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Spring Celebration a Bee-autiful Event!
Dr. Tom Seeley and Mary Opperman celebrate Cornell retirees at the Spring Celebration.
Retirees enjoyed a chance to catch up and socialize at the event.
Beautiful morning sunlight ushered over 160 retirees and their guests into the Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine’s Center Takoda's Run Atrium on June 15, 2019. The Spring Celebration, themed “Honey Bees and Retirees,” honored retirees from all areas of Cornell, both new and established. It was a special welcome home for CVM retirees, and a chance to see all of the changes the space has undergone in recent years. Catching up with fellow retirees is always a highlight for some – “I saw a co-worker I haven’t seen in YEARS! It was so nice see what they are up to,” noted one retiree.

Retirees welcomed Dr. Tom Seeley, renowned bee expert and biologist, and VP and CHRO Mary Opperman for breakfast. Breakfast was followed by a special lecture by Dr. Seeley. Seeley, who recently released his newest book in May, was introduced by Opperman, who reiterated Michelle Artibee’s welcoming remarks – lauding the value and wisdom that Cornell retirees bring. Special thanks were given to all the volunteers that helped make the day possible.

Goody bags were shared with each retiree and guest, containing a handmade beeswax candle, a sustainable food wrap and honey sticks, donated by Cornell Academics and Professors Emeriti inside.

Stay tuned for more information on the upcoming Annual George Peter BBQ this fall!
Cornell Retirement Plans
Article Series (4-part)
Installment Two: Retirement Plan Operations
and Oversight

In 2011, the Cornell Board of Trustees created the Retirement Plan Oversight Committee (RPOC), with the Vice President of Human Resources appointed as its permanent chair. RPOC has members from various schools and departments across campus. The Board of Trustees delegated authority to RPOC to provide policy oversight of CURP and TDA (described in Installment One), as well as Weill Medical College retirement plans. The SUNY ORP and the NYSERS (described in Installment One) are not part of the oversight responsibilities of RPOC, because they are not Cornell-sponsored plans.
CURP and TDA allow participants to direct the allocation of their own retirement account among various investment options. The plans’ investment menu is structured in accordance with contemporary investment theory, which means that the plans offer a set of diversified investment options that represent a broad range of different asset classes with different risk and return characteristics.
Part of RPOC’s role is to select and monitor the investments available to participants. To better carry out this duty, RPOC developed a document called an Investment Policy Statement (IPS). The IPS was designed to provide meaningful direction and guidance to RPOC as it selects and monitors investments available in the plans. The IPS sets out guidelines for RPOC on asset classes, investment selection, investment evaluation, and replacement of investment alternatives when necessary or desirable. You can find the full IPS on the HR website under the Benefits tab.

In carrying out its work, RPOC is advised by an outside investment analysis and consulting firm, CAPTRUST. CAPTRUST provides expert market analysis and education at RPOC meetings. CAPTRUST also assists with the selection, performance reviews, and monitoring of all investment funds available in the plans. You may recall that in 2012, an entire new line-up of funds was introduced in the plans. The analysis and selection of this line-up was the result of the collaborative effort between RPOC and CAPTRUST. The line-up is now regularly reviewed using procedures laid out in the IPS, with RPOC and CAPTRUST making changes to options when needed. You may have noticed one recent example described in a notice from TIAA advising their clients that Cornell has changed a number of investment fund options, with an approximate implementation date of June 14th.
This collaborative effort between RPOC and CAPTRUST will continue into the future to assure employees, retirees and their families that the investment menu offered in the plans provides a robust opportunity to invest their retirement savings. 
The retired Senior Director of Benefits Services and Administration and the author of this article, Paul Bursic, is the retiree representative on RPOC. You can reach Paul at if you have any questions or comments for RPOC. 

If you have questions after reading this article and/or the next one, please submit them to us at Questions that may be beneficial for others to know the answers to may be featured in the August article!
Retiree Engagement Survey Winners
We are excited to announce that over 850 Cornell retirees completed the first Cornell Retiree Engagement Survey! Thank you to everyone who responded! 

The survey is currently being analyzed by the HR Analytics team and we were delighted to see so many retirees involved in so many interesting activities! We will be sharing highlights with you in the future.

Congratulations to the Amazon gift card drawing winners (winners have been notified by email): 
  • Kathleen D.
  • Charles M.
  • Jon H.
  • Fred S.
  • Dorothy F.
Retiree Representative Needed for Employee Assembly!  
A Retired Cornell staff member is still needed to represent the retiree community on the  Employee Assembly (EA). The EA advocates for staff interests and identifies concerns, working with the university administration and other key stakeholders to seek solutions. This is a rewarding and informative way to be involved in decisions that shape the future of Cornell University staff and retirees.
The retiree seat is shared by two volunteers in staggered terms to reduce the overall time commitment and provide continuity.
To learn more contact Hurf Sheldon ( ) or Amy Layton at  or 607-255-0388.
Happening on Campus
Paa Kow Concert
Friday, June 28, 2019 at 7:00 pm
Cornell University Arts Quad
Dubbed "Ghana's most artistic drummer" ( Modern Ghana), Ghana-born drummer and composer, Paa Kow, (pronounced Pah-Ko) blends rhythm and artistry from his home with jazz and African roots creating his own Afro-Fusion sound.

Touring internationally with his custom Ghanaian drum set and his Afro-Fusion Orchestra,  Paa Kow brings concert goers an extraordinary musical experience filled with deep grooves and incredible beats.  Paa Kow has shared stages with many African and American luminaries including Kojo Antwi, Amakye Dede and Victor Wooten.

Concert is free. Rain location is Rhodes-Rawlings Auditorium, Klarman Hall.
Maddy Walsh & The Blind Spots
Friday, July 5, 2019 at 7:00 pm
Cornell University Arts Quad
The Blind Spots return to Ithaca this summer following a national tour supporting their fourth studio album, "Talk." The tenured, five-piece moxy-rock band steered by the magnetic Maddy Walsh (think Heart, think Adele, Blondie, and Joan Jett all rolled into one) are sure to bring a high-energy performance to Cornell's Summer Event Series with original tunes and an incessant penchant for fun.

The Blind Spots have shared bills with Lake Street Dive, Silversun Pickups, Valerie June, Amy Helm, Rubblebucket, Donna the Buffalo, Sharon Jones, The Punch Brothers, and many others. 

This concert is free.
Cornell Adult University Summer Classes Start July 7th
Cornell’s Adult University lets adults return to the classroom to engage with some of Cornell’s most gifted faculty, without the stress of tests or homework. Our seminars and workshops offer a variety of summer fun and learning for all.

Classes begin July 7, 2019 - see below for a few classes of interest:

Taking Flight: An Introduction to the World of Birds with Kyle Hortov
Comprising 220 acres of woods, marshes, and ponds, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology's Sapsucker Woods Sanctuary is a national treasure. On early morning excursions there, we'll study the color and song, habits, and habitats of a wealth of birds, from the tiny Ruby-Throated Hummingbird to the Pileated Woodpecker.

Our amazing guide, Kyle Horton, a Rose Postdoctoral Fellow at the Lab of Ornithology, will lead us during bird walks, seminars, hands-on activities such as banding, and an excursion to the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge. Come explore avian biology and learn what makes birds so fascinating.

The Harried Gourmet: Tasty Meals in an Hour or Less with David D'Aprix
Cooking can feel a drudgery and daily shopping impossible, but don't throw in the dish towel yet! In this popular course, we'll hone meal preparation skills, create fifteen- to sixty-minute menus for delicious repasts, and learn to execute them beautifully.

Guiding us—beginner and experienced chefs alike—will be Dave D'Aprix, Culinary Institute of America graduate, local caterer, and former Cornell Hotel School instructor. Rather than relying exclusively on recipes, David will emphasize cooking techniques and the value of a well-stocked larder for making gourmet dishes with little advanced planning. We'll also visit the Ithaca Farmers Market, where the local and seasonal produce will inspire us on to the next meal.

Bike the Finger Lakes with Rob Cook
Experience the best of the Finger Lakes as you pedal past gorges, waterfalls, farmlands, lakes, and vistas with Cornell Outdoor Education's expert bike leaders. Ride 15 to 30 miles a day with elevation gains of 1,500 feet through quiet back roads and up and down the moderate hills typical of this beautiful terrain.
You need not have competed in the Tour de France, but reasonable physical fitness and biking ease are each a plus. We'll work our way up from moderate to longer rides, and we'll break at a few spots for picnic lunches, hiking, and contemplative awe. We'll also enjoy the support and camaraderie of the group.

For more information and to register, visit , email , or call 607-255-6260.
Events at Cornell Botanic Gardens
Mindful Monday Garden Walks
12:00 to 1:00 pm
Join Cornell Botanic Gardens staff to observe the beauty and drama of nature unfolding on monthly nature walks. While exploring various paths and gardens each month, we will practice mindfulness by dedicating our attention to the present moment and fully observing and appreciating the amazing plant transformations that take place throughout the year. Walks will be held rain or shine on the third Monday of each month, ending October 21st.

Saturday Garden Tours
11:00am to 12:00pm
4:00pm to 5:00pm
Take a relaxing stroll with a Garden Guide through the gardens around the Nevin Welcome Center and discover the beauty and diversity of our cultivated plant collections. Visit the Robison Herb Garden, Young Flower Garden, Bowers Rhododendron Collection, Shady Groundcover Collection, tropical container display, and more. Each tour will be a unique experience, as we observe the gardens’ progression throughout the growing season. Tours are offered every Saturday at 11 am and 4 pm through September 28.
Cornell Recreation Connection NYC Baseball Trip
NY Yankees vs Boston Red Sox
Saturday, August 3, 2019
Travel with Cornell Recreation Connection (CRC) to historic Yankee Stadium to watch one of baseball’s greatest rivalries, as the New York Yankees host the Boston Red Sox in what is sure to be another great baseball match up.
Please note updated game time is now 1:05 pm

Bus will depart from Cornell’s B-Lot at 6:00 am, returning at midnight.
There will be a brief rest stop on the way to NYC. Feel free to bring snacks and beverages with you on the bus. No glass containers, please.

$185 per person includes round trip bus fare and game ticket. Our seating is covered and in section 207, rows 21 and 22. These are great seats. Check out the virtual stadium map.

Besides the game, you will want to visit Monument Park and the Yankees Museum (both on site and included with your game ticket).

Full payment is due at the time of reservation. All tickets are non-refundable.  
Cancer Resource Center
Cancer Center Special Offerings
Men’s Adventure Day
Boating on Cayuga Lake, A modified Floating Classroom Adventure
Friday, June 28, 9:30 – 11:30 am
Open to men who have or have had cancer.
Provided free of charge thanks to support from CFCU.
For more information or to register contact Bob Riter at .
7/16 Living Well with Cancer; Danielle Prince "Toxin Free
Cleaning with Essential Oils - Supporting each other one drop at a time"
5:30 - 7:00 pm at CRCFL
Outside speakers present various health-related topics including wellness and complementary medicine. For people dealing with any stage of cancer & their caregivers.

Please join us! Invite your friends, family and neighbors. Light refreshments provided.
Cancer Support Group at Cornell
Work/Life and the Cancer Resource Center of the Finger Lakes began a monthly support group for members of the Cornell community who have or have had cancer. Meetings are on the second Wednesday of every month, from Noon – 1:00 in Weill Hall, Room 321.
Faculty, staff, students, and retirees who have been diagnosed with cancer are welcome. It’s an opportunity to meet one another, create a community of support, and learn about the resources available on campus and in Ithaca.
The group is facilitated by Monica Vakiner, the Cancer Resource Center’s Director of Client Services ( ). Bob Riter, Patient Advocate for the Physical Sciences Oncology Center, is helping with logistics. ( ). 
Note that this group is not for cancer caregivers. The Cancer Resource Center offers a  caregiver group on the second Tuesday of each month from 5:30 to 7:00 pm at its office (612 West State St.). Work/Life also offers a  Caregiver Support and Education Network that meets monthly on campus.
Additional cancer support groups are available at the Cancer Resource Center and are listed   here .  
Community Events
First Friday Art Night at the Museum Featuring Trisha Koomen
Friday, July 5, 2019, 5:00 - 8:00 pm
Museum of the Earth Gift Shop
1259 Trumansburg Road, Ithaca
Visit the Museum of the Earth's Gift Shop on First Friday Art Night , July 5, 2019, to see the new exhibit of works by Trisha Koomen. The Museum will be open for extended evening hours.

Being outside in nature has always been huge in Trisha Koomen’s life, and from early on, the health of the planet has played large in that experience. As a child she loved to be outdoors in her small town in British Columbia, set near a mountain to climb and much more. Even then, in the 50’s and 60’s, Koomen sensed destructive forces lurking in her father’s use of the term “progress”. Today she continues to marvel at how being outside, in the natural world, affects her in a positive way, and she seeks its company often. The work that Koomen produces reflects the connection that she feels to nature and her concern for its wellbeing.

Light refreshments will be served. Admission to the show in the Museum's Gift Shop is free, special evening admission rates apply to Museum exhibits. The artwork will be on display through the end of July.

While you are there, take the opportunity to enjoy an evening at the Museum of the Earth. We have extended evening hours—the Museum will be open until 8 pm! Admission to the Museum on Friday Art Nights (from 5 to 8 pm) is only $5.00.
2019 Paleontological Research Institution Fossil Collecting Trips
July 6, 2019: Hamilton, NY
August 24, 2019: Cascade, NY
Join us for a trip through time with one of our exciting Fossil Collecting Trips!
Explore the ancient seas of central New York with the help of our expert staff. Search for trilobites, brachiopods, and a myriad of other ocean creatures up to nearly 400 million years old!

PRI provides the necessary tools of the trade, including rock hammers and a fossil identification guide. However, you will want to bring something to store all of the fossils that you find. Trip participants meet at each location, which varies from a 45-minute to 2.5-hour drive from Ithaca.

All the sites are fairly accessible with parking. However, most sites do not have convenient restroom facilities. Make sure you have sun protection and sensible footwear. Dress for sitting on rocks, near scratchy bushes, and getting dirty!
Collecting at each site begins at 11 am and ends at 2 pm. Participants meet at the site.

For more information and to register, visit:

Information about each trip, including directions, will be emailed to participants during the week before the trip. For more information you can contact Rob Ross at 607-273-6623 x118 or via email at .
Employment & Volunteer Opportunities
Drivers Needed for Way2Go
Would you like to help people in our community?  There are not enough volunteer drivers in Tompkins County to meet people’s needs.  Volunteer drivers serve a critical role in helping people live healthy, engaged lives. You could…

  • Drive parents and caregivers to school events, like concerts and teacher meetings
  • Allow relatives to visit loved ones in jail
  • Bring people to social events
  • Help people get to healthcare appointments
  • And much more!

Volunteer drivers use their own car (or, in some cases, a provided vehicle), to pick up and transport local residents who need a ride. Cornell Cooperative Extension Tompkins County is partnering with several local organizations to recruit new drivers in 2019.  Drive only when you want to, for the organization of your choice, with no minimum time commitment.  Training is provided. 

Ready to help?  Contact the Way2Go team at Cornell Cooperative Extension: (607) 272-2292, or visit the Way2Go webpage.
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