Recycling Program Continues to Expand on Campus

As we return from an unexpectedly long Easter break, it is becoming easier than ever to recycle on the Hilltop

When the Class of 2024 Council first took office, they wasted no time beginning on one of their biggest campaign promises-establishing a recycling program on campus. The 2024 Class Council has been consistently attending Campus Cleanups with the Green Team since taking office, and has been working hard to expand greener initiatives on campus. 

During the first full meeting of the Senate this semester, Senator Hannah Peterson and Senator Kevin Macarelli passed a resolution to add a recycling bin outside Joan of Arc Hall, in a more convenient location for many students. They hoped to make recycling more accessible on campus, after the success of the bin in parking lot L. 

This was not the first time JOA had access to accessible recycling bins though, as Resident Assistant Brenna Leach has been running a recycling program in the building for several months. 

A few weeks after the resolution was passed through the Student Senate, signs were added to one of the smaller dumpsters outside of JOA, which is now available to all students.

Senator Kevin Macarelli credits the Green Queens with setting the example for recycling on campus. He and Senator Peterson now serve as co-chairs of the Respect the Nest Committee, which aims to spread awareness of green initiatives on campus.

The Green Queens responded to this new addition, saying, “We are confident that students will properly utilize this resource and we hope to see more green legislation pass through the Student Government Association in the future.”

Senator Peterson hopes to continue this program in the future, but notes that it will not be possible without the cooperation of the student population. In order for things like Davison containers and Starbucks cups to be properly recycled, they must be cleaned out before being put in the recycling bin. This makes the program easier for Physical Plant, and reduces the risk of fines for the school, which would derail the program, and could remove the program from campus entirely.

Admissions Provides Insight into Frequency of Perspective Student Visits

When we returned to campus in August, it was not clear how admissions would be impacted by the pandemic, especially for students hoping to visit the Hilltop during the 2020-2021 school year before applying. With most students on campus, it was important to limit the risk of a COVID-19 outbreak coming from visitors. 

For the beginning of the fall semester, tours and visitors were not allowed on campus, but as the semester progressed, students planning to apply were allowed to visit with increased safety precautions from past years. Students and parents were required to wear masks and stay with admissions staff during their entire time on campus. Tours were also accompanied by a second admissions staff member who cleaned any surfaces touched with sanitizing wipes. 

According to Steve Goetsch, Vice President of Enrollment for the college, students were screened for COVID-19 symptoms upon their arrival, and later in the semester they were required to have a negative test before being allowed on campus.

So far, this has not significantly impacted the number of students who have applied or been accepted for the Fall 2021 semester, nor has it impacted the number of students transferring to Saint Anselm College during the school year, according to admissions staff.

The cancellation of SAT testing in the spring was also expected to impact admissions. Though Saint Anselm College is “test optional”, the nursing program typically requires test scores for admission. The nursing program is also test optional now, and as usual, there was a lot of interest in the program. 

It is too early to tell exactly what impact the pandemic is having on admissions, at Saint Anselm College and across the country, but as application deadlines pass, it will likely become more clear before the next school year begins.

Trump Supporters Lay Siege to Capitol Building In An Effort To Disrupt Electoral Vote Count.

Federal law states that every four years, after the general election, Congress shall meet in a joint session in order to certify the vote count of the Electoral College and officially name the incoming president. In typical years, this comes after the outgoing president has conceded the race, and is used as a photo-op for the president-elect and vice president-elect, as well as their supporters in Congress. This year, on the other hand, it comes after weeks of unproven voter fraud allegations from supporters of President Trump, claiming that the election was “stolen”.

After all voter fraud allegations were thrown out in court due to lack of evidence, over 100 Republican lawmakers announced that they would object to the Electoral College vote count during the joint session of Congress. It was clear that this would not be enough to overturn the election results, so President Trump asked Vice President Pence to overturn the election results himself, something which the Vice President has no authority to do. Pence published a statement this morning explaining that though he agrees with the President’s concerns about the election results, he cannot constitutionally overturn the results himself.

Prior to the beginning of the certification process in Congress, President Trump held a rally in Washington, DC, where he claimed that if Vice President Pence did the “right thing,” he would be given another term. 

The certification process began at 1:00 pm today, and though the vote counts from Alabama and Alaska-both states that voted for President Trump-were accepted with no issue, the first challenge came with the announcement of the vote in Arizona. This prompted a separation of the House of Representatives and Senate to enter debate on the issue. Soon after, protesters outside the Capitol began to break through barriers and storm the steps of the Capitol building. As crowds began to gather on the steps, others forced their way into the building, some breaking windows and climbing through them to enter. 

As rioters made their way through the building-many wearing Trump campaign memorabilia or carrying Confederate flags-lawmakers were sent into lockdown in their offices and instructed to wait until they were able to safely evacuate. Representatives were even given gas masks to protect themselves from tear gas that was deployed inside in an attempt to disperse rioters. One rioter, whose identity has not been released, was shot inside the Capitol and was brought to a local hospital where she has since passed away. Several law enforcement officers were also injured.

Mayor Muriel Bowser of Washington, DC set a curfew for the city of 6:00 pm, before asking for assistance of the National Guard and defense from neighboring states. After the curfew went into effect, law enforcement officers were able to secure the Capitol building, and Congress has resumed debate on the acceptance of Arizona’s 11 electoral votes. Members of Congress expect the certification to be finished tonight.