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About the Center

The mission of the Alvord Center for Global & Environmental Studies is to promote global and environmental literacy, sustainability, and engagement.

Alvord Center Faculty

Alec McCandless, Director

phone: 860.687.6298 Email






Alexander (Alec) McCandless, Christopher H. Lutz Director of the Alvord Center for Global & Environmental Studies, is a long time history and social science teacher. With academic and teaching experience in philosophy, classics, government, World and U.S. history, Globalization, Modern Africa, economics, and the history of science, Alec is deeply curious about the world and what makes it tick. An innovative designer of curriculum, Alec has created and taught a student-led course on ethics, U.S. History backwards, a course on the Industrial Revolution and the Model T (including dis- and re- assembly of a genuine Model T engine block, along with Model T driving lessons!), and several other history, as well as interdisciplinary, courses.

Alec began his teaching career at an inter-racial school in a black homeland in Apartheid-era South Africa, has studied in New Zealand, and has traveled extensively in different regions of the world. Whether doing community service work in Haiti, hiking in the mountains or visiting archaeological sites in Greece and Turkey, or studying NATO and the European Union in Brussels, Alec makes a point of learning some of the local language, trying the most unusual foods, and looking for the quickest way off the beaten path. He brings his curiosity and enthusiasm about education, exploration and discovery to his work with the Center, with faculty, and with students.

Alec has a B.A. in Philosophy and Classics from Tufts University, and an M.A. in Liberal Studies, with a focus on history and political science, from the University of Michigan.

Jeff Dyreson, Associate Director

phone: 860.687.6132 Email


Jeff Dyreson
, Director of Environmental/Sustainability Initiatives and Associate Director of the Alvord Center, has been a Loomis Chaffee science faculty member since 2002 teaching biology, chemistry, AP environmental science and various environmental science electives. Jeff has developed the Environmental Proctor program, led in the establishment of the Gilchrist Environmental Fellowship, launched the newly developed agriculture program and coordinates sustainable best practices on campus including, energy monitoring, energy audits and conservation in faculty residences along with water conservation initiatives such as hydration stations and low flow showerheads in dormitories.

Jeff has a B.S. in Ecology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and an M.S. Ed in Outdoor & Environmental Education from Northern Illinois University. In addition to his work in the Center, Jeff is the head coach for girls varsity volleyball and girls golf, and is an affiliate in Taylor Hall.

Marley Aloe Matlack, Associate Director

phone: 860.687.6329 Email


Marley Aloe Matlack, Director of International Education Programs and Associate Director of the Alvord Center, has been an international educator since 2004. Over the course of her international education career, Marley has developed, coordinated and led short-term secondary school study abroad programs to more than ten countries, has lived and worked abroad at an independent secondary school in Northern England, and has participated in professional development programs in the Caribbean, Cambodia, and Canada. In addition to her professional experience, Marley has traveled extensively around the world – exploring more than 35 countries in her journeys.

Marley has a B.A. in Environmental Science from Wesleyan University, an M.S.W in Social Work (with a Group and International Social Work focus) from The University of Connecticut, and an M.A. in International Education from The School for International Training (SIT). In addition to her work at the Center, Marley teaches Environmental Science and is an affiliate in Carter Hall.

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