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Editors say final goodbyes

Kait Bedell

It’s senior year of high school and 17-year-old Kait is crying at her computer at the dining room table of her house while looking at college applications. She is heartbroken that she might not be able to go to the school that she thought was the perfect fit for her because it is a little too-far out of budget. She is confused, lost, and feels that she is far behind all of her peers who have already made their decisions about where they will be attending college.  

In a hopeless effort for an answer, she stumbles across an application for Lasell University. A small school outside of Boston, she figures, what’s the harm in applying to this random school?  

If I could have a conversation with that kid who feels like her world is crumbling around her, I would tell her that she ends up exactly where she needs to be.  

I would tell her that she would go on to make connections she never thought possible. That she would truly find herself in unimaginable ways in those next four years. I would tell her that she would find a place that feels like home.  

Lasell is the kind of community that really encourages people to become the best versions of themselves. It is the kind of place where it doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from. Everybody here has a purpose. Everybody here is a part of something bigger than themselves.  

From being on two sports teams to working for the school newspaper, that scared little kid has grown into a confident, driven, outgoing figure in the community. All thanks to the people she has been surrounded by.  

Whether it was late nights spent in the 1851 Chronicle office, a collaborative classroom environment, or a tough overtime playoff game, I have learned what it truly means to push yourself to be the best you can be. It tested my limits. It stressed me out. It was heartbreaking when things didn’t go perfectly, but it taught me to overcome adversity. It taught me how wonderful it is to be a part of a community that always has your back through the good and the bad times.  

Deciding to come to Lasell was the best decision I ever made and has given me the opportunity to really become the person I am today. It gave me a purpose. It gave me something to be prideful about. I could not be more grateful for the people who have been in my life these last four years and all of the lessons I have learned along the way. This place will always have a special place in my heart. No matter where I go next, Lasell will always feel like home to me.

LJ VP LaFiura

I see this as an opportunity to discuss something that has brought me much joy and growth in these past four years, pouring yourself into your community. 

After I found this university, the journey started primarily within the 1851 Chronicle, where more experienced people like Professor Emerita Marie Franklin and upperclassmen let me into spaces I might not have been prepared for. These opportunities made me work harder and I’m a better creator and leader for them. Now, I’ve had the opportunity to guide and write about topics both serious and fun that impact countless people on campus. Then you have the other side of my coin, WLAS. After being brought in and lifted up by those there before, I was handed leadership of the organization after my own heart. I adore the radio’s opportunity to connect with the community and foster a campus-wide relationship, and it's been a thrill guiding that forward. I’m also thankful for not just Dr. Brian Wardyga’s guidance, but his support and possibly excessive trust he’s put in me.

Pouring yourself into your community is difficult in action but simple to define, it’s giving every bit you can to better your community and elevate others. It’s sacrificing your time and occasionally sanity for an initiative bettering those unknown. It’s choosing a path because of your interest, rather what will give future Lasers greater standing in years to come. It’s about teaching underclassmen how to lead with hunger and humility and guiding others to standards they are yet to know. For me, pouring myself into the community is long days in the Greg Lab or Chronicle office. The work that mattered was taking risks and pushing boundaries that allowed WLAS to connect with the campus on a new level this year. Why I’m comfortable leaving this behind is my work with the next generation like Elliot Pototsky, an incredible communicator whose motor and mentality can far exceed what I could dream for this community.

This is what it means to be a part of the community at a university you will be perpetually tied to. It may appear to be a lot of work, trust me it is, but you won’t walk away believing it wasn’t worth it. I am thrilled to be a Michael B. Alexander Student Leader of the Year, a level of respect that also needs to be put on my peers who got me there, but I by no means needed it for these four years to be a success. That comes from seeing the process work and above all, seeing these people I care about thrilled to continue high-level, passionate work in a community we all care about.

This is why I loved my time, and why I’ll never truly leave this little cohort nestled on Woodland Road. In your time remaining, please take this to heart as this place and people are more special than you realize and you could never regret it.

Payton Hebert

So often we are told to follow our dreams. To chase the thing beyond our wildest imagination. We are told to dream big. To create expectations for ourselves that seem unfathomable. I think I recognized from a young age that dreams were a big ask. I have never found anything worthwhile in pining over dream after dream. I think that is something Lasell and I have in common. 

At Lasell, people do not dream. They just do. 

In my time at the Chronicle, I have written about authors, musicians, fashion designers, and passionate people rallying to get the community together for causes they care about. The stories are about many different people, but relay the same spark, the same drive, that you all have. You guys do not wait for your dreams to reach you. You are making them happen now, and it has been a privilege to tell your stories. 

When I look at my own experience here, I notice that freshman year seems like it was just yesterday, yet the person that I was feels so far away. Reflecting on that girl, I realize she was stuck in seeing everything, and everyone, as black and white, and because of that she was stuck on her own potential. 

Telling your stories has changed me. 

You make something out of nothing. You care to extents that pour life into this campus, that force people to recognize the things that matter. You are shameless and fearless, and because of that, this school feels connected. It has been so special to witness the love you all create.

It was not deep into my time on the paper that I recognized the fire you all had, and that fire forced me to be the person that I am now. Being anything other than my best was an injustice to the passion and care you guys were bleeding into this community. Thank you for being the people who changed me. 

As I prepare to graduate, I lean towards the bitter side of bittersweet. My life will never be like this again. I will never see a familiar face on every walk that I take. I will never come back to my dorm and see athletes practicing on Grellier field, or sit down for class and hear someone strumming away at a guitar in a neighboring room. 

Our life here is simple, but it is filled with the passion of our community. I am going to miss it, so, so much. 

I am so proud that you are the people I am going to carry with me as I walk across that stage and into my future. I am satisfied that my largest impact here was telling your stories. You deserve to live on. 

Thank you.

Payton Hebert, Pat Carbone, and Harley LaCardo work on their final issue of the 1851 Chronicle. Photo by: Michael Curran

Harley LaCardo

When I look back at my time at Lasell, I can’t help but feel a rush of nostalgia wash over me. It’s hard to believe that four years have already passed since I first stepped foot onto this campus as an innocent, wide-eyed freshman excited for the journey ahead. Now, as I prepare to say goodbye to my college years and embark on the next chapter of my life, I find myself reflecting more than usual.

Change is the only constant, and as we navigate into our next chapters of life, I am reminded of the impact each encounter has had on my life. From the highs to the lows, every twist and turn has contributed to the person I am today. 

College was a time of transformation, challenges, and unforgettable memories. Looking back on my own journey, I am shocked by how much has changed. Friendships have changed, lessons have been learned, and growth has occurred. But amidst all the experiences, one constant has remained: my love for writing. 

In my sophomore year, I met Professor Marie Franklin, who introduced me to the 1851 Chronicle. Working at the 1851 Chronicle has been more than just a job, it has been an experience that has helped shape my career path in ways I could have never imagined. 

Coming into Freshman year, I had yet to decide what I wanted to do or what I could do to help get me to where I wanted to be. With the guidance of Professor Franklin, I was brought to a place that would provide me with lessons learned in the newsroom that I will carry with me long after graduation. 

Through late nights spent writing and editing articles and countless interviews with fellow students and faculty members, I have honed my writing and communication skills. As I prepare to leave behind these familiar halls and step out into the unknown, I am filled with a mixture of excitement and grief. But I take comfort in knowing that the lessons learned and memories made during my time here will stick with me as I travel through life. 

Pat Carbone

This is a very odd feeling. It’s a point in my life that has been in the back of my mind for as long as I can remember, but now that it’s here, it doesn’t feel real. I feel so many mixed emotions, whether excitement, sadness, regret, or relief, that I can’t figure out whether I’m ready to start the next chapter or not.

Whether I like it or not, the next chapter is about to begin, and for the first time in my life, I don’t have any hints of what’s to come. But I think that’s where the excitement comes into play. Many people are terrified of the unknown, yet for some reason, I find a thrill in it. 

Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of things I’m scared about, like paying bills and whatnot. But the fact that I don’t know what city I may find myself in or what new hobbies may come my way gets me excited to venture out of Auburndale.

Although I find myself looking at where I could be going, over the past few weeks, it’s been hard for me to look at where I’ve come from. I’ve found myself being more thankful for the helping hands I’ve had along the way. Family, friends, teachers, coaches, and mentors have all run across my head as I stare at the graduation date circled on my calendar. 

I’m so blessed to be where I am in my life right now, I don’t even have words to describe how appreciative I am for the people in my life. Many of those people can be found right here at the 1851 Chronicle. When times were tough, these long days at layout seemed stressful but served as a place where I could unwind and laugh.

Marie Franklin, Kaie Quigley, Mike Maruk, Becca Osowski, LJ LaFiura, Payton Hebert, and Kait Bedell have all given me one of the greatest gifts a Lasell student could have: being part of the 1851 Chronicle.


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