Eastern Breaks Into List of Top 25 Public Regional Universities

Written by Ed Osborn

eastern_front_entranceFor the first time, Eastern Connecticut State University made the list of the top 25 regional public universities in the North in this year’s U.S. News and World Report’s 2018 edition of “Best Colleges.” Eastern was the highest ranked university among the four Connecticut state universities. The annual rankings were released on Sept. 12.

•Theatre students perform Cervantes' "Pedro, The Great Pretender," as the first production in the Proscenium Theatre of Eastern's new Fine Arts Instructional Center

• Theatre students perform Cervantes’ “Pedro, The Great Pretender,” as the first production in the Proscenium Theatre of Eastern’s new Fine Arts Instructional Center

Regional universities such as Eastern are ranked on the basis of 16 criteria that include peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, admissions selectivity, financial resources and alumni giving. The North Region includes colleges and universities from New England, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland.

•Biology major Elizabeth DelBuono '17 is in the graduate program in Genetic Counseling at Sarah Lawrence College.

• Biology major Elizabeth DelBuono ’17 is in the graduate program in Genetic Counseling at Sarah Lawrence College.

“I am gratified to see Eastern ranked in the top 25 public institutions in the North in this year’s U.S. News and World Report’s 2018 Best Colleges report,” said Eastern President Elsa Nunez. “Our commitment to high standards, our focus on providing students with personal attention, and the introduction of new academic programs have resulted in our favorable ranking. Students and their families turn to the Best Colleges rankings to help decide where to attend college.  These newest rankings reaffirm that Eastern is providing a relevant and high quality education on our beautiful residential campus.”

This year’s U.S. News and World Report rankings included reviews of 1,389 schools nationwide and are available at www.usnews.com/colleges. They will also be published in the Best Colleges 2017 Guidebook, published by U.S. News & World Report and available on newsstands on Oct. 10.

For the past 33 years, the U.S. News and World Report rankings, which group colleges based on categories created by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, have grown to be the most comprehensive research tool for students and parents considering higher education opportunities.

Hundreds of Eastern Students Attend Student Activities Fair

Written by Jolene Potter

Organization of Latin American Students

Organization of Latin American Students

Willimantic, Conn. – More than 500 students attended Eastern Connecticut State University’s annual Fall Student Activities Fair and President’s Picnic on Sept. 11 from 5-7 p.m. on the Library Quad. Student representatives from dozens of Eastern clubs and organizations staffed tables to recruit the hundreds of prospective members who attended the event.

The Fall Student Activities Fair provides new and returning students an opportunity to further explore their interests. Eastern clubs and organizations focus on a variety of student interests such as academic, art and music, club sports, cultural, government, leadership and service, media, recreation, religious and special interests.

Organization for Latin American Students (OLAS) President Freddy Cruz shared the goals of the organization. “OLAS provides a family for students and a support system out of class,” said Cruz. “We want to promote Latin American culture, reach out to our local community and have fun.”

Black Student Union

Black Student Union

Black Student Union President Morgane Russell expressed similar hopes for the current academic year: “Our goal is to provide a safe space for black students and all students of color and to promote unity and diversity on campus.”

 FEMALES (“Females Excelling and Maturing to Achieve Leadership," Excellence and Success”

FEMALES (“Females Excelling and Maturing to Achieve Leadership,” Excellence and Success”

Drama Society student representatives were also present at the event to recruit students. “As an organization we fund shows for the Theatre Department, put on our own independent shows and hold staged readings,” said senior theatre major and Drama Society President Emily John. “Our organization provides a collaborative learning experience for all students regardless of major. Keeping our group open to non-theatre majors is important because it enriches us as a group and enriches our art.”

Student leadership organizations “Men Achieving Leadership, Excellence and Success” (MALES) and “Females Excelling and Maturing to Achieve Leadership, Excellence and Success” (FEMALES) were also present at the fair. “Self-growth is our motto. We want to create a positive circle that uplifts students and helps them to be the best version of themselves,” said senior finance major and MALES President Kendrick Constant. FEMALES shared similar goals and objectives for the current academic year: “Community service and involvement is the cornerstone of FEMALES,” said junior history major and Secretary Kiana Veamon. “We want to get to know students and give them a sense of community and support to help them reach their full potential.”

BioChemistry Club

BioChemistry Club

Several academic organizations were also present at the activities fair, including the Biochemistry Club. “Our goal is to promote scientific collaboration, undergraduate research opportunities, career exploration and help first-year students adjust through study groups for Biology and Chemistry classes,” said sophomore biochemistry major and Vice President Crystal Vicente.

With more than 100 clubs and organizations at the fair, there was something for everyone.

 

Eastern Named a ‘Great College to Work For’ for Eighth Time

Written by Michael Rouleau

2013GCWF_4CsingularWILLIMANTIC, CT (07/17/2017) Eastern Connecticut State University has again been named a “Great College to Work For” by The Chronicle of Higher Education, a top trade publication for colleges and universities. Released today by The Chronicle, the results are based on a survey of 232 colleges and universities. This is the eighth time Eastern has received “Great Colleges” distinction since it first began participating in the program in 2009.

Only 79 of the institutions that applied for the program achieved “Great College to Work For” recognition this year. Eastern was also named to the national Great Colleges “Honor Roll,” one of only 42 institutions named to this exclusive club. This is the third year in a row that Eastern has been named to the honor roll. Eastern was also the only public four-year university or college in New England to gain “Great Colleges” distinction.

The Chronicle’s Great Colleges to Work For survey is the largest and most comprehensive workplace study in higher education. Now in its 10th year, it recognizes the colleges that get top ratings from their employees on workforce practices and policies.

The survey results are based on a two-part assessment process: an institutional audit that captured demographics and workplace policies, and a survey administered to faculty, administrators, and professional support staff. The primary factor in deciding whether an institution received recognition was employee feedback.

Eastern won honors in six survey categories this year: Collaborative Governance; Compensation and Benefits; Facilities, Workspaces, and Security; Confidence in Senior Leadership; Teaching Environment; and Tenure Clarity and Process.

“It is gratifying to know that our employees continue to value the positive working atmosphere we share on our campus,” said Eastern President Elsa Núñez. “The ‘Great Colleges to Work For’ recognition is not only a symbol of the common purpose found among our faculty and staff, it represents the welcoming and supportive environment that our students experience every day.

“To know that Eastern has consistently received this honor – winning ‘Great Colleges’ recognition in each of the eight years we have participated – is an indication that our commitment to campus unity is an enduring value firmly embedded in our culture.”

“Ten years in, the ‘Great Colleges to Work For’ distinction is well-known by academic jobseekers as a sign that an institution’s employees are valued and given opportunities for growth even when they face financial constraints,” said Liz McMillen, editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education. “Any college or university that’s on the list is showing that they emphasize one of their most valuable assets: their faculty and staff.”

To administer the survey and analyze the results, The Chronicle worked with ModernThink LLC, a strategic human capital consulting firm that has conducted numerous “Best Places to Work” programs, surveying hundreds of thousands of employees nationwide. “It’s easier to be a great workplace during good times, but it’s when times are tough that the commitment to workplace quality really gets tested,” said Richard K. Boyer, principal and managing partner of ModernThink LLC. “Those institutions that measure up during times of economic hardship reinforce their already strong cultures and put even more distance between them and their peer institutions for whom they compete for talent.”

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About Eastern Connecticut State University

Eastern Connecticut State University is the state of Connecticut’s public liberal arts university, serving more than 5,300 students annually at its Willimantic campus and satellite locations. In addition to attracting students from 163 of Connecticut’s 169 towns, Eastern also draws students from 23 other states and 20 other countries. A residential campus offering 39 majors and 64 minors, Eastern offers students a strong liberal art foundation grounded in an array of applied learning opportunities. Ranked the 26th top public university in the North Region by U.S. News and World Report in its 2017 Best College ratings, Eastern has also been awarded “Green Campus” status by the U.S. Green Building Council seven years in a row. For more information, visit www.easternct.edu.

About The Chronicle of Higher Education

The Chronicle of Higher Education is dedicated to serving the higher-education community with insights, understanding, and intellectual engagement. Academic leaders and professionals from around the world trust The Chronicle’s analysis and in-depth exploration to make informed decisions.

About ModernThink LLC

As a research and consulting leader in workplace issues, ModernThink has supported a wide variety of “Best Place to Work” initiatives. Through these programs, the firm has gained substantial survey and industry expertise, including specific insight into higher education. ModernThink knows what it takes to build a great place to work and shares that know-how with its clients. The ModernThink team of organizational development experts is dedicated to helping colleges follow through and capitalize on feedback from employees and benchmark data from peers to drive meaningful change at their institutions. Learn more at http://www.modernthink.com.

View Online: http://easternct.meritpages.com/news/eastern-named-a–great-college-to-work-for–for-eighth-time/691

Former Washington Post Publisher Addresses Eastern Graduates

Written by Ed Osborn

                                                     Eastern Graduates 1,238 at XL Center

David Graham

David Graham

Hartford, CT — Former Washington Post Publisher Donald Graham told the graduates at Eastern Connecticut State University’s 127th Commencement exercises to “treasure this college. Eastern has given you a wonderful education . . . once you are making a living, give something back so that you can help Eastern continue to be great in the future.”

The annual graduation ceremony was held at the XL Center in Hartford on May 17, with more than 12,000 family members and friends cheering on their sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, as 1,180 undergraduates and 58 graduate students received their diplomas.

Graham also told the graduates, “Throughout our history, American leaders have stood up in times of peril — during the American Revolution, during the Civil War, confronting Hitler, standing up to Communism, and advancing civil and women’s rights.  At some time in your life, you will be asked to stand up for what is right, and I know you will answer the call.” Noting that the American political system has worked very well for more than 200 years, Graham said, “Future politicians will say, ‘I will fight for you.’  That’s fine. But ask them, ‘What will you do when you are done fighting?’”

Commencement 2017 Crowd_7167The commencement speaker also received an honorary degree from Eastern in a special hooding ceremony during the graduation exercises. Graham is chairman of Graham Holdings Co., formerly the Washington Post Co. A graduate of Harvard College, he is a veteran of the Vietnam War, serving as an information specialist with the First Cavalry Division from 1967-68.  He later served as a patrolman on the Washington, D.C., police force before joining the staff at the Washington Post in 1971 as a reporter.  Graham assumed the position of publisher of the Washington Post in 1979, following in the footsteps of his mother, Katherine Graham, who led the newspaper following her husband Philip Graham’s passing in 1963. In 1991, Donald Graham took over leadership as chief executive officer of the Washington Post Co.

Commencement 2017 Nunez and BabyIn 2013, Graham and his wife, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Amanda Bennett, joined Carlos Gutierrez, former U.S. Secretary of Commerce, and Henry R. Munoz III, chairman of Munoz & Company, to co-found TheDream.US, a national scholarship fund that helps undocumented immigrant youth get access to a college education. Since its founding, TheDream.US has raised $91 million in scholarship funds, providing financial support to 1,700 college students nationwide. Graham also co-founded and served as chairman of the District of Columbia College Access Program; he remains a member of the board.  The program has helped double the number of District of Columbia public high school students going on to college and has helped triple the number graduating from college.

Commencement 2017 Nunez Shakes HandOther speakers at the Commencement Exercises included Eastern President Elsa Nunez; Matt Fleury, chair of the Board of Regents for Higher Education; Mark Ojakian, president of the Connecticut State Colleges and University System; and Senior Class President Abigail Caselli, who delivered the Senior Class Address. Other members of the platform party included Willimantic Mayor Ernie Eldridge; Justin Murphy ’98, president of the ECSU Foundation; Ellen Lang ’81, president of the ECSU Alumni Association; Father Larry LaPointe; and other Eastern officials.

Commencement 2017 BEST BalloonNunez told the graduates she was confident they would impact the world in three ways,  first as professionals in the workforce, equipped with “. . . a highly desired set of skills” sought by the majority of American employers — “analytical thinking, teamwork and communication skills, the broad intellectual and social competencies available through a liberal arts education.” Nunez also urged the graduates to give back to their communities, quoting Children’s Defense Fund founder Marian Wright Edelman, who once said, “Service is the rent we pay for being. It is the very purpose of life, and not something you do in your spare time.”

Waving BESTLastly, Nunez encouraged the Eastern seniors to “. . . exercise your duties and rights as American citizens. Our nation remains a beacon of freedom and a guiding light for other nations to follow, not because of our military might or our economic power, but because of the political, religious and personal freedoms we enjoy.”

Commencement 2017 Four LadiesNoting those freedoms must be protected, Eastern’s president went on to say, “Being a citizen of this great nation is clearly an investment of time, but it is the only way we can protect the freedoms we hold dear. Never abdicate your responsibilities as a citizen to someone else.  Be willing to question the status quo.  And stand up for the values you believe in.”

Commencement 2017 FamiliesMore than 40 percent of the graduates were the first in their families to earn a bachelor’s degree. As Connecticut’s only public liberal arts university, Eastern draws students from 163 of the state’s 169 towns. Approximately 85 percent of graduates stay in Connecticut to launch their careers, contribute to their communities and raise their families.

Commencement 2017 Student PresidentSenior Class President Abigail Caselli presented the Senior Class Gift to President Nunez — an annual Class of 2017 scholarship — and thanked her classmates’ families, friends and faculty for supporting the senior class in its journey. “To a room filled with the next great doctors, nurses, actors and actresses, genetic counselors, presidents of universities, human resource managers and professors, just to name a few of the success stories to be written about my fellow graduates, I encourage you to use the opportunities that Eastern has given you and make the world around you better.  As someone once said, ‘Service is the highest form of leadership.’ May each of you find and share that leadership within you.”

Matt Fleury, president and CEO of the Connecticut Science Center, spoke on behalf of the Board of Regents for Higher Education. “Today is a significant milestone for you,” he said. “We are proud of your accomplishments and applaud the many sacrifices you have made to get here. Your journey to this point was not easy, but for that reason, it is so much more satisfying. Whatever path you have chosen, you can make a difference.”Commencement 2017 SelfiesMark Ojakian, president of the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities System, also spoke to the graduates. “You have come a very long way since the first day you arrived at Eastern,” said Ojakian. “Life will take you in many different directions after you leave here tonight. The road in front of you is undefined. But I am hopeful that our state and our nation will be in a better place — as you become your future.”Commencement 2017 Christina

Commencement 2017 Foot GuardFrom the Governor’s Foot Guard Color Guard in attendance, to the plaintive sound of the bagpipes of the St. Patrick’s Pipe Band and the pre-event music of the Thread City Brass Quintet, this year’s graduation ceremonies again reflected Eastern’s Commencement traditions.

Commencemetn 2017 SingersUniversity Senate President Maryanne Clifford presided over the commencement exercises; seniors Abigail Perreira and Kristin Uschkureit sang “America the Beautiful”; Senior Leigha Grushkin gave the invocation; and Environmental Earth Science Professor Peter Drzewiecki was recognized as the 2017 Distinguished Professor Award recipient.

Eastern’s Stephen Nelson Recognized for Excellence in Rugby Community

Stephen Nelson, director of information technology and IT planning at Eastern

Stephen Nelson, director of information technology and IT planning at Eastern

Written by Christina Rossomando

Willimantic, CT — Stephen Nelson, director of information technology and IT planning at Eastern Connecticut State University, received the Dr. Robert L. Laurence Award for 2017 for his work as the advisor for the club rugby team.

Ray Aramini, assistant rugby coach, nominated Nelson for the award presented by the New England Rugby Football Union (NERFU). Eastern was one of 53 NERFU teams to be eligible for the award, which is considered to be the highest recognition New England Rugby gives to an individual. “Stephen Nelson was chosen for this award because of his excellence,” said Aramini. “He goes above and beyond to help our program; he’s always running around to make sure everything is set and helping alongside the team. When we needed to build a playscape for students with disabilities, he was right there helping. This award is only a tiny reflection of all that he does.”

Eastern’s rugby program has formed a strong reputation on and off the field. “Receiving this award I am hopeful that the team’s reputation will continue to excel both locally as well as in the bigger rugby community,” said Nelson. “Our program is respected throughout the NERFU and the national small college rugby organization because of our coaching staff’s strong leadership and respect for the players.”

Nelson joined the rugby community as an advisor, but his involvement is must greater than that. Within the last couple of years, the program won the fall 2015 New England championships and represented the region at the national championships in Colorado in April 2016 as well as worked on several community service projects to raise money.  “It’s wonderful to have a winning season on the field,” said Nelson. “But, the club’s involvement in the local community off the field is what I am most honored to be a part of.”

The Dr. Robert L. Laurence Award was introduced to New England Football Union (NERFU) in 1999 by former Executive Director of Colleges Christopher Fauske. Fauske’s desire was to have the union acknowledge a college administrator for their support of rugby in New England and to help build relationships between the colleges and the union. Nelson received the award for outstanding excellence in the rugby community throughout New England.

Eastern Took the Plunge for Hunger

Written by Christine Rossomando

Plunge 1Hundreds of people, including members of the Eastern Connecticut State University campus community, took a dive into the cold waters of the Natchaug River on Feb. 4 to raise money for the Covenant Soup Kitchen. Many participants dressed in costumes as they stood on the river banks in 30 degree weather.

Plunge 2Eastern’s men’s club rugby team plays a big part in the plunge each year, making sure everyone is registered and all the logistics are set. “I am constantly humbled by what a group of young motivated people can do,” said volunteer coach Ray Aramini. “Being on the board for the soup kitchen for many years, you really see how much this fundraiser changes how we do things and how many individuals we can really feed.”

plunge 3

Rugby participants included current students and alumni. “This year alone we had 25 alumni and about 40 current players,” said Armani. The fundraiser will continue until mid-March and individuals can contribute to the plunge by making a pledge online or by mail to the soup kitchen.

Six years ago, the plunge was created to support Nick Fitzner and Patrick Scully’s Ride for Hunger, an event to raise money for the soup kitchen and the Connecticut Food Bank. Fitzner and Scully rode their bikes from Washington D.C to Willimantic during their spring break.

Eastern Wraps Up University Hours for October

From left to right: Eastern students James Dignoti representing Trump, Francesco Ricigliano representing Gary Johnson, moderator Harrison Brooks, Allison Kazlauskus representing Hillary Clinton and Josh Newhall representing Jill Stein.

From left to right: Eastern students James Dignoti representing Trump, Francesco Ricigliano representing Gary Johnson, moderator Harrison Brooks, Allison Kazlauskus representing Hillary Clinton and Josh Newhall representing Jill Stein.

Willimantic, Conn.— Eastern Connecticut State University’s University Hour series brought a number of interesting speakers to campus in October.

On Oct. 5, the Student Government Association hosted a mock debate with four current Eastern students representing the four presidential candidates; the event was moderated by SGA President Harrison Brooks. President for the College Democrats of Connecticut Allison Kazluskas represented Hillary Clinton. SGA Secretary James Dignoti represented Donald Trump. SGA Student Issues Committee Chair Francesco Ricigliano represented Gary Johnson, and political science honor student Josh Newhall represented Jill Stein.

“While we all hold different ideological and partisan views, we did not want the debate to become a shouting match like presidential debates often are. We aimed to present each candidate’s platforms in a way that could educate our audience and help them to better understand the candidates,” said Newhall.

“Practice and personal experience kept me comfortable up there. I do not have any immediate future plans to debate, but I would like to run for office in the future so I may be debating at some point,” said Kazluskas.

Lopez discusses electoral votes of 1963 .

Lopez discusses electoral votes of 1963 .

On Oct. 12, speaker Ian Haney Lopez, a constitutional law scholar and law professor at University of California-Berkeley, shared his research on the connection between racial division and growing wealth inequality in the United States during his lecture “Dog Whistle Politics: Race and Economic Jeopardy for All.”

“The Dog whistle is a metaphor for speech that operates on two levels. Silent on one level, but triggering strong reaction on the other,” said Lopez. “So if you think about terms like illegal alien, inner city, silent majority or middle class, all of these are silent on one level about race. None of them directly mention race and yet all of them trigger strong racial reactions.”

Eastern alumnus Jon DeCasanova answers questions about his battle with cancer.

Eastern alumnus Jon DeCasanova answers questions about his battle with cancer.

On Oct. 19, former Eastern men’s soccer player Jon DeCasanova shared his story about his battle with aplastic anemia, which he had less than a one percent chance of beating. Following the showing of “The Story of Jon DeCasanova: A True Warrior”—the short documentary about his battle—DeCasanova answered questions.

“Mentality was the biggest challenge of this. There was one thing I was known for during my sickness and that was optimism. I was just the happiest kid in the world for some reason although I was in the hospital. The weird thing is that I wasn’t that way all the time. I was just wired to be optimistic. Do I think that I am wired to in some way always be optimistic, yes, but it’s something I’ve worked on for a long time,” said DeCasanova.

“I had so many things going for me. I was a dean’s list student, I was the captain of the soccer team, I had great friends and great family, nothing was bad in my life. I honestly can’t think of something I wish I could change. For this to happen, especially at the age of 20, it was just absolutely insane and ridiculous not only for me but for my friends and family to deal with,” said DeCasanova.

DeCasanova has been cancer—free for more than two years. He has been spending time as a motivational speaker at high schools and colleges in New England to try and inspire students and help them with the struggles of everyday life.

Mental Health on Focus at “Fresh Check Day”

Written by Michael Rouleau

Students relax during a gong meditation session.

Students relax during a gong meditation session.

Willimantic, CT — In an effort to raise suicide awareness and prevention, Eastern Connecticut State University hosted Fresh Check Day on Oct. 13. A signature program of the Jordan Porco Foundation, Fresh Check Day involves students in interactive booths that deliver mental health and resource information in a fun and engaging way.

A student paints a plant pot at the “Seeds of Hope” booth.

A student paints a plant pot at the “Seeds of Hope” booth.

The Jordan Porco Foundation was founded in 2011 by Ernie and Marisa Porco after they lost their son, Jordan, to suicide when he was a freshman in college. “For students with emerging mental health problems, the transition from high school to college can cause a lot of stress and anxiety,” said Sandra Rose-Zak, Eastern’s wellness promotion coordinator. “This event is really about developing resiliency and coping strategies and recognizing that you are not in this alone, and that there are a lot of resources and support available.”

Fresh Check Day utilizes a peer-to-peer messaging model. “We’ve recognized that these messages are better said and received by peers,” said Rose-Zak. “When speaking to someone with a similar experience, you have a greater interest in what they’re saying. It’s a different impact when coming from peers.”

Fourteen student organizations — ranging from athletic teams to the Pride Alliance to the Student Government Association — staffed booths designed to inspire and educate those through tough times and about health resources.

A student pets a therapy dog.

A student pets a therapy dog.

The Visual Arts Club led a “web of connectivity,” where students used one continuous strand of yarn to circle pegs on a board that represented different secrets or life challenges. Examples included “I feel alone,” “I’m a perfectionist,” “I have an eating disorder” or “I learn differently.” One student noted that the continuous strand further demonstrates that we’re all connected.

Other activities included planting “seeds of hope” and potting plants; writing “uplifting messages in a bottle”; and the “9 out of 10” booth, which explained that one out of 10 college students contemplates suicide, leaving nine to help the one.

A student adds an uplifting message to a sand-filled bottle.

A student adds an uplifting message to a sand-filled bottle.

Also present was The Conduit Center, which led reclined meditation sessions; Mansfield Massage, LLC; and Cold Noses Warm Hearts, a nonprofit that brought three therapy dogs to campus.

Preparation for Fresh Check Day began last year with the recruitment and training of student volunteers. “All our groups were versed in where the resources are on campus,” said Rose-Zak, “so if someone should say, ‘I have bulimia, is there a support group on campus?’ all of our groups know where to point that student.”

In 2012, Eastern was the first college campus to host Fresh Check Day, which has since expanded across the country. The Hartford-based Jordan Porco Foundation is committed to preventing suicide in the high school, college and college entry student population by building a bridge between students and local mental health resources and programs.

The Courant Names Eastern a 2016 Top Workplace

Written by Michael Rouleau

Top Places LogoWillimantic, CT — For the fifth time in the past six years, the Hartford Courant has recognized Eastern Connecticut State University in its “Top Workplaces” survey. With 961 employees, Eastern ranked fourth in the “large” category, and was the only higher education institution to be recognized among 61 organizations in Hartford, Middlesex, Tolland, Windham and New London counties. Results were published on Sept. 18 in the Hartford Courant.

Surveys were administered on behalf of the Courant by WorkplaceDynamics LLP, a research and consulting firm that has compiled top employer lists for some of the nation’s largest media outlets. Rankings were based on confidential survey results completed by employees of the participating organizations.
The survey included 24 statements, with employees asked to assess each one on a scale from “strongly agree” to “strongly disagree.” Topics included organizational direction, workplace conditions, effectiveness, managers and compensation. Each company was assigned a score based on a formula.
Survey statements included: “This company operates by strong values and ethics”; “I have confidence in the leader of this company”; “I have the flexibility I need to balance my work and personal life”; for example.

“We are honored to be recognized as a top workplace in Connecticut,” said Eastern President Elsa Núñez. “While Eastern was recognized in the large organization category, our campus has always prided itself on its sense of community and for being a welcoming, inclusive environment for students, their families and the community-at-large. This announcement is a wonderful reminder that Eastern is a great workplace for our faculty and staff and I am delighted that we were among those recognized.”

Eastern Jumps Seven Places in U.S. News and World Report Rankings

Written by Ed Osborn
US News and World Report-FlagsEastern Connecticut State University moved up seven places among regional universities in the North in this year’s U.S. News and World Report’s 2017 edition of “Best Colleges” to 85th overall; Eastern was also tied for 26th place among public universities on the list. The annual rankings were released on Sept. 13.

Eastern was the highest ranked university among the four Connecticut state universities, and this year’s ranking was Eastern’s best ever.

Regional universities such as Eastern are ranked on the basis of 16 criteria that include peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, admissions selectivity, financial resources and alumni giving. The North Region includes colleges and universities from New England, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland.

US News and World Report-Campus Scene“I am gratified to see Eastern achieve its highest ranking ever in this year’s U.S. News and World Report’s 2017 Best Colleges report,” said Eastern President Elsa Nunez. “Our commitment to academic excellence, our focus on student engagement and the introduction of new majors have resulted in strong scores for such criteria as academic reputation, student selectivity, faculty resources and alumni giving. Students and their families turn to the Best Colleges rankings to help decide where to attend college.  These new rankings reaffirm that Eastern is providing a quality, affordable liberal arts education on our beautiful residential campus.”
US News and World Report- Residential Halls ExteriorThis year’s U.S. News and World Report rankings included reviews of 1,374 schools nationwide and are available at www.usnews.com/colleges. They will also be published in the Best Colleges 2017 Guidebook, published by U.S. News & World Report and available on newsstands on Oct. 4.