Vermonter participates in ISO corporate responsibility conference in Brazil

first_imgBURLINGTON, Vt.–Carolyn Schmidt of Whiting is participating this month in an international conference on corporate responsibility which will take her to Salvador, Brazil. Schmidt is a member of the staff and board of directors of ECOLOGIA, a nonprofit environmental organization based in Middlebury, and an adjunct professor at Champlain College in Burlington.From March 7-11, she will meet with representatives from around the globe to create the first draft of a social responsibility standard for the ISO (International Organization of Standards).The task is to set a framework for the 21st century for how well treat people and the environment, Schmidt said. Whatever the ISO does, it will probably become the global standard.The conference will address two main categories: social responsibility of business, including the treatment of workers around the world, and environmental responsibility, including pollution and sustainable development.The ISO is accepting the concept that corporations are supported by and dependent on people and the environment, Schmidt said. Its a big step forward. I think its an exciting process to be a part of.Schmidt is the board secretary for ECOLOGIA as well as the US project manager for the organizations Virtual Foundation and project director for International Exchange Programs. She is also a member of Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility, which she describes as a tremendous resource for information.A former high school social studies teacher, Schmidt now teaches sociology and interpersonal communication courses at Champlain College. She anticipates that this international experience will provide additional real-world examples to share with her students. Sociology teaches you a different conceptual framework for assessing a situation–its a way of thinking flexibly, she said. She added that strong communications skills will be important at the conference, where she expects to employ the Vermont approach to finding a common ground. ISO is a consensus-based process, she explained.Drafting the corporate responsibility standard for ISO is expected to take three years. Teams from Sweden and Brazil are taking the lead in the project and significant efforts have been made to involve developing countries, which are home to 80 percent of the worlds population, Schmidt said.# # #last_img read more

Summer Storm Series opens at Off Road Speedway

first_imgBy Randy PospishilNORFOLK, Neb. (May 7) – All four of the divisions getting the Summer Storm Dirt Series competi­tion saw the eventual race winner pull away from the pack Saturday at Off Road Speedway.Kyle Prauner pulled away to secure the Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMod win, his second of the season at Norfolk. Ultimately, Dylan Pospisil won what became a three-car race for the runner-up spot, with Nelson Vollbrecht getting third ahead of Troy Bruns.Another runaway winner, Ron Pettitt, needed 10 laps to get to the front in the IMCA Sunoco Stock Car race and then put plenty of distance between himself and second-place finisher John Had­cock during the final six laps. Chasing Hadcock to the finish line was Chad Bruns.Tejay Mielke powered his way to a convincing victory in the IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stock feature, his second in three nights of racing at Off Road Speedway, while Jeremy Hoskinson established a decisive second-place finish ahead of Tiffany Bittner.National points leader Ramsey Meyer won the Mach-1 Sport Compact feature for the second time this season, finishing ahead of Lance Mielke and Brooke Fluckiger.last_img read more

USCIS Expanding Person to Person Interviews

first_imgChange complies with executive orderThe United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin expanding in-person interviews for certain immigration benefit applicants whose benefit, if granted, would allow them to permanently reside in the United States. This change complies with Executive Order 13780, “Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States,” and is part of the agency’s comprehensive strategy to further improve the detection and prevention of fraud and further enhance the integrity of the immigration system.Effective October 1Effective October. 1, USCIS will begin to phase-in interviews for the following:Adjustment of status applications based on employment (Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status).Refugee/asylee relative petitions (Form I-730, Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition) for beneficiaries who are in the United States and are petitioning to join a principal asylee/refugee applicant.Previously, applicants in these categories did not require an in-person interview with USCIS officers in order for their application for permanent residency to be adjudicated. Beyond these categories, USCIS is planning an incremental expansion of interviews to other benefit types.Upholding integrity of immigration system“This change reflects the Administration’s commitment to upholding and strengthening the integrity of our nation’s immigration system,” said Acting USCIS Director James W. McCament. “USCIS and our federal partners are working collaboratively to develop more robust screening and vetting procedures for individuals seeking immigration benefits to reside in the United States.”Conducting in-person interviews will provide USCIS officers with the opportunity to verify the information provided in an individual’s application, to discover new information that may be relevant to the adjudication process, and to determine the credibility of the individual seeking permanent residence in the United States.  USCIS will meet the additional interview requirement through enhancements in training and technology as well as transitions in some aspects of case management.last_img read more

Madden 21 removes all Redskins references, will instead feature ‘generic Washington team’

first_imgAfter featuring the Redskins prominently in promotional packages for “Madden 21” — including a clip of virtual Chase Young rushing the QB in the official trailer — EA Sports announced it would strike the team name and logo entirely from its video game.In place of the Redskins brand, the Aug. 25 release will carry a “generic Washington team” with different logos and jerseys. The Redskins have yet to announce their next name and appearance, so EA Sports will need to take creative liberties in the design process. “We are pleased to see Washington’s decision to change their team name and visual identity,” EA wrote in a statement. “We are quickly working to update Madden NFL 21 to feature a generic Washington team, while we await final word on the updated team name and logo design.”EA Sports has released ratings for “Madden 21” throughout this week, drawing ire from some players for its choices but generally increasing excitement for its upcoming release.Washington, meanwhile, has been rocked by another scandal this week when The Washington Post released a report alleging more than a decade of sexual harassment from top employees toward female workers within the organization. Disc versions of the game, which are already in production, will arrive with Redskins insignia but are expected to be altered via online update.MORE: Timeline of Washington football dysfunctionWashington recently opted to pursue a brand change after outcry over its racially insensitive imagery became a financial liability for owner Dan Snyder, who had previously vowed to never back down from his fight to keep the Redskins name intact. When top sponsors urged the club to alter its name and logo, such a shift was essentially unavoidable.last_img read more