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Prof. Martha Belden to Retire

Prof. Martha Belden

After 36 years of employment with Cambridge College, Prof. Martha Belden will be retiring, effective February 1, 2015. This is a well-deserved retirement, and we congratulate her on this achievement. 

Prof. Belden previously served in several capacities at the College including Coordinator of Student Special Services, Assistant Vice President, Assistant Director of Enrollment Services, and Acting Director of Enrollment Services.  She earned a Juris Doctorate from Western New England College Law School, a Master of Social Work and a Bachelor of Arts from Boston University.  She has had the opportunity to teach in three of the College’s locations – Northampton, Springfield and the Main Campus.  She has taught in several programs at the College including Graduate Studies Preparation, Academic Preparation, Education and Management.  She also co-directed the College’s Center for Conflict Transformation during its active years and has been an officer in the faculty union as well as a member of its negotiation team. Over these many years, she has been involved in the College’s marketing, publications, preparation for NEASC accreditation visits, policy development, governance, student services and student recruitment/admissions.

She is currently a Core/Full-time faculty member in the School of Management, having returned to this role after her administrative duties ended.  Her commitment to teaching and to her students has resulted in the development of a group of graduate students who, as a result of what they have learned from her courses, leave the College better prepared to be successful managers, professionals, community members and people. She frequently receives feedback from her students commenting on the value of having learned from her. Her students gain knowledge, respect for differences, practical skills, pride in participating in their learning process, enhanced self-esteem and a personal relationship that, for many, lasts beyond commencement. Prof. Belden’s involvement with and impact upon her students is her strength and major contribution as a member of the Cambridge College community.  She has taught “to the model” and prides herself on being a faculty member who actually understands the College’s teaching and learning model as it was originally conceived.  Testimonials from students support all that she believes about her teaching abilities.

In the School of Management, Prof. Belden has enhanced the faculty group’s effectiveness as a team. She has contributed to the recruitment and marketing efforts of the School of Management and the College by creating and presenting workshops to potential students as well as the community at large.  The content of these workshops not only drew a large audience of interested non-Cambridge College community members to the College’s teaching and learning model, but furthered the cause of helping people learn to deal with conflict in a more effective way.  She was instrumental in maintaining the high quality of the School of Management’s concentration in Business Negotiation and Conflict Management.  Through the use of her group management skills, she helped develop the School of Management faculty into a team.  Members of the faculty function collaboratively to design and implement changes necessary to bring the School’s offerings into alignment with the identified needs of its existing and new markets.

For the College Senate, Prof. Belden has served as Co-Chair of the Marketing, Student Services and Retention Committee.  In an effort to support and improve the functioning of the larger organization of the College, she participated, as a non-Senate member, in the Senate’s By Laws Committee.  She provided an important “objective” perspective as a person who was not influenced by the existing functioning and history of the Senate. As a member of the Marketing, Student Services and Retention committee, she found that her skills in group dynamics and running effective meetings were necessary and welcomed. 

We wish Prof. Belden an enjoyable and healthy retirement. She will certainly be missed by the College community.