__MAIN_TEXT__
feature-image

Page 1

March 2021 • Volume 15, Issue 5

The 1851 Chronicle

www.The1851Chronicle.org

@1851chronicle

/1851Chronicle

@1851chronicle

2020, 2021 Commencement update

RAYANA PETRONE

1851 staff

As the 2020-2021 school Kyra Walsh. year is coming to a close, the “I’m so appreciative that question of whether or not students have been heard. I Lasell would host in-person know this has been something Commencement for its 2020 that’s weighed a lot on people and 2021 graduates was up in so I know it feels like a sense the air until a recent email was of relief for many. It feels like released by President Michael we’re getting the closure we Alexander, confirming in-perneeded as seniors graduating son ceremonies. mid-pandemic,” said Avery “... We plan to move forStankus (‘20). ward with in-person, on-camWhile only being able to pus graduation ceremonies bring two guests to the cerFriday, May 14 and Saturday, emonies is unfortunate for May 15 on Taylor Field right some, many graduates are aphere on the Lasell University preciative that they are being campus,” said President Alexrecognized for their accomander in the email. plishments, and the university This came as a surprise to is pleased to put on a modimany students as the last update fied ceremony for students on the status of Commenceand their guests. ment came on February 24. In “At these ceremonies, we this email, graduates were told will honor longtime Lasell they would receive a survey askcommencement traditions, ing for their top priorities in a which include each graduate commencement ceremony. walking across the stage,” said Recently, some students Alexander. had felt uninformed about the At this time, the ceremostatus of Commencement. “We nies are scheduled based on have been waiting a year now, the current COVID-19 restricand the longer I get separattions and guidelines. Graduated from Lasell, I feel like the ing students and their guests less and less Commencement are highly encouraged to conPHOTO COURTESY OF AVERY STANKUS is going to mean,” said Matt tinue to check Lasell’s ComFrom L-R, class of 2020 graduates Rachel Stankus, Alexa Madeiros, Avery Stankus, Allison Garriepy, and Katie Jones Berentsen (‘20). mencement website for upatop a Lasell University sign. Photo taken on March 28, 2020. Once the university redates as things are subject to ceived the survey results, it rechange due to the pandemic. leased a tentative Commencement plan in- of 2020 and the Class of 2021 will receive that will be upheld…” More information will be released on Regardless of the restrictions on the the Commencement website including cluding dates. “Graduate [students] from their degrees at separate ceremonies on Saturday, May 15,” according to Alexander. ceremonies, many students are glad there registration details and the updated Comboth the Classes of 2020 and 2021 will reLasell’s Commencement website is a plan in the making. “I was absolutely mencement information. ceive their degrees… Friday, May 14” and states, “Each graduating student will be shocked, after the last update, this was not “Undergraduate students from the Class allowed two guests… this is a firm policy what I was expecting to hear,” said senior

Valentine Dining Hall re-opens for indoor seating

KAIT BEDELL & KAIE QUIGLEY news editor

& features editor

PHOTO BY KATIE PETERS

Signs inside Valentine Dining Hall direct students to availble seating.

The Valentine Dining Hall opened up indoor seating on Tuesday, March 9 for the first time since the pandemic broke out. After a long-awaited decision based on the safety of students, the university decided it was time to allow students to dine indoors. “Lasell students and the community have been doing a really good job staying free of infection,” said Director of Health Services Richard Arnold. “That assured us that students were

INSIDE THIS ISSUE

doing the right thing… [and] allowed us to feel like if we opened up as much as we could, we could trust that the students would continue to do the right thing.” “We also felt it was really important for mental health reasons,” said Arnold. “We’ve all been through two semesters of this isolation.” “So we were looking at any possible way we could try to improve the mental health environment… This was one area we could… allow folks to socialize.” Arnold says “one of the big things about [socializing] is actually being able to see the other person experiencing that thing. So this is the opportunity, since you have to take your mask off to keep the distance. It’s a much better social environment.” While dining indoors, students are expected to follow a list of protocols, which include wearing masks whenever they are not eating, keeping a maximum of six people at each table. At each table, there are scannable QR-codes that bring students to a form where they fill out their name and table number in case of the need for contact tracing. Students are also being asked to keep their meals to a limit of 30 minutes. These regulations must be followed, however, Arnold does not want students to feel overly monitored. “We don’t want to be in a police state. It’s enough of a

Canceling spring break hurt students Page 3

strain on everybody dealing with this COVID and the safe distancing, etc. We don’t want to add to the stress and the anxiety, that someone’s always watching us in our activities and what we’re doing,” he said. “Sometimes there’s somebody at the door asking to see your [CoVerified] badge… that’s PHOTO BY KAIE QUIGLEY the only monitoring we’re doing.” enjoying dinner after the administration decided to open up Arnold said Students Valentine Dining Hall for indoor dining. he’s only seen one incident where seven people were sitting back up especially with their limited budat a table for six. get,” first-year Lauren Russell said. “They are “We actually reached out to those stu- definitely doing everything they can to make dents and reminded them… that they re- the dining hall as normal as it can be.” ally need to stick to the seating.” Ultimately, Arnold trusts that students Students have enjoyed being allowed will continue upholding safety precauto eat indoors and feel the administration tions. “If things continue the way they are, was both safe and effective in making this I don’t see any need for increased monichange possible. toring,” he said. “With everything going on right now I think the staff did a great job opening it

Boston springing into warmer weather Page 9

GNAC competiton is back for spring Page 10


2

March 2021

EDITOR’S CORNER

Confidence is key

Opinion & Editorial

Canceling spring break hurt students ZACH KRAFT

1851 staff

As every student at Lasell knows by now, we didn’t have a spring break this semester. What would have been one week off in March was added on to winter break in January as an extension. I think this decision did an injustice to students for a multitude of reasons. In March, students are trudging through midterms and want to enjoy the nice spring weather. Taking our spring break away from us and adding it as an extension onto a cold winter break was inconsiderate. Obviously, most of us love our families and enjoy getting away from campus to celebrate the holidays. But let’s be real, what is there to do at home in late January? Absolutely nothing. It was cold, during our extended winter break, and we didn’t really do anything other than stay home. While that may be something many of us do during spring break, this year we didn’t have a choice. Canceling spring to keep our infection numbers better, instead of giving us time off to take a needed break was unfair. The administration knew people would travel, and wanted to keep Lasell’s positive numbers low. I understand Lasell wants our campus to be safe - we all do -

but we could have done that by having an isolation period upon returning to campus after spring break. Couldn’t we have done the same procedure we did after winter break? Looking back, I wish the decision to cancel spring break hadn’t happened. Traveling is a risk, yes, but students are adults and could have been trusted to travel safely and come back to campus

Dear Joe Biden, do better EMMA INGENOHL 1851 staff

TAYLOR VILES sports editor

When I came to college in the fall of 2018, I was trying to find my identity. I hated how I acted in high school and knew that Lasell offered me a clean slate to be whatever I wanted to be. It took me a while to learn what that was, but then I figured it out: I wanted to be a confident person. Finding that confidence isn’t something that happens overnight, but as soon as I began to realize that, learning to act confident was simple. I know it’s cliche, but “fake it ‘til you make it” is the saying that I began to use. Even if I had no clue what I was doing or how I was supposed to do it, I pretended. That’s not to say I didn’t keep asking questions. Contrary to common thought, not knowing something is not a sign of weakness. I ask “how” and “why” questions every single day. Sometimes my friends make fun of me if I don’t know something, but it’s not my fault that I was never taught that. It’s the effort I’m making now to learn what I didn’t before that’s important and is a sign of strength. I joined the 1851 Chronicle staff during my first year at Lasell. I had barely written before, besides English assignments in high school, but I began to use the confidence I was creating within myself to learn how to write for a newspaper. I would volunteer to write multiple stories and I began to reach out to people to interview for them. I remember the nerves in my first few interviews. I thought I would be judged on the questions I asked or that I would be accused of being a “bad interviewer” even though I wasn’t. The more interviews and stories I completed, the more confident I started to feel and the less I had to fake it. I started reaching out to more high profile people and to create connections which helped continue to build my self-confidence. Pretty soon, this confidence turned into a sense of belonging and I realized I had created a home for myself at Lasell. Through clubs such as the 1851 Chronicle and Lasell Community Television (which I became the president of junior year), I began to feel needed. Fast forward to today, I have become a leader in my field on this campus and I am proud to have accomplished the goal I set out to conquer.

The 1851 Chronicle

ILLUSTRATION BY ROBBY ROWE

and be safe then too. More importantly, we would have had the chance to catch up on our schoolwork, or maybe see friends. Hopefully, next year, spring break will return, but for graduating seniors, this year was lost; and once again it was students who paid the price.

The

1851Chronicle lasell university

Preceding his election as President of the United States, Joe Biden made many promises to the American people he failed to keep in his first few months in office. Possibly one of the biggest assets to Biden’s campaign was his plan for COVID-19 relief. The pandemic is potentially one of the most crucial issues that needs attention from the President, and Biden ran on the notion that his plan to help Americans was the one that could get us out of this tragic moment in history. Former President Donald Trump lost many of his ratings due to his lack of response to COVID-19, and Biden saw this as an entry point to gain support from followers who previously voted for Trump. One of the biggest points in the relief plan was to give eligible taxpayers, along with their dependents, $2,000 checks to help assist them with any expenses during this difficult time. However, upon being elected, he changed that number from $2,000 to $1,400 because many taxpayers had already received a $600 check under the Trump administration. $1,400 is not the $2,000 Biden had

promised, and adult dependents did not receive the initial $600. Before even being inaugurated, Biden had gone back on a promise he made. Furthermore, it took months for the Senate to pass the $1.9 trillion relief bill. In those months waiting, many families struggled to pay bills and even put food on the table. And what was Biden doing during that time of waiting? According to NBC news, he was bombing Syria, sending Immigration and Customs Enforcements out into the country to remove illegal immigrants, and filling border detention centers to pre-COVID-19 capacities. Since swearing in on January 20, 2021, Biden has not kept his word on many of the pressing issues he addressed prior, and in many ways has failed the country because of it. This country does not need another presidency filled with empty promises and lack of leadership, it needs a president who will fight for what is right and maintain their word to voters.

co-editors-in-chief

Katie Peters

Claire Crittendon art director

Michael Maruk copy editor

Rachel Shepard news editor

Kait Bedell opinion editor

Holly Feola features editor

Kaie Quigley arts editor

Abi Brown sports editor

Taylor Viles digital editors

Ruth Kehinde

Bailey Klingaman staff

Registration changes needed RAYANA PETRONE

Angela Hayes Karissa Gallghan

Audrey Abbate Lilly Hoeniger

Cameron Deniso LJ VP LaFiuria Emma Ingenohl Pat Carbone

1851 staff

With Academic Planning quickly approaching, it is now time for students to begin planning their courses for the upcoming school year. I think course registration is frustrating and challenging for a variety of reasons. The process for choosing courses allows for seniors to choose their courses first, followed by juniors, sophomores, and then first-years. This method of selecting things based on seniority can also be seen in the way the university approaches room draw. While this may be fair for housing, many have deemed it unfair for picking courses because oftentimes, underclassmen are left unable to take required courses. Besides the registration process, there are other elements of courses at Lasell that are frustrating to students. Because the university is much smaller in comparison to others, a lot of courses are only offered

1844 commonwealth avenue newton ma, 02466

during specific semesters. This has forced students to alter their academic plans to coordinate with when courses are running. This is not something some students feel as though they should have to worry about. It is understandable that seniors are made priority since it is their last year. However, expanding when courses are offered and having more sections of courses can help eliminate students changing around their entire academic plan if they aren’t able to take a class at a certain time. Most students have experienced issues one way or another with the limited courses, and overall frustration with the registration process. It is time to work with the Office of the Registrar and the Deans of all the five schools to open up the discussion on implementing fairness into the process, and more course options.

Joshua Michna Rayana Petrone

Josh Wolmer Rebecca Owoski Zach Kraft

Photographer

Michael Maruk illustrator

Robby Rowe faculty advisor

Marie C. Franklin

printing services provided by:

Graphic Developments Inc. for corrections, news tips, or suggestions, please contact:

the1851chronicle@gmail.com


The 1851 Chronicle

News

March 2021

3

RAs COVID-19 regulation proposal to be approved KAIT BEDELL & ZACH KRAFT news editor

& 1851 staff

On Thursday, March 25, the COVID-19 task force moved forward with the principle of a proposal sent forward by several Resident Assistants (RAs) in an attempt to lift some of the residential hall restrictions. The proposal will next face the senior management team on Tuesday, March 30 and would allow students to be in each other’s rooms under a limited pod system. According to Director of the COVID-19 Task force and Dean of Student Affairs David Hennessey, this is the proposal’s final stage before its approval. The rule would allow each student to choose two students who they would want to be allowed in their room. Due to contact tracing, the students selected must be mutual by both parties. Each roommate within a room is allotted their two students of choice, however, there can never be more than two people in addition to those living in the room to be present at any time. PHOTO BY KAIT BEDELL Hennessey is hopeful to see this pro-Students have been using the outdoor tents around campus as an alternative to spending time posal go through. with each other in dorms due to the current COVID-19 restrictions. “The idea of never having a friend in your room is just antithetical to what we why this proposal is even a possibility. an enforcer of the rules while also having do,” Hennessey said. “There’s something “The RAs have really been the un- to abide by them as a student. very special about campus environments sung heroes in all of this,” Hennessey Freeman said, “making sure people and when you get down to it, that level of said. “At the same time that this has been follow the guidelines and not being able personal interaction has just been missing.” really difficult for all of them, they’re the to see other RAs and people as often has Hennessey said the task force has ones that really came up with something. been difficult.” been hoping to do this for a long time Their involvement is really a key in this.” Freeman said due to the added presand that they think now is the safest time Junior Jyaito Freeman, an RA in sure of enforcing these rules, she felt to open residential halls up a little more. North Hall, is one of many students there was more pressure to patrol the In addition to cooperation of stu- who has had to face both sides of the students’ activities to ensure guidelines dents with testing and following guide- COVID-19 spectrum on campus: being are being followed. lines, Hennessey said the RAs are largely

As the RAs have had to struggle with enforcing COVID regulations, many of them are hoping to see some of these rules change. “There are still ways that we can be social, and it’s good that we’re trying hard to keep everyone safe, but I could only imagine what it would be like for someone in a single who doesn’t have anyone,” Freeman said. Sophomore Spencer Fulone, an RA in Woodland Hall, is also hoping to see this proposal go into effect soon. “I think we kind of expressed it early on to Dean Hennessey, after the first semester you could definitely tell nobody was as excited to come back,” Fulone said. “The energy was down on campus and nobody was really excited to repeat the same semester, so I think Dean Hennessey and the rest of the task force really took our word and our passion into consideration.” Fulone said the task force was really open to listening to the students’ perspective and he is optimistic about this proposal’s approval. “I hope the students keep in mind that things will get better,” Fulone said. “ I know this proposal has been going on for a while... a lot of people would’ve wanted it to be done and over with by now and have campus go back to the way it was, but big decisions like this definitely take time and they don’t happen overnight.”

Student requests fulfilled: 1851 late-night re-opens KAIE QUIGLEY features editor

One of the most missed on-campus offerings has returned as a reward for students’ commitment to keeping the community safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic— 1851 has re-opened for latenight dining three nights a week. In an email to the undergraduate student body in mid-February, Assistant Vice President of Administration and Operations Diane Parker said, “because of all of your incredible work – wearing face coverings, not gathering in groups, and helping to keep the Lasell community safe – we feel that we are able to offer a modified late-night program at 1851 while continuing to keep everyone COVID-safe.” Also returning at 1851 is the meal swipe option in which students can pay for orders using swipes from their meal plan, instead of having to use dining dollars or personal debit or credit cards. The amount of late-night meals each student is allowed per week depends on their meal plan. The email sent out by Parker also states that the Laser 19 plan allows for three meals a week, the Laser 14 allows for two meals a week, and the Laser 10 allows for one meal a week. Junior Olivia Faulkner enjoys having the ability to use a meal swipe at 1851’s late-night. “As a resident student, I enjoy having more than one option [for dining]. Sometimes I just want a quick bite to eat and I will go to 1851 instead of the dining hall and it’s nice to have many options,” said Faulkner. While this option is available for the first time since last year, things are operating differently than they were pre-pandemic. “Due to COVID-19 restrictions,

we will not have the ability to take an order at the counter; the Boost app is the only way to place an order,” said Parker in the email. The Boost app is used to ensure contactless ordering and payment.“Pre-covid, guests would have an order number on their receipt, the team member would call out the number and occasionally guests would lose their tickets causing some confusion. The introduction of Boost has made the ordering process efficient for students as well as the dining team,” said Kyle Mullen, who works in dining services and often works late-night hours at 1851. While the app has been used for 1851 all year, there is now a separate section exclusively for meal swipe orders. Students must do all order customizations on the app, and can pay with dining dollars or by using a swipe when they pick up their order. “I like it more than the old way,” said junior Madison Wantman about ordering through the Boost app. “I don’t have to sit and wait for my food, I can just order it and then go pick it up when it’s ready.” Wantman also said, “the app is really easy to use and all you have to do is tap your [Lasell ID] when you pick it up.” Boost also aims to help with crowd control by managing the number of orders per minute and hour. Additionally, the email from Parker encouraged students to arrive no earlier than their allotted pick-up time to alleviate crowding concerns at the counter and in Arnow. “Late-night continues to be busy, especially from 6:00 [p.m.], 7:00 [p.m.],”

PHOTO BY KATIE PETERS

A mozzarella stick basket purchaced with a meal swipe at Arnow’s 1851. Other baskets include chicken tenders, quesadillas, grilled cheese, salad, and burgers.

said Mullen. “Now with students having the option to use their meal swipe, it’s created an additional incentive to order food on-campus… late-night is our busier meal period.” Students are required to wear a mask and abide by all other COVID-19 restrictions at pick-up, including physical distancing. Meals are packaged so they can be taken back to be enjoyed in a socially distant area. Students are permitted to eat with groups in Arnow as long as guidelines are being followed. “I see late-night reopening as a huge success,” said Mullen. “The first few

nights provided us room to make adjustments to ensure a smooth experience for both the guest and our team. In my experience, I see that students are very pleased to see late-night return as it gives them a sense of normalcy on campus.” Late-night options will be available on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 5:30 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.


4

March 2021

The 1851 Chronicle

News

School of Business Day goes virtual KATIE PETERS & KAIT BEDELL co-editor-in-chief

& news editor

Lasell saw the third annual School of Business Day on March 10, but it looked different this year. A day typically consisting of face-to-face activities was replaced with computer screens and a Canvas page: both side effects of the pandemic. Throughout the virtual event, students were able to attend activities both synchronously and asynchronously through a page on Canvas. Activities included alumni panels, keynote speakers and information sessions regarding different career paths within the world of business. The day’s events began with the first keynote speaker, Senior VP of Marketing & Broadcasting for the Boston Red Sox Colin Birch. In a 45-minute interactive presentation, Birch gave students insight into how business at Fenway Park drastically changed over the past year. Despite the unusual nature of the day, the School of Business still saw a large turnout. With an average of 45 attendees per event, Dean of the School of Business Mathew Reilly said he was pleased with how the day went. “We were a little worried about attendance,” Reilly said. “We didn’t know how excited students were going to be to virtually attend these workshops, but we were delighted to see that our attendance was extremely high and on par with what we’ve seen in previous years.” This year was junior sport management major Raymond Bruno’s third year attending School of Business Day. He saw certain advantages as well as drawbacks to hosting this event on Zoom. On one hand, Zoom may be more convenient for speakers and panelists across the globe to participate. On the other, the opportunities students got for 1-on-1 conversations with

industry professionals were limited. “I do think [Zoom] made it more convenient for the speakers,” says Bruno. “I believe everything that could have been done was done to make it the best it could be.” Although the virtual experience varied from the traditional School of Business day, Reilly said that the department was still able to maintain its goals in connecting students. “School of Business day is a flagship event for the School of Business that focuses on business education, networking opportunities and career development,” Reilly said. “We wanted to make sure we stuck by those values when creating this virtual school of business day and we were

PHOTOS BY KATIE PETERS

(L-R) Founder and Managing Partner of McLaren & Associates CPAs David McLaren and Vice President of Marketing and Broadcasting of the Boston Red Sox Colin Burch give students insight into the fast-changing field of business.

Vaccinations on campus come to a halt REBECCA OWOSKI

road doesn’t mean you shouldn’t persevere through life,” she says. The second keynote speaker of the day, Founder and Managing Partner of McLaren & Associates CPAs David McLaren, shared his personal life story as a way to exemplify the day’s theme. “Do your work from your mind but talk and feel from your heart,” said McLaren when giving parting advice to students. Junior accounting major Katherine Ortiz said the day ran smoothly despite the irregularity of the event, and particularly liked the guest speakers and alumni panel. “The biggest takeaway for me that I got from the event was learning about the challenges that each guest speaker went through and how they overcame those obstacles,” Ortiz said. She also felt School of Business Day helped students see new and positive opportunities after graduation. In addition to live Zoom events, The School of Business also offered a list of asynchronous webinars and events available to students through the Canvas page. Four current students - accounting and finance major Olivia Tata, sport management majors Olivia Faulkner and Austin Leblanc, and marketing and finance major Rachel Carlino - shared stories from their internships in short videos. Some of the other videos focused on career development, with information sessions from the National Retail Federation Student Association, DECA Student Organization, Lasell’s fifth-year option, and Association of Supply Chain Management Student Organization. Webinars from Dorothy Walker, Bill Gates, and Professor Martin Walsh were also available.

LURE grant to be awarded to students CLAIRE CRITTENDON co-editor-in-chief

1851 staff

As the COVID-19 vaccine has been introduced all over the country, in recent months the Lasell community had hopes of its distribution on campus through Massachusetts’ Vaccine Standby program. On February 22, students received an email from the Director of Health Services Richard Arnold detailing how Lasell could move into Phase II of vaccinations. Members of the community over the age of 65 or with at least two specific medical conditions were eligible for the vaccine at that time. These medical conditions included in Phase II include: cancer, chronic kidney disease, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), Down Syndrome, a variety of heart conditions, immunocompromised from an organ transplant, a BMI above 30, pregnancy, Sickle Cell Disease, participation in smoking, or type two diabetes. Only four days later, students, faculty, and staff received a second email from Arnold informing them that there would no longer be vaccination distribution on campus. According to Arnold’s email, “the Commonwealth decided to prioritize mass vaccination centers, among other providers,” and will no longer provide vaccines to higher education distribution centers. After vaccinating about 320 members of the community, Arnold was surprised to hear Lasell would not be receiving more vaccines, saying, “We had entered into this commitment with the understanding that we would be able to continue to provide vaccines.” According to Dean Hennessey, the decision on which vaccination centers would be

successful in doing so.” Students were able to connect with alumni from the business, hospitality sport management programs during three separate live Alumni Panels, where they discussed jobs in today’s world. Professor Dina Tanvuia presented a webinar outlining proper etiquette while on a formal Zoom call shortly after, followed by a panel discussion on how COVID-19 has affected the sporting event industry. According to Dr. Nancy Waldron, the theme of the day was resilience and grit, which was brought up in most of the discussions and events. “I think the lesson that all the students walked away with was that just because you hit bumps in the

receiving vaccines comes as the state only receives approximately 110,000 doses a week. This dosage is forcing Governor Baker’s office to prioritize vaccines to high-risk areas and high-volume vaccination sites, including Fenway Park and Gillette Stadium. Despite this setback, Arnold is advocating weekly for vaccines, submitting a survey to the Department of Public Health, requesting a specific number of vaccines. As of right now, there is no update on when or if Lasell will receive more vaccines. Although Lasell is not currently vaccinating on campus, Arnold’s goal is to vaccinate the whole community as soon as possible, hopefully by the end of the semester. Vaccinating the entire community before leaving this semester or returning next semester “will have a significant impact on what we can and cannot do in the fall,” says Arnold. Arnold and the entirety of Health Services are committed to getting vaccines back on campus, a good sign for students, faculty, and staff as campus could return to some level of normalcy in the fall. First-year Katrina Abouzeid has missed out on aspects of campus that drew her to Lasell, however, she showed excitement at the possibility of normalcy. Abouzeid said, “I am really hopeful for a normal campus life to experience what everyone says college is about.” While it is unknown when vaccinations could resume on campus, members of the Lasell community are encouraged by Health Services to continue to be safe and get vaccinated as soon as possible if they are able to.

On February 11, undergraduate students received an email from Academic Affairs on behalf of Professor of Business Zane Zheng subject lined “Call for LURE grant proposal.” The LURE grant, or the Lasell University Research Excellence, was founded in 2020. According to Zheng, “the overarching goal of this grant mechanism is to allow Lasell undergrads to create new knowledge and explore new territories in their own professional fields.” All undergraduate majors are eligible to apply. To qualify, students must present an idea for a research project spanning April to November 25, 2021, and find a professor to work alongside them. This year’s grant theme is “promoting the use of digital technology in problem-solving,” due largely in part to the pandemic’s effect on our interaction with technology. As a society, we have all become engrossed in daily Zoom calls and constant FaceTimes with physically distant family and friends. Zheng hopes to award five student-professor teams $150 towards their research project. The deadline for applications was March 15, with Zheng and the rest of the Committee on Academic Research and Development (CARD). CARD was founded by Zheng to evaluate research being done at Lasell. He said, “one of the missions of that committee was to evaluate ideas, and also trying to come up with ways to increase the intensity and productivity of research in the community.” In 2020, Zheng received seven applications spread out over the five schools - Communications and the Arts, Health Sciences, Fashion, Humanities, Education, Justice Stud-

ies and Social Sciences (HEJSS), and Business. Zheng’s reason for starting the LURE grant was to inspire more “interest-based” research at Lasell’s undergraduate level. He feels while many students are completing research projects, when said projects are linked to a class or credit, they are more “mission-based,” and less driven by the students’ passion. “It’s completely created out of your own thoughts and ideas and based on your understanding and perspectives of what is going on in your professional field,” said Zheng. “So, whatever you’re working on, or whatever your major, wherever you’re coming from, as long as you have this idea that you want to pursue, that’s totally unrelated to the current coursework, that will be a wonderful opportunity where you can use LURE grant, to have some monetary support and a faculty sponsor, in order to get your interest realized.” The application itself asked for demographics such as gender to ensure the pool of winners was as diverse as possible. Aside from demographical information, applicants were asked to describe their proposed project, explain how their project fits into a “bigger picture,” go over their methodology, and lastly list an itemized budget. “Find an idea that you feel like is worth pursuing, and dive into it. Try to create something new, and put your own name on it. LURE grant was created to achieve that purpose, in order for students to think outside the box, and then trying to make something of their own.” Winners are set to be announced in early April.


The 1851 Chronicle

Features

March 2021

5

Olivia Powers interns with LU professor RUTH KEHINDE digital editor

PHOTO BY RUTH KEHINDE

Olivia Powers sits at their desk in the Brennen Library while working for their internship.

Senior Olivia Powers is currently spending their last semester interning on campus. As they finish their criminal justice major and psychology minor, Powers

is interning for Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice Edward G. Weeks. Powers has been working with Weeks since the fall of 2020. “When I was going into the internship process, I didn’t really know what my options were due to most places I had applied to either weren’t hiring new interns due to COVID-19 or I heard nothing back from places I had applied,” Powers said. Regardless of the dilemma in the application process, Powers appreciated being accepted as Weeks’ intern. As Professor Weeks is currently on sabbatical, he’s writing a book about aging out of the foster care system and programs available for them. Additionally, Weeks objective for this book is to promote the resources that still need to be improved upon when individuals go through the process of this transitioning. Powers’ internship is research-based, centered around finding concrete resources Weeks can use for his book. To reflect on their internship experience, Powers took a justice studies internship course last semester. This course recorded internship hours and

had students share their encounters and tasks in their class seminars with their classmates and professor. As they reviewed their process, Powers realized in this positive experience they’ve “never done much research work but it was cool to be able to learn new skills.” In addition to being an intern, Powers works at the Brennan Library. “[They’re] always themself… I love that [they] embrace [their] uniqueness,” Elaine Rush Arruda, Head of Access Services and Powers’ supervisor said. Regardless of working with co-workers virtually, Powers always considered themself to be an independent worker. Although they love being part of a group, “contributing my own piece to an assignment makes me feel included and validated in my abilities,” they said. Despite originally lacking in skills such as researching on various databases and creating annotated bibliographies, this internship drove Powers to take accountability and strengthen those skills to use in future endeavors. “Olivia has a way of looking at things... instead of stressing out about them, they

see the humor in it. That allows others to [also] see the humor in it instead of getting anxious or upset about things. I think that’s a huge gift that Olivia has,” Said Library Director Anna Sarneso. This internship helped strengthen Powers’ research skills and taught them how to advocate for themself when it came to taking on more work. The support that Powers provided to themself was all the drive they needed to accomplish their tasks. “I think Olivia is an incredibly creative and intelligent person and… they honestly make life amazing. I think every time they speak, I can’t stop laughing. They’re the funniest person I know,” said senior Claire Shepard, Powers’ roommate. After graduation, Powers hopes to pursue a career as a substance abuse counselor. This internship gave them the necessary skills to use pertaining to research, teamwork, independence, and accountability. This internship “definitely prepared me for some parts of my future career and helped me to feel more confident in my abilities as a student,” Powers said.

Teaching ‘Tomorrow’s Teachers’ Lasell Works keeps on working TAYLOR VILES

KAIT BEDELL & ANGELA HAYES

sports editor

news editor

PHOTO COURTESY OF NICOLE HASSET

Tomorrow’s Teachers talk over Zoom during their most recent club meeting on March 25.

Tomorrow’s Teachers is a club at Lasell mainly dedicated to giving opportunities to aspiring educators. Like other clubs, members were forced to move club meetings to Zoom due to COVID-19. The fall semester acted as a slight barrier for club leaders as they were spending time trying to salvage club participation with the new regulations. “We definitely slowed down,” said club secretary junior Nicole Hassett. “When we were in person, we would have a meeting every other week. For the fall semester, because of the transition, we were fully online. We tried [to meet] every other week, but it ended up being, like, once a month.” Hassett, along with junior Dana Coughlin, the club’s treasurer, have been a part of Tomorrow’s Teachers since their first year at Lasell. Hassett joined the e-board halfway through her sophomore year. Hassett and Coughlin say the hardest part of the new online format has been persuading people to come to meetings. Currently, the club is meeting every other Thursday at 7 p.m. “I just feel like people are tired of Zoom,” said Coughlin. “It’s not a class. They don’t want to come and stay on Zoom for another 30 minutes if they don’t have to.” Despite this, the club has begun to plan events for the remainder of the semester. Their first event came on April 1 as they hosted children’s book author Anna Staniszewski over zoom. On April 6 from 4 to 5:30 p.m., there will be an online discussion about diversity in children’s literature. On April 15 at 7 p.m., Tomorrow’s Teachers will host a program to discuss trauma and children with a member of

the Special Investigations Unit for the Department of Children and Families (DCF). Although these events are planned by an education club, Hassett encourages people to take part in them regardless of their major. “For our upcoming events...we are trying to have, like, English majors, people that like art, we’re just trying to involve everyone.” In addition to scheduled events, the club regularly sends cards to Boston Children’s Hospital for sick children to lift their spirits. Club Advisor and Associate Professor of Education Amy Maynard is proud of the work her President junior Grace West and the rest of the eboard has done to keep Tomorrow’s Teachers relevant. “I think they’ve done incredibly well,” said Maynard. She said there was some confusion of what to use their budget for at the beginning of the school year but operations became clear. Maynard said she gave her club leaders many thoughts of events to do which helped to spark ideas of their own. “I feel like the things they’re doing now are a little bit more professional-oriented,” she said.

The professional connections that education majors make by joining Tomorrow’s Teachers are unparalleled. The club works with area schools as well as other programs that introduce Lasell students to peers in their field. “We’ve worked with St. Stephen’s, an after-school program in Boston, [and] we’ve worked with the West Newton Boys and Girls Club,” said Hassett. “That was the main reason why I joined freshman year, just getting those experiences.”

& 1851 staff

Lasell Works is a program the university introduced where students live off-campus for their sophomore year and work a part-time job while taking online classes. It is designed to help students get involved with the workforce early, and helps students save on money as the cost of their sophomore year is exempt from room and board. Director of Lasell Works Stephanie Williams has been running the program for three years. As soon as she heard the pitch, she knew she “had to be on the frontier.” Williams explained how the program “gives students real-world experience to connect what they’re learning in the classroom with what they do in the world.” Williams spends a lot of her time speaking one-on-one with students, checking in with them at least once a month. Two students currently exploring their sophomore year experience, Kaitlyn Gargas and Emily Hamm, expressed their thoughts on the program. Gargas, a double major in event management and hospitality is from Maynard, Massachusetts and is currently living and working full-time at Stratton Mountain ski resort in Vermont. Her original hope was to work more in her field organizing concert venues, but that has been put on hold due to the pandemic. She took the two and a half hour leap away from home because she loves the adventure of seasonal work. Gargas joined Lasell Works because she was drawn to the freedom of it and found a great amount of personal growth and independence through it. She expressed how she thinks “people need to not get caught up in the fact that you’re not on campus sophomore year ‘cause I think a lot of people are going to just feel like they’re going

to miss their friends too much, which obviously I do, but there’s still more opportunities, you’re not just losing things, you’re gaining a bunch.” Sophomore English major Emily Hamm said she also benefits greatly from the opportunities that come with being home during her sophomore year. Hamm works as a substitute teacher at an elementary school and works remotely as a writing teacher for an insurance agency. While Hamm enjoyed her time on campus during her first year, she said the experience she gets from the program makes living at home for the year worth it. “This program has really helped me to establish connections and establish what route I want to take with my English degree,” Hamm said. Although some students in the Lasell Works program had concerns about the possibility of work shortage and how the program would be impacted, Hamm, among others, has maintained a positive experience.

“Even though it’s virtual I really have felt that I’m still able to maintain those connections [with students] that I made freshman year,” Hamm said. “Obviously COVID has placed a challenge on a lot of things and I’m grateful to be placed in the opportunities I have been for working.” Williams is hoping the program can “benefit from the oddity and the difficulty of this last year and that students everywhere will realize that you don’t, you know, things don’t have to be the way you’ve always pictured them to be in order for them to be great.” While Williams understands this unusual plan can seem scary, she hopes more students will be open to the adventure and the challenge of Lasell Works.

PHOTO COURTESY OF EMILY HAMM

Sophomore Emily Hamm helps at Lasell Works event during her first year when she was living on campus.


6

March 2021

Features

The 1851 Chronicle

Jesse Tauriac: The most caring on campus JOSHUA MICHNA

1851 contributer

“Jesse, to me, is a figure I can look up to for motivation and inspiration,” says junior Eleianet Nunez, a student worker at the Intercultural Center & Commuter Cottage (IC3). “He is someone who genuinely puts his heart into everything he does and cares for his students and others deeply.” Nunez isn’t the only one who feels this way about Jesse Tauriac, Assistant Vice President, Chief Diversity Officer, and Director of the Donahue Institute for Ethics, Diversity and Inclusion at Lasell University. In fact, this is the collective opinion on campus.

dents can trust, but someone who trusts students. He makes people comfortable by trusting them and encouraging their success. When Yadira Medina-Echavarria, a current junior of Dominican heritage, contacted Tauriac to participate in a Hispanic heritage event, he was happy for her help with the planning and execution. Today she is a student worker at the IC3.

Thomas Morgan, the Assistant Director at the Donahue Institute claims Tauriac is “the most caring person on campus.”

Where does this commitment to caring come from and how did he earn such a positive reputation at Lasell? Tauriac had a complex childhood. Growing up in South Boston, he went through the foster care system. He saw a different perspective than most children. His life would have been different without his adoptive mother, a role model that lived true to her values. She was kind and always cared about the needs of others. She instilled these valPHOTO COURTESY OF JOSHUA MICHNA ues in Tauriac at a young age. Tauriac’s childhood experience Chief Diversity Officer Jesse Tauriac (F) and Assistant Director of The Donahue Institute Thomas guided him when choosing a career. In Morgan (B) pictured on the ground floor of the Intercultural Center and Communter Cottage (IC3.) high school he took a career aptitude Photo taken before COVID-19 mask mandate. test that suggested three careers: rabbi, psychologist or psychiatrist. Tauriac isn’t ognized institutional issues. He saw that Besides his personable warmth and calm Jewish, so he ruled out the first option. people were being hurt unintentionally, demeanor, Tauriac uses three specific He liked the idea of being a psychologist. and saw that students encountering is- methods that make the people around As someone who went through the fos- sues related to race had nowhere to go to him comfortable. First, he is very perceptive of others. ter care system, he cared about helping talk about these issues. Tauriac saw these IC3 student worker senior Alanis Perezissues as a challenge and soon became inothers since he understood the hardships Rivera describes a conversation she had volved in conversations and conferences children in special circumstances experiwhere Tauriac was explaining an idea, about diversity on campus. ence. Tauriac also desired the intellectual and made sure he was not speaking over Following a racially offensive issue stimulation and problem-solving aspect her experiences as a woman before conin 2014 with the previous dining service, of a career in psychology. tinuing. She was appreciative of his delibLasell sought to improve support for its Tauriac attended Boston Universierate care about her in the conversation. diverse student body and address race ty and received his bachelor’s degree in The second method Tauriac uses to dynamics on campus. The community psychology. He then received both a masmake people comfortable could be conwanted a specific person, not the general ter’s degree and PhD from the University sidered untraditional— in the right confaculty, to lead this meaningful position. of Massachusetts in Boston. Although he text, he swears. This technique makes The community turned to Tauriac. considered practicing psychology clinicalstudents view Tauriac as a trustworthy By the time he was selected to take ly, Tauriac found a passion for teaching. He enjoyed the student interaction, which the position as the Director of the Do- friend instead of as an authoritarian facnahue Institute at Lasell, he was already ulty member. It also opens the floor for led him to pursue a career as a teacher. Tauriac began teaching psychology gaining popularity on campus. Tauri- students to express emotions freely, withat Lasell in 2012, and immediately rec- ac has a special ability to make people out restraint or fear of consequence. Third, Tauriac is not only someone stucomfortable as soon as he meets them.

Another testament to Tauriac’s devotion to caring is his remarkable ability to remember faces, names, and intricate details about people’s lives. Morgan remarked that Tauriac always remembers the names of his two cats, and joked that he can barely remember their names himself. Not only does Tauriac remember details, but he inquires frequently about the wellbeing of students and checks in on their accomplishments. Although Tauriac is passionate about caring for everyone on campus, it is not an easy task. The university’s small size means that everyone is well connected, and the IC3 team becomes closely invested in the wellbeing of many students. He sympathizes with everyone, so when someone on campus has experienced racism or mistreatment, it affects him personally. Caring for and making sure everyone is represented on campus is a huge commitment. Even with an assistant director, six student workers, and six interns, Tauriac is busy around the clock helping students and planning events. Hosting both pre-election and post-election conversations, the IC3 had focused on politics in the community last semester. There was also an outdoor celebration for LatinX & Hispanic Heritage Month, an event focused on decolonizing history on Indigenous People’s Day, and increased awareness for both Transgender Day of Remembrance and International Day of People with Disabilities. These special events were planned in addition to the annual Lasell U Belong festival and the student-only “Real Talk on Race” discussions. Tauriac has come a long way in life, and is a huge part of shaping the future of the Lasell community. His experiences in life gave him the skills and values to be a much loved, respected, and certainly considered the most caring person at Lasell University.

University upgrades internet over winter break KAIE QUIGLEY, RAYANA PETRONE & JOSH WOLMER features editor

& 1851 staff

While the student body was away on winter break, the university made several technological upgrades in hopes of improving internet connection for the campus community. Taking a hybrid approach to the 2020-2021 school year due to COVID-19, having competent WiFi has become a necessity. “Before, we weren’t heavily relying on Wi-Fi… the pandemic created this huge shift into focusing on improvements,” said Infrastructure Technician, Erin Larghi. Upgrades made over the break included replacing and upgrading wireless controllers, reconfiguring access points throughout several dorms to provide a stronger signal in weak coverage areas, load balancing the network to prevent oversaturation, and replacing several network switches to increase bandwidth. “We are always improving our equipment, and always looking for up-

grades and patches,” said Mirian Sousa, Senior Infrastructure Technician. According to Sousa, it is important for the university “to always be as up to date with technology as possible.” Since these improvements were made, “we have had… fewer tickets. And a lot of times, especially when a new semester starts, there are more registration issues and new devices and things like that. But we have had just a couple sporadic issues,” Sousa says. Despite the decrease in tickets, students still reported running into issues with connectivity. “The internet turns off on me at times and I have to reboot my technology like my iPad and PlayStation 4. There are even times where the WiFi just won’t connect to my technology due to the fact the signal has been extremely weak,” said junior Michael Carbone. Devices such as Carbone’s PS4 need to be registered with the cam-

pus network to connect properly. “Registration issues… can affect Wi-Fi connectivity,” said Larghi. To combat this issue, which according to Larghi is fairly common, the team simplified the registration process for the “Lasell Secure” network. The process no longer requires additional steps for students beyond logging in with their Lasell username and password. “Personally I haven’t had too many issues with [the internet] and when I’m able to connect it runs decently,” said sophomore Jordan Jeroszko. “However, sometimes I’ll have a random day where I cannot connect to Wi-Fi at all or the latency is really bad. The most recent day in memory was a couple of weeks ago on a Thursday where the Wi-Fi went out for everybody at different points.” Students and faculty alike experienced another outage recently where the internet and Canvas were

down. This incident affected the ability of faculty and students to attend Zoom classes and participate in asynchronous courses. While issues may continue to occur due to such high network traffic, IT reassured students that upgrades are an ongoing discussion, and they make every decision with the thought of students in mind. “We’re always working on improvements, we’re always looking to make the student life better. Most of the work we do is student-driven. So any feedback [students] can give us is a huge help on our end,” says Sousa. “We’re fully committed to making sure we provide the best experience possible for our users, not just the students, but the staff as well.”


The 1851 Chronicle

Features

March 2021

7

Alum Zac Vierra brings passion to his MLB job CAMERON DENISO

1851 contributer

How would you describe someone that’s passionate about something? Can it be defined as sleeping in a tent outside from 1 a.m. to 5 p.m.? What about moving 2,471.6 miles alone to a place you’ve never been before? Zac Vierra has done both these things, all because of his passion for baseball. Vierra slept outside in a tent in 2013 so he could be first in line to get tickets for the World Series. Then, to start his career, he moved to Montana so he could gain experience writing stories and learn the ways of calling a baseball game. Growing up in Sandwich, Massachusetts, Vierra’s passion for baseball started at a young age. “I knew at a young age I wanted to be a sportswriter or a journalist or work for a baseball team, I knew I really wanted to work in baseball somehow,” said Vierra. That’s exactly what he did, after graduating from Lasell in 2013 with a major in communications and a minor in sports communications. Vierra’s first job in the baseball industry was in Montana as he worked with a minor league team as well as a broadcaster. He was responsible for writing game notes, doing stat packs, helping out coaches with the lineups, and running the team’s Twitter account. His writing shifted over time. “I think it helped when it came to doing longer feature stories to learning how to write blurbs for game notes which were shorter. Also, I ended up learning how to deal with character limits,” said Vierra. When Vierra was at Lasell, he worked as Co-Editor-in-Chief for the 1851 Chronicle. Associate Professor of Journalism Marie C. Franklin saw firsthand how he grew as a writer. “What made the difference was when he became an editor and had to supervise other students. I think that is when he really started to mature,” said Franklin.

After a year in Montana and doing some freelance jobs, Vierra landed in Florida where he worked at Roger Dean

Stadium during spring training for the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals. He ran the video board during the game as well as working hand-in-hand with the PA announcer, official scorer and people who ran the music. One of the things he took away from those jobs was clarity. “You learn a lot of different things and figure out what your niche is and what you continue to do and some things you don’t like about that job,” said Vierra. “I liked the social media aspect so I applied for social media jobs which brought me to the job with the Mets.” Vierra thus began working with the New York Mets on their social media, having some memorable experiences along the way. “When I was at the Mets we had a lot of cool people come in like Kevin James, we did a lot of cool social media stuff with them,” he said. “Working PHOTO COURTESY OF ZAC VIERRA with the team, I got to fly out with the whole Mets office and fly out to Kan- Zac Vierra with the four World Series trophies for the Boston Red Sox. sas City for game one and two of the “Zac is a high-energy, passionate and dream job after Lasell. I ended not even World Series, it was such an awesome ex- creative person. He always keeps things getting an interview and it was crushing perience being a baseball fan, I definitely light-hearted in the office,” said Ted Lee, because I put some much effort into maksoaked it all in.” one of the managers for the MLB Twitter. ing my portfolio unique but it shows how Vierra’s experience with the Mets “Zac brings so much energy to this competitive it is to not even get an interhelped him get the job of running the gig. He absolutely loves baseball, and he view. I was devastated but everything hapTwitter account for Major League Baseball can’t hide it at work. We sometimes joke pens for a reason,” said Vierra. (MLB). “I made a lot of great connections that working a shift with Zac that includes When there’s rejection, there comes when I was working for the Mets, but… a Red Sox game is basically like sitting some doubt. “I doubted if I even wantit’s also the connections I made when I next to someone at Fenway,” said Shan- ed to work in sports, thought if I should was in Montana and Florida that helped non Lynch, one of Vierra’s co-workers. change my career, you just gotta power me,” he said. “Connections and who you Vierra will be the first to tell you how through it.” That’s what Vierra did, he know are really important when it comes beneficial his previous jobs were, but he didn’t give up and he’s glad he didn’t, to applying for jobs,” said Vierra. also received rejection along the way. “I love what I do now, I don’t see myself One thing Vierra always tries to bring “I remember my senior year at Lasell, leaving anytime soon.” to each job is energy, “I consider myself there was a job with MLB.com being an asVierra’s passion for baseball and energy an energetic person who tries to keep sociate reporter where you work with the are undeniable. He hasn’t had the smootheverybody’s spirits up. I think it’s easy to team’s reporter. I put together this huge est journey, but his passion for baseball has bring a lot of energy to work every day portfolio with a bunch of people writing led him to where he is today; having a job when you’re passionate about something. me recommendations, put together all my he loves that many wish they could have. In my case, it’s baseball.” writing clips and sent it out and I was suHis co-workers have noticed as well, per confident at getting this job, it was my

RA Kevan Duffy checks in on campus mental health

LILLY HOENIGER

1851 contributor

Q: What are your personal opinions on these restrictions? A: I have many opinions on these restrictions. I do compliment our school for how well they’re handling this strange time of COVID but I think there should be a looser policy when it comes to socializing for residents. I would like to see one person be allowed into each residents’ room. Obviously, it’s different for everybody because of some groups living in suites but it’s something to consider. Q: How does the rest of your staff feel about the COVID-19 restrictions?

PHOTO BY LILLY HOENIGER

Kevan Duffy, 20, is a junior at Lasell University studying Business Management. He’s also a second year Resident Assistant in a first-year dorm.

This Resident Assistant speaks on Lasell student’s mental health in the midst of living on campus during COVID-19. Q: What are a few of the social restrictions that have been set in place for residents since being back on campus this school year? A: Before each semester, all of the residents had to sign a pledge that stated how they couldn’t go into other residents’ buildings that weren’t their own. They were extremely restricted in the sense that they couldn’t socialize with anyone unless it was being done outside.

A: The rest of my staff is on the same page. They’re having the same complaints from their residents regarding the restrictions and it’s deflating to tell them that we can’t do anything about it. We’re all really feeling for our residents. Q: Have you, as a staff, spoken up about these opinions to a higher voice in the Lasell community or do you plan to? A: Yes, we had a Zoom call with Associate Vice President and Dean of Student Affairs, David Hennessy in January where he asked for ideas for change based on the opinions we’ve heard from our residents and staff. Many Resident Assistants spoke up on that call and he told us to make a proposal that he could share with others who could help change the situation. That proposal was due Friday, Feb 5. Q: Compared to your first semester as a Resident Assistant in Fall of 2019,

how has your relationship with your residents changed? Was it a normal school year? A: Well back in 2019, things were going well. It was an extremely normal school year. The only things that I had to notably deal with were reminders of the alcohol policies in the dorms and parties but as of now, the entire campus environment has changed dramatically. Many students don’t have Friday classes and with minimal weekend activities on campus, they go home on Thursday and return Monday or Tuesday, depending on their schedules … Back in 2019, it felt like a nice community so I’d say we lost that feel because of how isolated students have to be in order to not break the new policies. Q: Have these restrictions limited your ability to help them as first year students? A: I wouldn’t say so. I’ve been a Resident Assistant for first-years for two years now and the one thing that I really think is important is to make sure they’re aware of all of their resources that Lasell offers. I’m still here to answer any of their questions about going through their first year so I’m still available as a guide for them. Q: What have you seen among your own residents when it comes to mental health? A: There’s been a huge amount of awareness going around especially because I know a lot of my residents are in singles. Their roommates made the decision to stay home this semester so it’s an isolating time for them. When they go to the dining hall,

they can’t take their food and sit down. They have to go back to their room. With it being such an isolating time, mental health has definitely been on the forefront for [Resident Assistants]. We’re still trying to make as much of a community as we can. I know a number of residents who didn’t like their first semester on campus so they’d rather stay home. That’s unfortunate as a [firstyear] because you’re trying to make friends in a new community and it’s hard to when you’re being forced to stay in your room. Q: Are you happy with your decision to continue as a Resident Assistant during the pandemic? A: I’m happy with my decision. I did a lot of thinking on whether or not I wanted to come back. I knew if I did, I wanted to be a Resident Assistant again for first-years. I wanted to make their first year of college as normal as I possibly could. Q: Finally, how has your mental health been since being on campus with all of the social restrictions? Have you seen a change personally? A: I would say there has been a huge change for my mental health. Compared to last year, where I had my friends on campus, my mental health was never a concern. It was never something that I really thought about until now where all of my friends chose to stay home. I’m in the same boat as most of my residents where I can’t really see anybody unless I make plans off campus or decide to go home for a weekend.


8

March 2021

The 1851 Chronicle

Arts & Entertainment

Healthy local take out for your taste buds RUTH KEHINDE & HOLLY FEOLA digital editor

& opinion editor

Campus Center is the dining hall. While getting food at the dining hall everyday, there may be some food options that aren’t to someone’s liking. Although there are inexpensive places to get food near the university, the options typically include pizza or fast food. However, many students are looking for options that are not only cheap, but healthy.

PHOTO BY RUTH KEHINDE

An order from Playa Bowls delievered to campus via DoorDash.

On campus, Lasers’ often struggle with figuring out how to eat healthier meals, as their only source of food besides the 1851 Market and 1851 in Arnow

provides nutritious options for customers to choose from. These options range from soups, salad, curry dishes and gluten-free selections to vegetarian specials. This restaurant puts you in control of what goes in your meal since you can create your own dinner. On top of it all, there’s bubble tea.

Food delivery companies such as Uber Eats and DoorDash have great choices for students to have their meals brought to their building. Here are some restaurants that provide nourishment, but also help you stay within your budget:

3. Miyuki Sushi - DoorDash - 547 Washington Street, Brighton If you need to get your protein, but don’t feel like eating chicken or beef, try out this sushi bar. Along with sushi, some healthy options include soup, salad and smoothies with 10 flavors to choose from.

1. Playa Bowl - DoorDash - 2199 Commonwealth Avenue, Brighton This healthy food spot has delicious, cool, refreshing smoothies, juices and smoothie bowls. The smoothie bowls come with many topping options which can be customized. There are also different smoothie bases.

4. Sweetgreen - Uber Eats - 210 Boylston St, Chestnut Hill Sweetgreen has various fresh and healthy choices to choose from. They serve various salads and have an option for you to customize one yourself. This healthy spot has plenty of selections for everyone.

2. Pho & Spice - DoorDash - 457 Moody Street Waltham This Vietnamese and Thai restaurant

5. B. Good - Uber Eats - 102 Central St, Wellesley This quick-style restaurant has

smoothies, grain bowls, salads, and veggie burgers. Their grain bowls and salads have plenty of options to choose from to satisfy your flavor palettes. 6. HoneyGrow - Uber Eats - 100 Northern Avenue, Boston HoneyGrow offers healthy salads and stir-fries filled with vegetables and different flavors. If their menu of salads and stir-fries doesn’t fit exactly what you want, there is an option to customize your own. 7. Qdoba Mexican Eats -Door Dash185 Linden Street, Wellesley Qdoba Mexican Eats is quick and simple to get your pick of what ingredients you’d like in a burrito, taco or bowl. This place has some flavorful and healthy options, and is similar to Chipotle, so what’s in your dish all depends on you. 8. Sofia’s Salad Bar - Uber Eats - 45 Billings Rd, Quincy This restaurant offers a plethora of 26 different salads that range in flavors. In addition to their salad selection, they also have many paninis to choose from.

Fashion Focus: From Wethersfield to Waisted Fashion KAIE QUIGLEY features editor

Emma Murray, junior fashion design major with a minor in business, said her mother helped discover and fuel her passion for fashion. At a young age, Murray was infatuated with her mother’s box of scrap fabrics. She didn’t know what she was doing with them; not many fiveyear-olds would, but she knew she felt a connection with them. As she transitioned into high school, Murray delved into the world of fashion design and rediscovered her relationship with scraps. She took three independent studies in fashion design, one of which taught her to sew. This is the point when Murray began hand-crafting her own garments in the attic, where her mother had helped set up a sewing studio. By the time she graduated from Wethersfield High School in her hometown of Wethersfield, CT, she had hand-crafted both of her prom dresses and started her own brand: Waisted Fashion. She was then on her way to the School of Fashion after her mother helped her through the application process. In her first few semesters on campus, Murray gained experience through internships with bridal companies Modern Trousseau and NOVA McLAREN, located in Woodbridge and Glastonbury, CT. She did freelance work for both companies, cutting lace and fabric for wedding dresses and learning the ins-and-outs of the process. Murray began taking her own brand more seriously in her sophomore year, making upcycled t-shirts and patch-work crewnecks, though she didn’t originally intend to monetize her designs. “I think at first I just loved the creativity aspects… loved making new clothes for myself.” However, once people began inquiring about her work, Murray had an epiphany. “I never thought of selling any of my garments, but then I realized, if I want to be a fashion designer one day, I better start [selling]… that’s why I minor in business.” Murray began making sales over quarantine through Etsy and Depop, and continues to sell garments through her Instagram @waisted_fashion. Murray says much of her inspiration

often comes from perusing Instagram and Pinterest. She will screenshot garments that catch her eye on Instagram and do deep dives on Pinterest, scrolling through various designs and patterns and saving them to her “virtual mood board”. When putting new pieces together, Murray takes a spontaneous approach, contrary to more traditional methods of brainstorming, sketching, modeling, etc. Her methods speak to her personality in this aspect. “School isn’t my thing, creativity is,” she says. “I just love working on my own brand… without having rules and boundaries.” In fact, she claims most of her projects are often a “surprise at the end,” and simply reflect the aesthetic she is fond of at the time. “Right now I’m into printing stuff… I make these carvings; it’s a block… and you can [carve] cool stamps out of it,” she says. “I just love playing around with that stuff… like stamping and then sewing it into a bag.” Emma Vierling, junior fashion merchandising major and Murray’s roommate, says “being [her] roommate this year and seeing it— the process she has is crazy. She’ll have this idea in her head and then decide she wants to do it… and then she’ll whip it out in like an hour and a half.” She told a story of when Murray crafted four outfits in three days in preparation for her birthday celebration. Vierling has been modeling for Murray since they were first-years, and began modeling for Waisted Fashion this fall. “First semester, we went to the Natick mall. [Murray] worked on a ton of stuff over the summer… she took like 50 things and turned them into new [garments] so she had like a whole collection for that. And me and our friend Maggie, we both modeled that for her.” Vierling was also a model for Murray’s most recent collection. Studio 1851, a student-run business that often collaborates with artists and designers on campus, featured Murray on their website in March as a Spotlight Artist. This recurring segment highlights a new artist in the Lasell community every month.

Catherine King, a member of the studio1851 team, said that upon reviewing Murray’s application, the team “instantly noticed how she uses thrifted and recycled materials to recreate the clothing into a whole new garment. It is as if she is giving the clothes a new life. At studio1851 we are all about being sustainable, supporting women-owned, and working with our community. Emma’s brand encapsulates

all of these goals and more while being incredibly chic and stylish.” The studio sold Murray’s Waisted Fashion garments throughout the month of March, giving her an in-store display. They also held a livestream with Murray on their Instagram @studio1851lasell. “We love what Emma brings to the table and are incredibly excited to be working with her,” said King.

PHOTO COURTESY OF EMMA MURRAY

Emma Murray models a jacket made from old jeans and a thrifted blanket.


The 1851 Chronicle

Arts & Entertainment

March 2021

9

Boston springing into warmer weather KATIE PETERS co-editor-in-chief

to The Fenway Victory Gardens. The seven-and-a-half acre plot of land was established as a Victory Garden in 1943, and continues to be used today as space for Bostonians to garden in the heart of the Fenway/Kenmore area. On an early spring walk through these gardens, one can see plants starting to sprout, talk with local gardeners, and enjoy a bit of nature in the middle of the city.

PHOTO BY KATIE PETERS

2. Boston Public Library - Central Location, 700 Boylston St, Boston

A plot at the Fenway Victory Gardens shows signs of life after the winter.

Spring in the Boston area always promises to be a time of growth and change. As the weather continues to warm up, the city’s streets and parks will soon be a place for Bostonians to enjoy the outdoors after the pandemic’s winter. From Fenway to Sommerville, here are four spots to explore this spring. 1. Fenway Victory Gardens, 1200 Boylston St, Boston A few blocks East of Fenway Park, the Back Bay Fens’s northernmost area is home

Located in Copley Square is the Boston Public Library’s (BPL) Central Location, the oldest standing library in BPL’s system. The McKim building opened to the public in 1895, and was designated as a National Historical Landmark in 1986. Today it is home to the iconic Bates Hall and murals by Pierre Puvis de Chavannes. A courtyard connects the McKim Building with its more modern addition, the Johnson Building which opened in 1972. Here, visitors can purchase food at the Newsfeed Cafe, watch a live WGBH broadcast from their satellite studio, and access other spaces the library offers.

3. Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, 125 Arborway, Boston Around the corner from where the Orange Line ends in Jamaica Plain, the 281-acre plot of land that the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University spans is home to “world’s most comprehensive and best-documented collections of temperate woody plants,” according to their website. Often described as a “living museum,” the Arnold Arboretum aims to share knowledge of the plant kingdom with a focus on research, horticulture, and education. Trails throughout the arboretum allow guests to explore over 1,500 species of trees, shrubs and vines the park has to offer. Throughout spring and summer, various plants such as Lilac Bushes and Magnolia Trees are expected to flower, giving visitors beautiful views. Self-guided walking tours are also available on their website for those who would like to learn more about the plants. 4. Assembly Row, 355 Artisan Way, Somerville For a day of shopping, Assembly Row in Sommerville offers a mix of popu-

lar stores, restaurants and entertainment spanning from Revolution Drive to Great River Road. The outdoor-style layout of this mall is perfect for a warm day and offers a slightly more covid-safe alternative to traditional malls. Aside from shopping, Assembly Row also offers entertainment options such as Muse Paintbar, Legoland Discovery Bar, and Lucky Strike Social bowling. To the north of Great River Road, Baxter State Park offers a beautiful view with trails along Mystic River.

PHOTO BY KATIE PETERS

Murals depicting philosophy, astronomy, history, and chemistry by Pierre Puvis de Chavannes are displayed along the walls of the BPL’s McKim Building’s main staircase.

Style Forecast: Spring/summer 2021 trend review EMMA INGENOHL 1851 staff

With more and more Americans getting their vaccines, there is a joy in the air, and spring/summer fashion is following suit. Though there will still be plenty of lounge and casualwear, bold colors and prints are back in style, and experimentation with accessories and shoes is already being seen. Early 2000s style is coming back around and these fashion trends will keep you fitted from March to August. Platforms, clogs and mules, oh my! Be ready to play around with some new shoe silhouettes this spring and summer, cause these shoe trends are experimental. Chunky flip-flops, slip-on clogs, and basic mules are all the rage, but if you’re worried these trends may be a little

too much for you, a strappy open-toe heel will still keep you looking chic and stylish. Accessory Trends More chunkiness is being seen in rings. Accessory brand La Maso has perfected this trend and their ring designs have been all over Instagram for a couple of months now. With bright and fun colors, this trend will be sticking with us for some time. Silk scarves can also be used to tie around the head as a hair accessory, and even played around with for makeshift tops. Woven and straw bags usually come back around this time of year, and spring/summer 2021 will be no different. These purses are perfect for a beach day or a nice afternoon stroll in the park.

Larson becomes pop’s“Poster Girl”

Clothing Trends Once again, we cannot escape the hold that early 2000s fashion has on the industry at the moment. Flare leggings and pants, halter tops, and low-waisted mini skirts are all back in style and are some of the major trends that are already emerging. The flare legging in particular has been a controversial trend, as many of us get flashbacks to 2012 to Victoria’s Secret PINK. But, Emma Chamberlain was seen rocking them, so that can only mean they are officially back in style. Halter tops and mini skirts alike are also remnants of the past and give the feeling of nostalgia and playfulness. Lastly, short shorts are out, and long, oversized dad shorts are in. Think Bermuda shorts that you were forced to wear at age eight, but cute.

Prints, prints, more prints! What better way to express feelings of hope and joy than bold prints and patterns? To no surprise, we are taking inspiration from the 2000s with swirl prints, Hawaiian-style florals, and repeating prints. Printed pants in particular will be staples that can spruce up any outfit. House of Sunny has recently revealed a matching halter top and pant set with a blue-green swirl print that is circulating the internet fast, and many have already gotten their hands on the iconic pieces. Printed tankinis from the early 2000s capture the bold printed halter top perfectly if you’re not looking to splurge, and many of these styles can be found at your local thrift store.

AUDREY ABBATE 1851 staff

Swedish singer Zara Larsson released her twelve-track LP “Poster Girl” on March 5. Besides Larsson, there are some great songwriters on this album like Julia Michaels, Ian Kirkpatrick, Marshmello, etc. Here’s a list of some tracks to listen to. “Love Me Land” - This track has a cinematic instrumental element to it that makes it complete. It’s a dance track that was appropriately placed as the first song and the album’s lead single. It’s been out since July, but it’s criminally underrated. “WOW” - You may have heard this song in a commercial before “Poster Girl”. My preference is her remix with Sabrina Carpenter instead, it made it more interesting to listen to, I also suggest watching her EMA performance. “FFF”(Falling for a Friend) - If the title of this track is familiar to you, it’s the same as a track by Bebe Rehxa, but has a completely different meaning. Falling for a Friend is a great song, it’s got a 70’s disco vibe to its beat. The catchy beat is topped off with Zara’s powerhouse vocals

towards the end. The very talented singer-songwriter Julia Michaels worked on this track with Larsson. “Need Someone” - This track is about conflicting feelings about letting someone go, but yearning for them at the same time. This song describes the feeling of enjoying one’s company, but not needing it because you know you’re happy. It has catchy piano and synthesized beats throughout. “Right Here”- This track grows on you as you keep listening. There are very risque lyrics about using drugs and sex to get the attention of a partner who won’t listen. The music includes an enjoyable dance/EDM beat throughout that deserves more attention. This song has more to offer than what it gave. Similar to Dua Lipa, Zara seems to be participating in the 2020’s disco comeback. Surprisingly, hits like “All the time” were not included in the American release of this album. But, it was smart to release this album in early spring because some of these tracks are backyard-quarantine-worthy.

GRAPHIC BY EMMA INGENOHL


10

March 2021

The 1851 Chronicle

Sports

GNAC competition is back for spring

PAT CARBONE 1851 staff

On March 8, the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) released a statement approving the 2021 spring sports season with limited conference play. The news comes after a year-long hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Beginning in mid-March, the GNAC sponsored play for baseball, men’s and women’s lacrosse, and softball. The sponsorship means these sports have enough GNAC schools opting-in to compete this spring. Men’s volleyball and men’s and women’s track and field are competing with limited participation. All GNAC competitions have set protocols that include no spectators in attendance, however, all Lasell events will be live-streamed for students and families to watch. President Michael Alexander is a member of the GNAC Presidents’ Council, composed of each president from all 13 schools that make up the GNAC. Alexander spoke about the council’s decision to approve the 2021 spring season. “We met in February, and we couldn’t decide,” he said. “There was no agreement among the presidents, the staff or the athletic directors. So we had to wait longer.” One month later, the council met again, this time reaching an agreement allowing the season to take place. “[Lasell Athletics] creates great opportunities for the community to get together and watch, cheer and support their fellow students,”

said President Alexander. For the seniors and graduate students who lost their potential final collegiate year last spring, it was unknown if they would ever get another chance to represent the Lasers one more time. However, with their awarded year of eligibility, these athletes finally have their opportunity to suit up once more. Director of Athletics Kristy Walter recognizes what this season means for those returning athletes. “I think it means the world to them. I think everybody’s excited for the opportunity to get back out there,” she said. In his senior year, baseball co-captain Wyatt Sihvonen is one of those students who is prepared for this to be his last season BY MICHAEL MARUK as a Laser. Sihvoven says Lasell’s Softball team gathers between innings during the first game of a doubleheaderPHOTO on March 23 against emotions are high. “Be- Wentworth Institute of Technology. ing [in] my last year here at Lasell makes this seasaid Sihvonen. “This has been the lon- Many athletes have been open about how son very special, and being able to play gest I’ve gone without playing a full sea- emotional this season will be. It will creone last season with the same guys I’ve son, so the blood’s pumping.” ate memories for athletes, families, and been best friends with over the last four The experience of losing their sports the community as sports return after its years makes this the most important and seasons and their final year of college has longest hiatus in Lasell athletic history. meaningful season of my playing career,” created a bond between Lasell students.

Cautious attendance at pro-sport events LJ VP LAFIURA & KARISSA GAUGHAN

LJ VP LAFIURA

1851 staff

PHOTOS COURTESY OF DALTON CONRAN

Inside the TD Garden for the first game with fans back in attendance on March 26.

Over a year ago, the professional sports world shut down. As the pandemic raged on, sports fans slowly saw professional and collegiate sports return, but without an in-person audience. Many states, including Massachusetts, are now beginning to allow attendance as they see fit. Local professional teams such as the Red Sox, Bruins and Celtics are now operating at 12 percent capacity at their games in 2021. While fans will not be back in full capacity, there is still plenty of buzz around those who will be attending. “I’m extremely grateful that the NHL has allowed fans back into their stadiums so we can all watch the game we love,” said Bruins fan, senior Dalton Conran. A lifelong fan of the team, Conran is one of the many who has waited with anticipation to see the team he loves. “I was heartbroken,” he said of losing sports a year ago. “I used sports as a sort of escape mechanism when I’m having a bad day. Watching sports usually brings me out of whatever slump

Hurdles to pass for track and field 1851 staff

I’m in, so when I heard they were canceling all sports, I felt almost lost.” Conran attended the Bruins’ first home game with fans on March 25. Not allowing attendance has not only affected the fans at the stadium but also affected the players and the fans watching from home. Watching an MLB game last season, fans saw the cameras pan across empty rows and heard soundbites of fans cheering and clapping. Listening to fake fans while viewing an empty stadium is a disorienting experience and does not instill any normalcy for the athletes who thrive off fans’ energy. To keep their doors open to fans, the Red Sox have developed a health and safety program centered around cleaning, facility modifications, technological enhancement, and employee training. The ballpark staff will consistently clean “high touch” areas throughout the day and they have altered common areas such as retail locations and concessions to optimize social distancing. They have also employed technology such as mobile ordering and cameras to deter dense crowds. The Red Sox official website states, “We are also working closely with officials from Major League Baseball, State of Massachusetts and City of Boston to develop these new measures and adhere to any and all requirements issued by those authorities.” Not only will these policies promote health and safety, but they will help encourage more weary fans like junior Virginia Bry to come back to the stadium sooner rather than later. “I would like to think that I would be comfortable because I missed sports a lot, and I feel like as long as social distancing is abided by and masks are worn, that would definitely make me even more comfortable about going,” said Bry.

The sprinters train on Taylor Field ahead of their upcoming season.

When spring sports received clearance to resume playing, it felt like activities around campus were beginning to return to normal. No team has had an easy transition into play, but especially the track & field team. Between finding a venue to play and viable competition, this season will have many challenges. “We have to understand that track and field is a very unique sport,” said head coach Michael McGrane. One of the struggles track and field will face this spring is finding competition that will fit within the health and safety guidelines laid down by the state of Massachusetts and the university. According to Director of Athletics Kristy Walter, until recently, Massachusetts required that athletes quarantine upon returning to the state after leaving for an out-of-state game. This would have made away games with out-of-state programs an unrealistic possibility. Another obstacle for finding opponents is the travel time limits imposed on the team by the school’s health and safety standards. As of March 30, athletic teams will only be allowed to travel 90 minutes away from the school for the competition. “The time limit is about being on a bus, an enclosed place for an amount of time,” said Walter. “We’re limiting the hours [in contact]. We’re also limiting how many people can be on a bus.” The athletic department continues to work in tandem with the school’s COVID-19 Task Force. These regulations are open to change as the season goes on, as they have all year. “Everything we’re doing is to minimize risk,” said Walter. “Every time we change something, we’re

PHOTOS BY LJ VP LAFIURA

opening up to a little bit more risk.” Once they can find opponents, the next hurdle the team must clear is finding a location for meets. Lasell does not have track and field facilities on campus, so the team must go elsewhere for competition. A problem that arises is each venue operates with a different set of regulations. Lasell frequently works with Regis College, a fellow Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) school that was not, until recently, open for competition. “A lot of people are very restrictive about who comes to their campus and how they’re testing,” said Walter. “But Coach McGrane has been great about finding other opportunities.” Thanks to McGrane and the athletic department, the schedule for the 2021 season is filling out. The first meet of the season will be on Friday, April 9 against Regis, followed by Sunday, April 18, against Suffolk. This is in addition to a new agreement to allow the team to practice at Brandeis University. “We’re working hard to get to some point of competition because that’s why we’ve been practicing since October,” McGrane said. Although progress has been made since March 2020, there is still a long way to go because these situations have been difficult to navigate. “We kept saying there’s light at the end of the tunnel and it sure did pay off,” said junior Co-captain, Nick Gird. “Coach often said better days ahead and it seems like we are entering those times.”


The 1851 Chronicle

March 2021

Sports

11

Kelley Sundberg to lead women’s b-ball TAYLOR VILES

sports editor

PHOTO BY TAYLOR VILES

Sundberg smiles from her office as she prepares for her first season as a Laser.

Following the resignation of former women’s basketball head coach Todd Montana in August, the Athletic Department began their search for a new leader for the program. Because there was no winter season, this process wasn’t rushed and the hiring team aimed

to be methodical in their selection. According to Director of Athletics Kristy Walter, the department began the search in November. “We received a high number of qualified candidates,” said Walter. “We [eventually] narrowed it down to our three top candidates and invited them to campus.” Among those candidates was Kelley Sundberg, a graduate of Gannon University in Erie, Pennsylvania. Sundberg dominated the court during her collegiate career, averaging 26.5 points per game (PPG) over four years (2010-2014). After graduating from Gannon, Sundberg stayed in Pennsylvania. Her first coaching experience was at Mansfield University. In 2018, she was hired by Seton Hill University where she stayed until she came to Lasell for her first head coaching job. The hiring announcement was made on March 2. Two things drove her to apply for the job at Lasell. “I was looking for something closer to home and wanted to be a head coach and this definitely fit that mold,” she said. Walter says one of the contributing factors to choosing the Connecticut native, was her ability to be a role model to student-athletes. Additionally, “her experience, her enthusiasm

and passion for the game,” said Walter, on Sundberg’s ability to stand out. “She has a great vision and wants to build a program.” Sundberg was an Exercise Science major at her Alma Mater but says she couldn’t find anything interesting to her in that area. “I didn’t find something I enjoyed as much as coaching and basketball,” she said. It was at Seton Hill where Sundberg really began to take her coaching abilities to the next level and looked at head coach Mark Katarski as a role model. “He has a successful program and he has a lot of ownership to what he does...” said Sundberg. “He doesn’t do the thing that everybody else is doing just because everybody else is doing it. He is himself.” Sundberg says this is what she wants to do at Lasell. “I want to…[put my] stamp on the program,” she said. Katarski said it was apparent Sundberg would eventually move on to be a Head Coach somewhere. She is a tremendous listener, according to Katarski, and has a knack for the truth. “She has a way of both speaking the truth and hearing the truth in a very unique way,” he said. “I think that our players grew to really respect that… It was the thing that I valued the most about her.”

Katarski expects Sundberg to thrive at Lasell as she did at Seton Hill because of her involvement on campus. She was on the university’s diversity and inclusion committee, she helped to start a wellness committee on campus, and she even taught a one-credit course. “This is somebody who is more than just the coach,” he said. “I think she’ll become, through her own efforts, a valued member of the athletic department and I think the university as a whole.” At Lasell, Sundberg looks forward to bringing the women’s basketball team back to a competitive climate by utilizing her experience in the sport. She hopes to execute a faster pace of play while also focusing on a lockdown defensive gameplan. The team hasn’t boasted a winning season since 2005-2006, and hasn’t made the playoffs since 2015-2016, but with Sundberg’s leadership and youth, a possible return to excellence in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference is possible. It might not be next season, but “that is the direction we’re headed,” she said. “We want to be the top two or three competitors in the conference regularly.”

Behind the birth of “Boomer the Torchbearer,” 12 KAIE QUIGLEY & RUTH KEHINDE features editor

& digital editor

The community celebrated the twelfth birthday of school mascot Boomer on March 24 at an event held by the Student Alumni Association (SAA) in Valentine Dining Hall. The event was complete with decorations, birthday cake, blue cotton candy, and a cookie monster ice cream bar. Boomer was born in 2009 when they were unveiled by President Michael Alexander at a rally in the Athletic Center. Hundreds were in attendance to illuminate the dark space with flashlights, resembling the tradition of the Torchlight Parade. Towards the end of President Alexander’s speech, Boomer was introduced to the community. The idea of Boomer was a work in progress, taking years to fully create. After changing from a two-year to a four-year women’s college in 1989, Lasell applied to be a Division III National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) member to improve athletic programs for incoming students. At that time, a committee was formed to create a name, logo, and mascot for the school’s teams. Vice President of Enrollment Management Kathleen O’Connor was a member of this committee along with two coaches, two student-athletes, Director of Athletics Kristy Walter, and Chief Marketing Officer Chris Lynette. Discussions of becoming co-ed had already begun, so according to O’Connor, “the name had to be gender-neutral. The name had to be reflective of our history. The name was very important.” O’Connor said the committee agreed the

PHOTO BY RUTH KEHINDE

Boomer’s smile and torch shine brightly as he celebrates his twelfth birthday.

name would be “Lasers” not only due to its gender neutrality but because “if you look at what lasers are, they are used in the medical field for precision and accuracy, which is what you’d want your athletes to do. There’s [also] the speed of a laser, which you would want of your athletes.” The symbol of a laser is also meant to

PHOTO BY KAIE QUIGLEY

Boomer’s birthday cake, and other blue themed sweet treats were available for students at the event.

be a modern-day representation of the “lamp of knowledge” appearing on the school’s seal. When it came to deciding on a mascot years later, the committee took the same approach; keeping it gender-neutral and having it reflect the history of the institution. According to O’Connor, “Boomer” derives from those

who founded the college with Edward Lasell in the 1840s. “The people who put up the money to buy the land, and start the college… that gave money to invest in building the college, were real estate tycoons that are commonly known as boomers.” Also part of the mascot, often seen being held by Boomer, is the iconic torch, a symbol of Lasell. “It’s about passing knowledge on… it’s lighting the darkness ahead of us, so that we light the world and show knowledge,” said O’Connor. This sentiment is portrayed at the ceremonial Torchlight Parade, which is held annually for seniors before commencement. As an homage to the ceremony, Boomer’s full name is “Boomer the Torchbearer.” According to Walter, Boomer makes appearances at “play-off games, opening games, open houses, Lasell Day, Move-in Day, Family, Friends and Alumni Weekend, alumni events and other campus events when invited.” Walter also said, “I do think that at some events, Boomer increases school spirit.” To further ensure that Boomer is not assigned a gender, those that wear the suit at events remain anonymous and stay silent so that inferences of gender cannot be made based on the voice or appearance of the person inside. However, “they interact with the crowd, they take pictures with fans, and [they] cheer for the teams,” said Walter. When not attending events, Boomer resides in storage in the Athletic Center.

Campus-wide sports springing back into action

PHOTOS BY MICHAEL MARUK

Women’s lacrosse and softball at some of their first games of the season.


12

March 2021

Sports

The 1851 Chronicle

Campus-wide sports springing back into action, cont’d

PHOTOS BY MICHAEL MARUK

Different angles of women’s lacrosse and softball games along with the intramural crew team getting ready for its spring season at the first practice on the water.

Profile for Lasell College

March 2021  

March 2021  

Advertisement