Posts Tagged ‘Why Holy Cross?’

A Visit to St. James by Tom Severo

Friday, December 18th, 2015

 

(inspired by “A Visit from Saint Nicholas” by C. Clement Moore)

 

‘Twas the week before Christmas and on Mt. Saint James

Crusaders competed in holiday games

Their jerseys of purple they donned with great pride

Secure in the knowledge that “God’s on our side!”

 

And yes, there were finals- exams and reports

But a welcome distraction was Holy Cross sports

See here on the hill, we’re a spirited crowd

And we make it well known, rooting hearty and loud

 

Sometimes up at the Hart we can cause quite a clatter,

When showing support for our dear alma mater

As our rec center, that’s where the madness ensues

High on top of the hill, near the statue of ‘Cooz

bob

photo by John L. Buckingham

 

Where Division I athletes fight hard for their school

On the court, on the ice, in the weight room and pool

It’s potent, this passion our campus asserts

Student bodies adorned with “HC” on their shirts

 

We’re a small enough school, so we know all the players

(And Catholic, so cheering comes often with prayers)

Our super-fan crowd puts opponents to shame

As we scream and chant loudly for each sport by name:

 

“Go Baseball! Go Football! Go Field Hockey, too!

Go Soccer! Go Tennis, Cross Country, and Crew!

Let the hockey games end in a bench clearing brawl!

Let our basketball team never give up the ball!

Capture

photo by Thomas Rettig

Let us fight till the end, never fail or fatigue

And prove who’s the best in the Patriot League.

It’s Cru-Sader Nation. It has been for years

With true adoration from pundits and peers

 

Track program’s so fast, they make Fios seem slow

And the crew team will beat you six times in a…… “row”

Our baseballers do it with K’s and with ease

And the golfers get through it with their expert-tees.

 

Holy Cross! Whoa, lacrosse! Your strong rep is deserved

Played our volleyball team? Then I guess you got served!

The same goes for tennis, a team that we….. “love”

And cause quite a racket when speaking thereof

 

Our skaters can keep up with any Cannuck

Not since Robin Goodfellow’ve I seen better Puck!

Think you’re besting our divers? Pft, don’t hold your breath!

They oust podium spots like they’re Lady Macbeth

hockey

photo by Mike Malyszko

Your swim team’s all wet, ours is running amok

Only stroke that could beat em’s a stroke of dumb luck

Football here’s in the bag, other teams in the sack

Bet two bits that we’d win and got my quarter-back

 

And basketball? Please. Now don’t get me started

That’s a legend round here, our support is whole-hearted

I remember a game, about this time of year

From centuries past……….as an undergrad here

 

The Hart was electric (acoustic, the band)

And just before things really got out of hand…

The clock, it expired. And with it, the din

The match-up had ended (of course with a win)

 

The bleachers grew quiet, the stands stopped their shake

The students went home for their holiday break

But I heard them exclaim as they walked to their cah

“Crusaders forever!” and “Chu Chu Rah Rah!”

Capture

image, author’s own

Student Post: A Kickoff to winter events

Monday, December 14th, 2015

by Catherine Phelan, ’18

tree lighting 1

photo by Thomas Rettig

Winter is here on the hill! For Holy Cross students this season is filled with fun activities. As a sophomore on campus, I am excited for the events that will take place this winter. One of my favorite activities took place last week on December 3rd. The annual Tree Lighting Ceremony is hosted by the Purple Key Society here on campus. There are tables with cookies, hot chocolate, and coffee to get all of us in the holiday spirit.

This year my friends and I headed to the O’Kane porch and where we were greeted with carolers and joyful Christmas music. The Holy Cross Marching Band performed various Christmas songs and the Holy Cross Chamber Choir sang. Santa also made a guest appearance! Many students, faculty, and members of the Worcester community took pictures with him. While the different groups sang, my friends and I created some homemade cards for American soldiers abroad. The crowd sang along with the Nativity School of Worcester’s performers.

One of my friends is in the acapella group Fools on the Hill and it was great to see her group perform. After choir sang Silent Night, a prayer was said, the tree was blessed, and then there was light!

tree lighting 2

photo by Thomas Rettig

The tree was lit and the nativity scene was glowing under the lights. This is one of my favorite winter activities because it brings together the Worcester community and the students of Holy Cross. There is a sense of unity as we all sing along to the songs we all know and it gets us all into the holiday spirit.

I am also looking forward to the following holiday activities:

‘Tis The Season: Holy Cross Dining from Dec. 7-11 welcomes winter with a variety of our favorite seasonal flavors. Visit any Holy Cross Dining location to celebrate with us.

Holiday Decorating Contest: Inter-House Council celebrates the Holiday season with their annual Hall Decorating Contest. The event will be judged by a team of faculty and administrators!

Winter Weekend Carnival: On December 12th students can take a study break and come to Crossroads for CAB’s annual Winter Weekend Carnival, featuring stuff your own bears, festive holiday treats, your favorite holiday music, and much more!

Advent Festival of Lessons and Carols: On December 10th the College Choirs and Chamber Orchestra in collaboration with the chaplain’s office present the annual Festival of Lessons and Carols, a Holy Cross classic.  The evening features nine biblical readings that tell the Advent and Christmas story, anthems by the choir and orchestra that will illuminate the readings, and carol singing.

 

Online Chats at Holy Cross

Friday, November 20th, 2015

students studying 2

photo by Michael Malyszko

Throughout the year, we in Admissions host live online chats as a way for prospective students to learn more about the College.  We believe that these conversations provide an excellent opportunity for applicants to ask questions that they may have about social activities, academics, admissions, or life in Worcester.  Our second chat of the fall happened earlier this week, and we are so fortunate to see a great turnout of prospective students and current Crusaders!  Over the course of three hours, we enjoyed lots of interesting conversations and had the opportunity to connect with students all over the country (and even a few who stayed up late into the night to chat with us from other countries!).

 

For those who did not get the chance to join us, I wanted to share some responses from one of our Outreach volunteers, a first-year student named Brian.  In addition to helping us out in Admissions, Brian serves as the class secretary, participates in a variety of pre-law activities, and is involved with campus ministry.  He also has his own blog!  Below are some of his answers to students’ questions from the November 18th chat:

 

– on diversity: Holy Cross embraces all difficult questions. Of course, then, we discuss diversity and issues of race, gender, and sexual orientation unabashedly! In fact, we just finished Unity Week — a weeklong series of panels and events focusing on campus issues, specifically, and broader societal problems about diversity. Just two nights ago, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and undocumented immigrant Jose Antonio Vargas headlined a provocative evening…Holy Cross has a long history of supporting diverse students. This legacy dates back to Father Brooks and the mentorship of a young black southerner named Clarence Thomas, who, along with twenty or so other black students, was recruited to Holy Cross. Clarence Thomas now serves on the US Supreme Court as an Associate Justice.

 

– favorite thing about Holy Cross: the people! Whether it is the professors or administrators, classmates or staff, the people are unrivaled in their kindness, devotedness, and commitment to excellence. Least favorite thing about Holy Cross: that I’ll be limited (hopefully, that is) to just four years here; therefore, I’ll be limited in taking advantage of the abundant opportunities the College offers.

 

– on what sets the College apart: excellence in all areas since 1843. HC is also peerless — the only Catholic, top-tier, Jesuit, liberal arts college devoted solely to undergrads…so many vibrant discussions, representing such diverse ideas, but based on mutual respect and a quest for truth in all things.

 

Our next chat is Wednesday, December 9 and the main topic is “Life on the Hill.” We hope that you will join us!

 

(images from the Digital Asset Management System for the College of the Holy Cross)

Favorite Fall Traditions at Holy Cross

Friday, October 23rd, 2015

 

Fall is a special time of year for many, with days of apple picking, leaf peeping, pumpkin carving, and football cheering.  For Holy Cross students, the season is filled with all sorts of fun events.  I asked the social media interns about some of their favorite fall things on the Hill, and here it what they said!

 

Homecoming1

photo, author’s own

Mackenzie: Fall at Holy Cross is one of the most beautiful seasons on the hill…during this time of the year, the ivy on the buildings begins to change colors and the campus is truly transformed.  One of my favorite fall traditions at Holy Cross is Harvest Fest at Kimball.  One evening at the beginning of fall, the dining hall has all kinds of seasonal treats such as apple cider (both hot and cold!), candy apples, cupcakes, and cookies (decorated for fall, of course). It is a night that students surely do not want to miss!

 

 

 

 

 

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photo, author’s own

 

 

Madison: Freshman year my friends and I were characters from Toy Story which was my favorite costume!  We had all the main characters, and made most of our own costumes.  We even had one of our friends be the toy horse!  My friend and I were the Slinky Dog and stayed attached for the entire night with a wire connecting the two of us!  I am excited to see what we come up with this year!

April Events!

Friday, April 17th, 2015

 

PP PP 2

Today is April 17th.  It could just be any other Friday, but on Mt. St. James, today is important for a few reasons. First of all, it’s the last work day before our Accepted Students’ Open House on Sunday, April 19th!  Open House is a great opportunity for admitted students and their families to meet other potential Crusaders and current Crusaders, to interact with faculty and administrators, and to experience life at the College.  Although registration has closed, all accepted students and their families are welcome to attend!

Another reason why today, April 17th, is important is because today is Purple Pride Day.  Students in the Purple Key Society are working today to promote school spirit (something Holy Cross students have in incredible amounts).  I hope that you enjoy this fun video showing one student’s journey around campus:

I am so grateful to be part of such a supportive, dynamic, and fun community!  I encourage you to explore the College of the Holy Cross–whether it is in person, on our site, or on YouTube, Twitter, or Facebook.  Additionally, we invite admitted students to tweet us pictures of themselves in purple with #HC2019!  Please join the conversation!

 

 

Cheers to our Admissions Ambassadors!

Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

As my colleague tweeted earlier this month, 50 students will be spending part of their winter break visiting their former high schools as a way to help promote the College!  We in Admissions are so fortunate to have many great volunteers helping us.  Students serve as greeters in the waiting room talking to prospective students and their families; as tour guides trekking across campus with large groups of visitors; and now as ambassadors speaking to college counselors and students at their old high schools.  I wanted to share with you some of the responses that we received from students applying to participate in the admissions ambassador program.  On the maps below I have marked the ambassadors’ home states and countries!

map

 

Capture

student from Illinois: In just a few semesters, Holy Cross has challenged me academically and personally, pushing me to discover who I am, reflect upon what I want to be in the world, and search what I can do for those most in need. I have found on Mount St. James a tight-knit community and a supportive, warm environment.

student from Minnesota: Not only has living on the East Coast…been a great learning and cultural experience, but I have also come to appreciate all of the aspects that make a Holy Cross education so worthwhile: small class sizes, diverse subjects, close relationships with professors, undergraduate research, and most importantly, a commitment to cultivating “men and women for and with others.”

student from Texas: Holy Cross has given me opportunities that I never imagined I would have. I will be studying abroad in Argentina in the spring, I participate in psychology research, I made m[y] own student organization, and I have met and dined with physicist Neil deGrasse Tyson.

student from Arkansas: I have loved living in a new part of the country, getting to travel around the Northeast, go to a college that has rigorous academics, play volleyball with my best friends while representing the college, and so much more.

student from Georgia: Since coming to Holy Cross, I have risen through the ranks of The Crusader and will be one of the Co-Editor-in-Chiefs next semester. Also, I have strengthened my spiritual life while serving as the Communion Ministry Coordinator as well as participating in immersion trips. My love for biology has been strengthened through on-campus research investigating diabetes–the skills I acquired…helped me land an internship over the past summer…at Emory University Medical School.

student from Washington: I have been exposed to many different fields in my studies, but all of these challenge you to develop your ability to reason, write, and express yourself.  Furthermore, my experience in the Washington Semester was invaluable.  Not only was I able to apply my classroom knowledge in a professional capacity at the State Department, but I was able to interact with policymakers, United States Senators, and Supreme Court Justices.

student from China: Because I am an international student and an ESL as well, I got extra help on my writing from professors and writer’s workshop. I felt like HC really cares about its students. In this semester, I met with my peer mentor…once a week, my advisor…twice a month,…and [my] class dean once a month. [They] not only cared about my life [at Holy Cross], but also they provided constructive suggestions.

student from Japan: During classes which revolved heavily around student and faculty discussions, from my psych class to even class about Buddhism, there were plenty moments where I was able to offer an unique set of perspectives, just because I grew up in a completely different kind of society with differing tradition, values, and identity. I strongly believe that with the rise of transparency and globalization, willingness to suspend your ideology and values while trying to understand the complete opposite of it is an important skill to have…My time at Holy Cross has been a wonderful one so far, and I’m very proud to be here.

Why Holy Cross? We let you write on the walls.

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

Zachary WielgusIt began as one of those ideas that sound good in your head but don’t quite manifest in real life.

Create a poster that we ask all visiting admitted students to sign to create a visual welcome and introduction to the Holy Cross community. How would we print something that large? How would we get all — or even the majority — of the visiting admitted students to sign? How much of it will be left blank?

Sometimes you get lucky, I guess. It’s been a wonderful point of pride to welcome students who arrive for a campus tour or day visit and, after greeting them with a congratulations and Holy Cross pennant, directing them to “The Wall.” Multiple Holy Cross students corralled the hundreds of admitted students at Accepted Student Open House on April 13 to “sign the wall.” Moms and dads excitedly gaped at just how far some students had come (Boise, Idaho, and Beijing, China, two clear winners), while potential Class of 2018 Crusaders found classmates and neighbors also occupying the same 28-square-feet of wall.

Open House 11

This is what I love about Holy Cross. First, the ability to let small ideas morph into wonderful and meaningful actions. This is also how Montserrat went from optional First Year Program to required (and well-loved) first-year seminar. This is how so many students create their own major or secure an internship never-before pursued.

But second, watching The Wall fill up with the rainbow colors of excited students from literally all over the world paints a brilliant picture of our student body. Holy Cross will introduce you to people who think differently, speak differently, learn differently, and hail from cities and states you have never visited. That’s what college should be: a change from your four years of high school, not only in class offerings and bedrooms but also in the strangers with whom you connect from all corners of the globe.

Open House 12 Open House 13 Open House 14

Open House 15

 

Sign The Wall. Leave your mark. So many others have.

Zach Wielgus

Assistant Director of Admissions

What You Missed

Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

Thanks to the timing of the Easter holiday, Holy Cross — as well as a number of other New England institutions — held its Accepted Student Open House this past weekend. Nearly 2,000 visitors made their way to campus for the biggest, most energetic, and most informative day of the year. Current students cheered for potential new classmates on their way in. Drawstring bags and sunglasses were handed out. Members of the Class 0f 2018 signed our Congratulations Banner.

And this was all before they entered the Registration area inside the basketball arena!

The rest of the day included dozens of extracurricular and student life organizations available at our Browsing Fair; over 45 presentations from academic departments, pre-professional programs, and offices such as Study Abroad and Career Planning; a quick separating of student from parent for an hour-long panel where any and all questions can be asked without judgment or embarrassment; a delicious lunch buffet (with a surprise visit from the Goodtime Marching Band!); interspersed performances from a capella groups and dance teams; and closing comments from Director of Admissions Ann McDermott and President Fr. Boroughs.

A lot happened, and many stayed until the very end.

But in case you missed it, here are just a few pictures from the day:

A Saturday night welcome reception for students hailing from beyond 5 hours.

A Saturday night welcome reception for students hailing from beyond 5 hours.

The Congratulations banner is filling up with names and hometowns!

The Congratulations banner is filling up with names and hometowns!

Now that's true happiness.

Now that’s true happiness.

High school friends reunite with current Crusaders!

High school friends reunite with current Crusaders!

Lunch in the Fieldhouse.

Lunch in the Fieldhouse.

Families listen to a presentation on Study Abroad in Dinand Library.

Families listen to a presentation on Study Abroad in Dinand Library.

Keeping energized in Hogan.

Keeping energized in Hogan.

Visions students seeing one of Worcester's gathering spots, Elm Park.

Visions students seeing one of Worcester’s gathering spots, Elm Park.

Matt and the Crusader bonded.

Matt and the Crusader bonded.

You know you want one.

You know you want one.

Why Holy Cross? The constant pursuit.

Thursday, April 10th, 2014

Daniel-Weagle_postI love Holy Cross for the College’s approach to educating the entire person (known in the Jesuit world as Cura Personalis, or “care of the entire person”). As a student, I remember spending many a weekday night tucked away in my own cozy carrel in Dinand Library. After a long study session or writing rally, I would head back to my residence hall. I can still distinctly recall the smell and taste of the night air as I walked through the doors of Dinand and onto the moonlit common.

 

There was a contagious feeling in the atmosphere that was indescribable (but for the sake of this blog, let’s call it “neon-electric, caffeinated exuberance”).  Each student I passed had the same driven look in his eye and knowing smile across his face: a smile that revealed an inner, quiet confidence and personal pride in the pursuit of education. We were all proud to attend an elite academic institution where we were challenged each day to be the best we could be by the inspirational people around us; our nationally-recognized, nurturing faculty, our caring, supportive staff, and our creative, insightful peers pushed us to be better versions of ourselves.

 

At midnight, after hours of studying for exams, writing capstone papers, planning events for student clubs/organizations, it would be easy for a typical student to put his head down and trudge across campus to collapse into his bed.

But Holy Cross students are not typical students. Holy Cross students are more complete because they are never satisfied. What I mean by that is that our students are always seeking, always searching, always pushing themselves to be the best version of who they know they are (with the support and gentle guidance of the entire campus). Simply put, Holy Cross students find value in cura personalis and I loved (and still do love) being surrounded by such complete individuals.

Why Holy Cross? The smiles and thank you’s.

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

As many members of the admissions staff write their biggest answer to “Why Holy Cross,” it just so happened two Associate Directors of Admissions — Andrew Carter and Lynn Verrecchia — separately chose topics that blend quite well together: the general personality and affect of the student body.

 

6a00e54ed0db8e8833010536f8f30b970b-800wiRecently at a college fair, I was asked a most intriguing question by a current high school junior – “What’s your  favorite thing about Holy Cross students?”

This is a great question – a departure from the usual questions about average GPA’s, average class size and overall student enrollment.

After a brief moment of thought, my answer was simple – Holy Cross students say “thank you.”

And it’s not just that they say “thank you,” but that they have a reason to say “thank you.”

This is a campus that values door holding.  And not just door holding for the delivery man carrying a stack of boxes – but door holding for anyone, any time.

The Jesuit principle of “Cura Personalis” encourages all of us to consider and to care for the entire person and while that influences the way we teach and learn and think about our world, it also reminds us that we are not alone – we are not alone in this world, in this moment or in this doorway.

And that is what I’m reminded of every day when I walk around this campus – Holy Cross students know they are not alone and while there might now always be someone to hold the door for, they always pause and check.

And for that pause, that awareness, I say, “thank you.”

Andrew Carter

Associate Director of Admissions

 

 

LynnVerrecchia.BLOG2Why HC? For the smiles.

When I first visited Holy Cross as a prospective student, one thing stood out to me. Everyone was smiling–at one another, to themselves, and at me. I as looking for a sign that this was the right place for me. What I read in those smiles was that HC students like one another, are content with themselves, and are eager to welcome newcomers.

As a student, I certainly found myself smiling–and being smiled at–a lot. As an alumnus, I find myself grinning on the highway when in traffic behind a car sporting a Holy Cross sticker and in line at the grocery store behind someone wearing a Holy Cross sweatshirt. I’ve made fast friends with other parents simply because of a shared affinity for our alma mater. Nothing brings a smile to my face faster than hearing my 3-year-old carefully spell out H-O-L-Y-C-R-O-S-S!

Holy Cross–it can even make you smile in traffic. That’s why.

Lynn Verrecchia ’01

Associate Director of Admissions