3 Questions for ...

Paula Russo
Vice President of Planning, Administration & Affirmative Action

1) As vice president of planning, what is your vision for what Trinity will look like at 200 years old in 2023?

I would hope to come back in 2023 and see a Trinity College that has a clear sense of its mission and is proud of it. In real terms that might manifest itself in a variety of ways:

  • The College would have a coherent curriculum that reflected its core values and mission.

  • The academic programs, particularly in the arts and sciences, would be flourishing.

  • I would hope to see a college whose generous financial policy has resulted in a completely diverse student body.

  • I would see more students comfortable walking outside the College boundaries, whether it be over to the Learning Corridor to work with the students there or down to Park Street or Franklin Avenue for a bite to eat.

  • Virtually all students would seek out opportunities to study about and in the city of Hartford.

  • Faculty and students would be seen hanging out on benches and on the grass engaged in exciting, sometimes heated, intellectual discussions.

  • Every member of the Trinity College community would feel valued and respected.

2) What do you miss most since moving from the faculty to the administration?

I really miss interacting with students on a regular basis. After all, they are the reason we are all here. I particularly miss getting to know the first-year students. During my years at Trinity, I always enjoyed teaching students during their first semester on campus. They are delightful in their enthusiasm and eagerness to explore what the College has to offer. I hope to be able to manage my schedule so that I can teach a first-year course next year.

3) If you were granted three wishes for Trinity, without budget or personnel constraints, what would they be?

  • That the College realize its potential and take full advantage of all the wonderful things it can offer its students and the community.

  • That it could adopt a truly need-blind admissions policy.

  • That it could develop a more challenging, coherent, and distinctive curriculum.

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What they’re reading



Chris Card
Associate Dean of Students


The Rules of Seduction—that was the title that grabbed my attention in a cramped bookstore in Burlington, Vermont. It was Daniel Magida’s first novel and it proved to be an engaging piece of fiction. In it, we follow Jack Newland, a charming young man of distinct privilege, and his struggle to stay within those social boundaries that high society has placed on its own. For those of us who weren’t born with the proverbial silver spoon in our mouths, we can travel vicariously into the lives of the rich and socially mobile: tales of trust funds and elite boarding schools, life in elaborate Manhattan apartments with jaunts to the weekend mansion in the country (Connecticut), black-tie fundraisers for the arts, and always being “on the list” and in the most exclusive club. And every once in a while, we get some tantalizing gossip of decadence and deviance…

Predictably, The Rules of Seduction turns to affairs of the heart as we watch Jack struggle with a difficult choice: does he play by the rules or follow his heart? And while predictable in certain parts, Jack Newland exposes for us the mysterious patterns of the wealthy. Here is perhaps the most compelling aspect of this novel—that it commands an examination into how class and status impact the human spirit! Even though history will never deem The Rules of Seduction to be any literary masterpiece, it is nonetheless an engaging, witty, and entertaining story that’s well worth reading. An added bonus: Trinity is mentioned in the book!

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