Each month the Residence Life Office recognizes students from each residence area and a Resident Assistant who go above and beyond to contribute to the building of residence areas committed to academic excellence, individual student development, and a strong loving Christian community. The Stonehill Stars program recognizes the positive work that so many members of the College community are doing. Residence Life is proud to announce the following Stonehill Stars. Click here if you would like to see past winners of Stonehill Stars!
March Stonehill Star Winners!
Community Assistant of the Month: Greg Shaw
Professor Shaw made his way to the common room of Kingston / Lowell on Tuesday night ready and eager to lead a guided meditation session. On the surface, this may not seem all that special. However, one week prior, Professor Shaw had been so swamped with work and his other responsibilities that our program as it was initially planned slipped his mind entirely. It would have been just as easy and understandable for Professor Shaw to indicate that he had too many things on his plate as a means of apologizing and moving forward but I am thrilled to report that he went in the complete opposite direction. Professor Shaw ensured the program was rescheduled arrived with great energy and enthusiasm. He talked about his background in meditation and led us in a five minute exercise. The stress of the mid-semester crunch evaporated from the room immediately. We continued to have a very fruitful conversation after the program with the residents present about the stresses and pressures in our lives, the role Stonehill College has played in our personal development and the changing dynamic of our culture with respect to the recent headlines about sexual assault. We even found time to explore the evolving guest policy through a very open and honest dialogue. Professor Shaw used this program as an opportunity to not only show us the power of silence through meditation but he went to great lengths to connect with the residents who were present on an individual level. For these reasons and so many more, Professor Shaw is certainly deserving of the title, CA of the Month.
Program of the Month: St. Patrick's Day Celebration, Christina Scanlon
Christina Scanlon was able to bring the St. Patrick's Day spirit to the Courts. Her program had residents attend from all four of her houses in addition to other Courts residents. She brought treats and even had some of her residents make St. Patrick's Day themed cupcakes and cookies. She taught us all a bit about the history of St. Patrick's Day and Irish Step Dance and gave us all a flier with additional information. She, along with some other experienced Irish Step dancers, taught us all some basic steps. Everyone was so engaged and tried their hardest to get the steps right. Christina was so patient and encouraging with each of the residents. Her program was such a success that at the end, many residents asked if she could teach them more.
Resident Assistant of the Month : Paris Volpe
Paris Volpe absolutely rocks the village. It is no secret that along with all of the stresses of being an RA, the village adds another layer of challenge. It often is viewed as an area associated with little potential for community vibes, difficulty in developing connections with all houses, and challenges being a visible presence in all areas. Paris had completely smashed this stigma. After recognizing that not all residents may feel comfortable entering another house to find her with questions or concerns, Paris implemented an online system where residents can either anonymously or openly submit anything that they may need to speak to Paris about. When telling me about this system, Paris stated that she did it because she felt bad that only about half of her residents from other houses felt comfortable going into Centerville to find her. What really struck me were the incredible standards to which she held herself. Many would find the fact that they can make one house home to other who do not live there quite an accomplishment, but Paris truly did not want to stop until every resident felt included. Her dedication to her residents shows both in and out of the halls, when residents will often call “hi mom!” to her when seeing her around campus.
Paris also has an unprecedented relationship with her CA. Although her programming plans with her CA have fallen through more times that would be ideal this year, she continues to maintain a positive attitude and is in frequent contact with him. In having one-on-ones with her this semester, every time we meet, I find myself running to Emily or Janice just to let them know how great Paris is doing, she never ceases to impress me. For these reasons, I find Paris to be an ideal Stonehill Star!
Residents of the Month
Michelle Dander- Commonwealth and Colonial Courts
This month the Courts would like to award Michelle Dander the resident of the month title! Michelle, who lives in Quincy in the Colonial Courts, is constantly exemplifying positivity and kindness for the entire community! There is absolutely never a dull moment when Michelle is around! She’s always conscientious and always asks people how they’re doing. I know that since coming back from being abroad in Spain, she’s always making someone smile. In addition, Michelle is also the president of Model UN and organized their weeklong upcoming conference to New York City! She is also one of the founding members and on the e board for the Sylvia Plath Society for Women in Politics, and volunteers at the HOPE House with Best Buddies. Michelle is absolutely always ready to help every member of the community and when around her you’re reminded of her thoughtful, hard working, sassy, and fun personality! Michelle is a Stonehill Star because the Courts are made a much better community just by having Michelle!
Melanie Smeaton- O' Hara
Melanie Smeaton has taken every opportunity in front of her and ran with it. She applied for Resident Assistant but unfortunately did not get it but she did not let that stop her. She went out of her comfort zone and applied for the desk attendant position. She got the position and will be going all over campus for the job. This allows Melanie to continue to grow as an individual and get even more involved in the community. Although Melanie has had some bumps in the road, she has not let anything stop her. She has proven to be a hard working determined individual.
Jackie Oleksak-Holy Cross Center
Jackie deserves resident of the month because she is always going out of her way for others and putting them before herself. She is constantly doing kind things such as writing encouraging notes and leaving inspirational quotes under people's doors. She is one of those people that will always stop when she sees you and ask how your day is going with a genuine interest. Her smile could make anyone's day and if you get to know her you'll find out that she is one of the most humble people you'll ever meet. Jackie is a perfect example of the type of community that we are all about here in the Sem.
Tara Daniels- New Hall
Tara's hard work for Relay for Life is hard to go unnoticed. Tara is constantly talking up the events for Relay as well as helping organize the ins and outs of the events to make it the most successful week it can be. Despite her busy schedule and work load, it is rare to see Tara without a smile, brightening someones day whether it be in her suite or just in the hallways. She is always quick to help a friend in a crisis or use her connections to help make someone else's life easier. Tara's suite mates have expressed their thankfulness for her organization of suite dinners and her RA said, "Tara is the type of resident every RA prays for."