Hockey, Company & A Spotlight on Montserrat

Hello Holy Cross community! I hope everyone has had a great week! This week was filled with lots of new adventures and exciting experiences as always, namely attending the Holy Cross Department of Theatre & Dance production of Company, which was held at the new Prior Performing Arts Center, as well as the two Holy Cross Men’s Hockey games against Niagara University at the Hart Center at the Luth Athletic Complex.

If I haven’t mentioned this before, I am a HUGE fan of theatre- I participated in theatre all throughout high school and found the most loving and supportive community there, and am a firm believer in the fact that the magic of live theatre is simply irreplaceable. So I was thrilled, to say the least, to see Company last weekend at Holy Cross, especially when I had two friends in the ensemble, one friend in the main cast and even one friend in the band! They all did a FANTASTIC job, to no one’s surprise, and being able to see Holy Cross’ rendition of a Sondheim classic was such a joyous event for all involved. Congratulations to the cast & crew for two wildly successful weekends of shows!

Additionally, this week I checked off another Holy Cross bucket list item and attended my first hockey game on campus! The men’s team played Niagara University on both Thursday (the Cousy Cup game) and Friday, and my dad, who is a Niagara alum, came up to Worcester on Thursday to see them play! Similarly to my experience with football last semester, I knew close to nothing about hockey coming into the game (other than the basic objectives), but I still had such a blast cheering on the Crusaders, so much so that I went back the next night to see them play (and win!) again with friends! Will “Hockey Marie” be the new title for this semester? It’s hard to say, but as of now I can happily say that my excitement towards the game is far from being extinguished.

Finally, I’d like to do something a little different in this post and cast a spotlight on one of the most memorable aspects of my freshman year thus far- my Montserrat seminar. Every first-year student at Holy Cross is required to participate in a Montserrat seminar, which is one of the earliest community building blocks for first-years. Each Montserrat course falls under one of the six ‘clusters’ – Self, Contemporary Challenges, Global Society (my cluster), Natural World, Divine and Core Human Questions, and the people that live in the same hall as you are almost always in your same cluster. The class runs for a full year, allowing students to form longstanding connections with both the students and the professor in the class, with each semester’s course focusing on a different idea under a larger thematic umbrella. For example, last semester my Montserrat was called “Love, Text & Performance” while this semester it’s called “War and the Quest for Identity” under the overarching title of “Love & War.” In my class, we’ve developed our public speaking skills, written and performed monologues (and cheered our classmates on, of course), read numerous plays, poems and novels (currently we are in the midst of tackling Don Quixote), gave presentations, and had countless discussions on all of the above- and more. All Montserrat seminars are different, so there is a lot of variety in terms of content and class structure, aside from a collaborative and supportive first-year environment. On top of attending class every day, Montserrat students are also required to attend 2-4 events within their cluster per semester as a way to form connections with students in their cluster that might not be in their exact seminar. Last semester, for example, we went to the stART on the Street Art Festival in Worcester, among other events, and this semester we were fortunate enough to spend an evening at the stunning Joyce Contemplative Center (located about 20 minutes off-campus) for some Ignatian spirituality, yoga and dinner. I am looking forward to more Montserrat events later this semester, as I’ve really grown to cherish the community formed within my Montserrat and it has been a staple of the first-year experience for sure.

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