred and thirteen young men and women took their place in the annals of Lyme-Old Lyme High School history on Friday evening. Despite torrential rain on Thursday, the sun shone brightly on Friday and by 6 p.m. when the Commencement Ceremony began on the field between the middle and high schools, the air was still warm and the sky clear.

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After the traditional procession to the music of Elgar’s ‘Pomp and Circumstance’, the Pledge of Allegiance and the singing of the National Anthem, Class President David Peck (above) welcomed the large crowd to the ceremony.

Isabel_Ritrovato_Honor_Essayist_compressed

Honor Essayist Iasabel Ritrovato, above, spoke of the importance of failure to her classmates reminding them that failure is a great teacher.

Robert_melchreit_Salutatorian_compressed

Although his hat gave him a little trouble, Salutatorian Robert Melchreit, above right, had no trouble with his speech saying that the ability of his class to change people’s mind would give it special strength as each member traveled life’s journey.

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Finally Valedictorian Isabelle Foster, above, used the sharpening of a pencil to muse upon the as yet unwritten story of the Class of 2014’s future and its potential place in the history books.

Diplomas were presented, a farewell was said and the Alma Mater was sung … and the Class of 2014 processed out of the ceremony to celebrate … and start their new lives.

Lyme-Old Lyme High School Class of 2014

Benjamin Evan Abraham, Megan Elizabeth Astley, Fiona Maire Barrett, Maria Nicole Basileo, Samantha Ellison Beers, Eric Martel Behringer, Hannah Katherine Behringer, Mikayla Ann Bellaria, Madelin Kelly Berry, Marley Joann Bocian, Taylor McKernan Bourne, Meredith Linda Britton, Phoebe Louise Brown, Allison Leigh Buckley, Tucker Douglas Burr, William Joseph Buscetto Jr.,

Kristina Yang Cain, Shawn Francis Caramante, Jack Robert Castonguay, Daniel Lawrence Chapman, Charles Taylor Clark, Philip Michael Cohen, Ryan Patrick Comerford, Aidan James Cotter-Garfield, Mercedes Rose Crespo, Emily Ann Czarnecki, Jeffrey Allen Davis, Cameron Amado De Los Santos, Dillon Michael Dean-Frazier, Hanna Michelle DeBruyn, Jennifer Casey Dill, Michael Sergi Dolishny, Jackson Michael Driscoll, Jenna Catherine Duxbury, Chelsea Ann Evankow.

Russell Tyler Faircloth, John Thomas Fairfield-Sonn, Paige Nicole Flagge, William Clyde Fogle, Isabelle Sophie Foster, Siera Ashley Frascarelli, John Cotter Freer, Trent William Garbati, Madalyn Helen Gibson-Williams, Sarah Jane Golden, Corina Maria Goodson, Madelyne Rose Grabowski, Abigail Mary Guitar,

Olivia Adriana Hack, Philip Edward Peter Hallwood, Olivia Ann Henderson, Collyn Tyler Herel, Alexander Tappan Hine, Peter Trumbull Hine, Samuel Holcombe, Joab Napoleon Hunt, Cooper Joseph Kendall, Kaetlin Alexandria Kolar, Sarah Konishesky, Emily Morgan Kramm, Joshua Levi Krasney, Erin Jane Kroes, Hannah Lee Lacey, Brianna Fantasia Landry, Jessica Ann Lee, Jacob Carlson Martin, Kelly Gabrielle Mastrianna, Gavin Patrick McCarthy.

Nicholas Ryan McKnight, Robert Charles Melchreit, Morgan Elizabeth Merrick, Nicholas Max Milazzo, David Richard Muckle, Kyle Patrick O’Neil, Jeffrey Thomas Paine, Dimitri Thomas Papasian, David Larson Peck, Ella Ruth Pilgrim, Amy Yuxuan Qian, Kaleigh Laura Reynolds, Graham Wheeler Richartz, Kaylin Nicole Riggs, Isabel Trew Ritrovato, Sean Michael Robertson, Seth Taylor Rohrberg, Lauren Anna Romeo, Stuart Caldwell Ross, Michael Patrick Rouillard,

Erick Martinez Saenz, Spencer Stansfield Saunders, Machlan James MacDonald Sawden, Alison Ann Scott, Elizabeth Ann Scott, William Jamieson Scott, William Everett Sherer, Alexis Heap Sibley, Chase Dalton Sielbeck, Emma Winifred Stanton, Keriann Claire Sullivan, Sierra Madison Sunshine, Joseph Dean Sweeney,

Tatianna Nicole Thompson, David Harrison Tiffany, Meghan Elizabeth Trausch, Cole David Turner, Christian John Valli, Jacob Pierson Watts-St.Germain, Lisa Ann Weigle, Kaylyn Mara Wiese, Stephen Joseph Williams Jr., Brian Alexander Wolfe, Shennandoah Marie Wordell, Laura Munling Yee.

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Graduation Tonight at Lyme-Old Lyme High School

Hats high by Kim 500

Lyme-Old Lyme High School will hold its Commencement Ceremony for the Class of 2014 this evening on the field between the middle and high schools starting at 6 p.m. Entry to the enclosed area of the field is by ticket only, but the public is welcome to view the ceremony from beyond the enclosure perimeter.

Congratulations to the Class of 2014!

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Lyme-Old Lyme HS Class of 2015 Offers Document Shredding Service Today

Today, Saturday, June 14, the Junior Class of 2015 will shred documents for businesses and individuals.  Anyone can bring their papers to Lyme-OId Lyme High School from 9 a.m. to 12 noon to shred for $10 a bag.

Many people have unwanted papers sitting in boxes or on desks around their house.  The papers could be old tax returns, bank statements, bills, credit card statements, newspapers or school ditto sheets.  This fundraiser provides the community an opportunity to securely discard unwanted papers from houses or businesses.

The Class of 2015 is excited to hold this Shred-it Fundraiser because the demand for secure document shredding services is growing.  This fundraiser provides a low cost way to accomplish this community service.

This high school class has conducted this fundraiser for two years.  In the past, it has collected over 120 bags of unwanted papers and generated over $1,200.  The class used the funds for its class activities, which included three dances and many community service projects throughout town.

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Lyme-Old Lyme HS is First in State to Receive Safe Sports School Award

Lyme-Old Lyme High School Athletic Director Bill Buscetto.

Lyme-Old Lyme High School Athletic Director Bill Buscetto.

Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS) is the recipient of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) Safe Sports School award for its Wildcats athletics program.  It is the first school in Connecticut to receive the award. The award champions safety and recognizes secondary schools that provide safe environments for student athletes.  It also reinforces the importance of providing the best level of care, injury prevention and treatment.

“Lyme-Old Lyme High School is honored to receive this 1st Team recognition from the NATA, and we remain committed to keeping our student athletes safe during physical education classes, team practices and games so they can accomplish their own goals of great competition, winning records, fair sportsmanship and good health, ” said Bill Buscetto, LOLHS Athletic Director.

He continued, “Our goal is to provide our athletics program with the highest safety standards for our players.  It is a testament to the high quality of care provided by our athletic trainer, Aubrey Davis, and all of our coaches.”

Physical activity is very important for today’s youth, according to NATA president Jim Thornton, MS, ATC, CES.  “There has been an increase in competitive sports, which are, unfortunately, not without risk.  Brain injury/concussion, cardiac arrest, heat illness, exertional sickling, cervical spine fractures along with other injuries and illnesses are potentially life-threatening.”  Proper planning with proper equipment and personnel is vital to the safety of student athletes today, he notes.

In order to achieve Safe Sport School status, as Lyme-Old Lyme has done, athletic programs must demonstrate the following:

  • Create a positive athletic health care administrative system
  • Provide or coordinate pre-participation physical examinations
  • Promote safe and appropriate practice and competition facilities
  • Plan for selection, fit function and proper maintenance of athletic equipment
  • Provide a permanent, appropriately equipped area to evaluate and treat injured athletes
  • Develop injury and illness prevention strategies, including protocols for environmental conditions
  • Provide or facilitate injury intervention
  • Create and rehearse a venue-specific Emergency Action Plan
  • Provide or facilitate psychosocial consultation and nutritional counseling/education
  • Be sure athletes and parents are educated of the potential benefits and risks in sports as well as their responsibilities

For more information, visit www.athletictrainers.org.

 

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Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Kindergarten Registration is Today, Tomorrow

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Registration for Kindergarten in Lyme-Old Lyme Public Schools for the fall of 2014 is being held Monday, May 12, and Tuesday, May 13, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Lyme Consolidated School and Mile Creek School

Children who will be five-years-old on or before Jan. 1, 2015 are eligible to register for Kindergarten for September 2014.

While you may complete the registration process at either school, your child’s school placement will depend on District attendance zones.

Please bring to registration your child’s

  • Birth Certificate
  • Immunization/Health Records
  • Three forms of proof of residency

If you cannot register on these days, call the school at these numbers to place your child’s name on the Kindergarten list:

Lyme Consolidated: 860-434-1233

Mile Creek: 860-434-2209

 

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Voters Overwhelmingly Support Lyme-Old Lyme School Budget

May_2013_headshotIn likely one of the lowest turnouts on record, Lyme and Old Lyme voters passed the Region 18 budget by a substantial margin of 401 votes in both towns combined.  The results showed 69 residents voted against the budget in Old Lyme and 21 in Lyme, while 258 supported it in Old Lyme and 143 in Lyme.

These results reflect 21.1 and 6.4 percent No votes in Old Lyme and Lyme respectively.  In total, the No vote was 18.3 percent in contrast to an overwhelming 72.5 percent of Yes votes.

The budget of $31,963,401 for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015 had been unanimously recommended by the board.

Region 18 Superintendent Ian Neviaser, pictured left, was delighted with the result, commenting, “Overall, we’re very happy.  We appreciate the support of the community, which allows us to continue the great education programs that we have here. I’m proud to say we’ve passed the lowest [increase in a]  budget in history, which will allow us to increase student access to technology and continue the redistricting plan.  This [latter] will now enable some areas of Center School to be converted to Pre-Kindergarten facilities.”

The budget is split between the two towns according to enrollment with Old Lyme being responsible for 79.1 percent of the total while Lyme pays for the remaining 20.9 percent.

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Referendum on Region 18 School Budget Today

A district-wide referendum on the 2014-15 budget is being held today in both Lyme and Old Lyme between the hours of 6 a.m. and 8 p.m.   Voting will take place at Cross Lane Firehouse for Old Lyme residents and Hamburg Firehouse for Lyme residents.

The proposed budget of $31,963,401 for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015 has been unanimously recommended by the board.  It reflects a 0.7 percent increase over the current budget, the lowest increase on record.

The budget is split between the two towns according to enrollment with Old Lyme being responsible for 79.1 percent of the total while Lyme pays for the remaining 20.9 percent.

Click here to view options for reading the Region 18 Budget Book online.

The individual town results will be announced at the respective polling stations shortly after 8 p.m. and published on LymeLine within  minutes of their announcement.  The final result reflects the combined tallies from both towns.

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Lyme-Old Lyme School Budget Referendum Today

Tonight at 7:30 p.m., the District 18 Board of Education hosts a public hearing in the Lyme-Old Lyme HIGH SCHOOL auditorium on their proposed budget of $31,963,401 for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015 as recommended by the board.  The proposed budget reflects a 0.7 percent increase over the current budget with just over three-quarters of a percentage point of the increase made up of debt service on the high school renovation.  The remainder of the increase is accounted for by changes in programs and operations through out the district.

The budget is split between the two towns according to enrollment with Old Lyme being responsible for 79.1 percent of the total while Lyme pays for the remaining 20.9 percent.

Click to view options for reading the Region 18 Budget Book online.

A district-wide referendum on the budget will be held tomorrow in both Lyme and Old Lyme  between the hours of 6 a.m. and 8 p.m.   Voting will take place at Cross Lane Firehouse for Old Lyme residents and Hamburg Firehouse for Lyme residents.

The individual town results will be announced at the respective polling stations shortly after 8 p.m. and published on LymeLine within  minutes of their announcement.  The final result reflects the combined tallies from both towns.

Regular board of selectmen’s meetings are also scheduled for today with Lyme’s starting at 3:30 p.m. at Lyme Town Hall and Old Lyme’s commencing at 7:30 p.m. in Memorial Town Hall.

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Lyme Academy College Joins University of New Haven

Chandler_in_summer_cropped
The governing bodies of both the University of New Haven and Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts have unanimously approved a proposal for Lyme Academy College to become the university’s sixth college.

“The affiliation of these two outstanding institutions is an exciting and historic event,” said University of New Haven President Steven H. Kaplan. “This will raise the stature of fine arts education in the Northeast and expand the benefits, services and opportunities that the university and Lyme Academy College provide to students, faculty, alumni and all Connecticut residents.”

Robert W. Pratt Jr., chairman of the Board of Trustees of Lyme Academy College, agreed, adding, “The cultural, educational and civic resources of both institutions will become stronger, more exciting and increasingly available to a larger constituency.”

The Board of Trustees of Lyme Academy College and the Board of Governors of the University of New Haven both provided their approvals in early April. The Connecticut Office of Higher Education and the New England Association of Schools and Colleges also approved the affiliation.

“I am grateful for the bold decision of both boards,” Kaplan said. “We will work closely with Lyme Academy College to support and enhance what already is a top-tier fine arts education program that is one of the cultural and educational jewels of the Northeast.”

The affiliation presents many advantages to both institutions. Lyme Academy College will benefit from the operational breadth and depth of the University of New Haven, gaining access to an expanded range of liberal arts courses and complementary UNH art programs, such as design and digital media. The University of New Haven also offers study-abroad opportunities at its campus outside Florence, Italy, where Lyme Academy College students can attend classes. Lyme Academy College students also will gain access to the university’s growing portfolio of new and exciting learning opportunities.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA“Very little will change as regards the student experience,” said Lyme Academy College President Scott Colley. “We will retain the acclaimed essence of the college – the small size of our classes, the hands-on experiences and the opportunity to become immersed in representational art. But we will gain access to an expanded reservoir of courses, technologies and academic initiatives that will strengthen the educational experience. Additionally, the opportunity to study abroad in Italy is particularly appealing to our students.

“After 20 years as an academy and almost another 20 as a fully accredited independent college, this affiliation represents a wonderful opportunity for Lyme Academy College to take the next step in its evolution as it becomes part of a much larger university, while retaining all the attributes of a small institution,” Colley continued.

The University of New Haven will add Lyme Academy College’s high-quality Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.) program to its curriculum, making it possible for UNH students to study painting, sculpting, drawing and illustration. The university does not currently offer a B.F.A.

“Our university is known for the unique experiential programs it offers to students. The program at Lyme Academy College fits in well with our rapidly expanding offerings at our main campus in West Haven, our new campus in Orange, and our international program in Italy,” Kaplan said.

“We are determined to protect and preserve the mission of Lyme Academy College, retaining the unique qualities that appeal to students seeking an arts degree in an idyllic, rural setting in Old Lyme, Conn., that nurtures creativity,” he added.

The University of New Haven is a private, top-tier comprehensive institution recognized as a national leader in experiential education. The university has 80 degree programs at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels. Founded in 1920, the university enrolls approximately 1,800graduate students and more than 4,600 undergraduates.

Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts continues the academic tradition of figurative and representational fine art while preparing students for a lifetime of contemporary creative practice. The college offers the bachelor of fine arts degree in drawing, illustration, painting, and sculpture (full- and part-time study); certificates in painting and sculpture; a post-baccalaureate program; continuing education for adults; and a pre-college program for students aged 15-18. The college is located at 84 Lyme St. in Old Lyme.

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Old Lyme Land Trust Hosts Mile Creek School Nature Trail Guided Walk Today

The poster promoting the walk features a salamander and a crocus.

The poster promoting the walk features a salamander and a crocus.

The Old Lyme Land Trust is sponsoring a guided walk on the new educational Nature Trail across from Mile C reek School at 191 Mile Creek Rd, Old Lyme in honor of Earth Day.  The walk will be held Sunday, April 27, at 2 p.m.

Trail map of the Mile Creek Preserve.

Trail map of the Mile Creek School Nature Trail.

The walk will be led by Pamela Hine, a professor of Botany at Connecticut College.

The Mile Creek Nature Trail was created last year with help from the then third grade class, who painted all the posts that dot the trail.  The trail, which is walking distance from Mile Creek School, will hopefully be incorporated into the curriculum of the students, who will eventually span from preschool to fifth grade.
Points of interest along the trail include interesting facts about the geology and history, as well as the flora and fauna.
The walk is anticipated to take about an hour and all are welcome.  Parking is possible at the preserve entrance, which is 0.2 miles from the entrance, or at Mile Creek School.
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Conniff Presents Inaugural LOL Education Foundation Lecture Today

Richard Conniff

Richard Conniff

The Lyme Old Lyme Education Foundation (LOLEF) has announced that its first annual lecture, hosted by the Lyme Art Association (LAA), will be an evening with Old Lyme’s own Richard Conniff on Sunday, April 27, at 5:30 p.m.

The title of Conniff’s lecture is “Swimming with Piranhas at Feeding Time:  My Life Doing Dumb Things with Animals.”  His vast experience with animals includes collecting tarantulas in the Peruvian Amazon, tracking leopards with !Kung San hunters in the Namibian desert, climbing the Mountains of the Moon in western Uganda, and trekking through the Himalayas of Bhutan in pursuit of tigers and the mythical migur.  With humor and insight, he recounts his adventures in the strange and fascinating world of wild animals.

Book cover of "Swimming with Piranhas at Feeding Time"

Book cover of “Swimming with Piranhas at Feeding Time: My Life Doing Dumb Things with Animals.”

Conniff writes about behavior, on two, four, six, and sometimes eight legs.  His latest book is The Species Seekers:  Heroes, Fools, and the Mad Pursuit of Life on Earth, about the great age of species discovery.  He won a National Magazine Award in 1997 and a 2009 Gerald Loeb Award for Distinguished Business and Financial Journalism.  He was a 2007 Guggenheim Fellow.

His articles have appeared in Time, Smithsonian, The Atlantic, The New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, and other publications.  He is a frequent commentator on NPR’s Marketplace and in The New York Timesand has written and presented television shows for the National Geographic Channel, TBS, and the BBC, among others.

Conniff is the author of seven books, including Swimming with Piranhas at Feeding Time:  My Life Doing Dumb Stuff with Animals (Norton, 2009), The Natural History of the Rich: A Field Guide (Norton, 2002) and Spineless Wonders:  Strange Tales of the Invertebrate World (Holt, 1996).

Wine and light hors d’oeuvres will be served.  Tickets are $12 for non-members of the LAA and $10 for members.  Call the LAA at 860. 434.7802 to reserve your seats.

Proceeds to benefit the LOLEF,  a non-profit organization which supports supplemental excellence in programs and technologies in the Region 18 schools and community.

For more information about LOLEF, visit www.lolef.org.

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Lyme-Old Lyme HS Environmental Club Honors Earth Day 2014 with Special Event Tonight: All Welcome

An osprey brings lunch.

An osprey delivers lunch.

Earth Day 2014 is this coming Tuesday, April 22, and the Lyme-Old Lyme High School Environmental Club is hosting two speakers at 7 p.m. at the high school at 69, Lyme Street in Old Lyme.  Students from high schools in the local region, as well as the general public, are invited to attend.

Before the speakers take the stage, the audience will be able to visit with various groups who will be manning information tables in the Commons area of the high school.  These groups will include the Lyme and Old Lyme Land Trusts, the Old Lyme Conservation and Open Space Commissions, the Potapaug Audubon Society, the Tributary Mill Conservancy and the CT River Gateway Commission.

The theme on which the speakers will focus is: “Spring Migrants And Our Coastal Food Chain: Alewife, Menhaden, and Osprey.”

First to speak will be conservation biologist and ornithological expert, Dr. Paul Spitzer, who will discuss his current study of osprey in the lower Connecticut River estuary.

Inspired by his mentor Roger Tory Peterson, and Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, Spitzer was part of the movement that banned DDT in 1972, documenting its correlation to the thinning of osprey egg shells.  He is now collecting data related to the over-fishing of menhaden, a primary food source for osprey chicks.

Spitzer will be joined by Connecticut DEEP biologist Steve Gephard, supervisor for the State’s Diadromous Fish and Conservation Enhancement programs.  Gephard will discuss efforts to restore and protect the fish that migrate between Long Island Sound, the Connecticut River and its tributaries.

It was announced last week that President Obama has appointed Gephard to serve as the Commissioner of the Council of North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organization.

According to Congressman Joe Courtney’s office, this is “an international organization established by an intergovernmental convention in 1984 that seeks to restore and manage Atlantic salmon populations”.

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Old Lyme’s Alexandra Trausch Named Stonehill SURE Scholar

Old Lyme resident Alexandra Trausch, a member of the Class of 2015 at Stonehill College in Easton, Mass., will be one of 50 students at the College who will be conducting research with Stonehill faculty this summer through the Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) Program.

Trausch will be working with Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience John McCoy on a project titled “Social Cognition and Schizophrenia & Improving Cortical Function and Cognition in Schizophrenia.”

Trausch’s project will utilize both brain slice (in vitro) and freely behaving (in vivo) specimen models of gamma band oscillations to determine if drugs targeting mGluR5, a type of glutamate receptor, can rescue schizophrenia-like abnormal gamma oscillations.  In addition, Traush will attempt to identify how mGLUR5 affects the developmental maturation of the brain circuits responsible for generating gamma oscillation. This research could lead to the development of new classes of drugs for improved treatment of schizophrenia. Trausch and one other student, both neuroscience majors, will present their research findings at the regional NEURON conference.

The scholars and their faculty mentors are the 19th group to work under the SURE Program, which provides students with an opportunity to perform significant, publishable research under the guidance of an experienced faculty researcher.

The research experience will help to provide Stonehill students with a competitive advantage in graduate and professional school applications and in post-college employment opportunities, as well as to provide assistance to faculty in research activities.

Trausch was a member of the Class of 2011 at Lyme-Old Lyme High School.  She is the daughter of Joe Trausch and Grace DeGrooth Trausch of Old Lyme.

Stonehill is a selective Catholic college located in Easton, Mass.  It has over 2,500 students in 80+ academic programs in the liberal arts, sciences, and pre-professional fields.

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Lyme-Old Lyme HS Environmental Club Honored by Old Lyme Land Trust

LOLHS members (from left to right) Isabel Ritrovato, Hugh Cipparone, Madalyn Gibson-Williams, Philip Hallwood and club adviser Heather Fried were honored as 2013 Volunteers of the Year at  the Old Lyme Land Trust's Annual Meeting last Sunday.

LOLHS Environmental Club members (from left to right) Isabel Ritrovato, Hugh Cipparone, Madalyn Gibson-Williams, Philip Hallwood and club adviser Heather Fried were honored as 2013 Volunteers of the Year at the Old Lyme Land Trust’s Annual Meeting last Sunday.

At its 48th Annual Meeting, the Old Lyme Land Trust (OLTT) presented its “Volunteer of the Year” award to members of the Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS) Environmental Club.  On hand to receive the award were Isabel Ritrovato, club president, Madalyn Gibson-Williams, Hugh Cipparone and Philip Hallwood, as well as club adviser and LOLHS teacher, Heather Fried.

The Club has provided OLLT with critical stewardship assistance, clearing trails on the OLLT Goberis-Chadwick Preserve and blazing a new trail on the Esther and Bob Heller Preserve.

“There is discussion among environmental groups that today’s youth is not connected to nature and the outdoors, and concern about where the next generation of conservationists will come from,” said OLLT President Christina Clayton. She noted Ritrovato and Fried had participated on a panel devoted to this subject co-sponsored by OLLT, Lyme Land Conservation Trust and Connecticut Audubon Society in the autumn of 2012.

Clayton continued, “But it was a pleasure to behold how efficient these high school students were; how comfortable they were in the woods; and how they were enjoying themselves.  You would have no concern about the future of conservation if you watched them.”

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Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School Teams Share Victory in CT Science Olympiad

Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School science team members display their medals after both LOLMS teams shared  first place honors in the state tournament.

Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School science team members display their medals after both LOLMS teams shared first place honors in the state Science Olympiad.

Two Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School (LOLMS) teams shared top honors to win the Connecticut Science Olympiad for the third year in a row.  In an extraordinary performance, team members from LOLMS won a medal (1st,2nd or 3rd) in 23 of the 24 events.

The teams now move on to the national competition in Florida which takes place May 16-17.

Congratulations to science teacher Shannon Glorioso, and Lucy and Johnny Walters, who head up the after-school science program that makes this all possible.  And, of course, congratulations also to all the students who participate in the program.

Go Wildcat Scientists!

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