For band, drill team, unforgettable moments

Marching alongside their musical counterparts, the Norwich University Drill Team was present for the eighth time at this year’s inauguration ceremony. The drill team members were excited to have the country and the rest of the world watch them. “This was my first time going to a presidential inauguration,” said Anthony Rodriguez, 19, a sophomore communications major from San Antonio, Texas, who was excited for this once-in-alifetime opportunity. Before the parade, drill left with band early on Thursday to begin the day long drive to the nation’s capital. Steven Cruz, 21, a junior criminal justice major from Lowell, Mass., was one of the few who were responsible for picking out the five freshmen to go on the trip. “We took all the freshmen into consideration, but we made sure we were picking the ones that stood out the most and were the most dedicated and trained every day,” said Cruz. “Getting to do this event is honorable because not everyone gets to do this and it’s a great way to give back to the university and see new things,” said Cruz. Though they appreciated the experience, some students had hopes for more of a chance to demonstrate their skills on the national stage. “I would have rather like to have seen more of a performance than just marching,” said Christopher Cook, 21, a junior international studies major from Strafford, Pa. Cook wished they had stopped and done a quick performance, since he heard that others in the parade got the chance to do so. Senior Austin Hammonds, 22, felt the same way on the performance side of the drill team, which he often watches practice. “They’re the drill team, the whole thing should be them performing those incredible moves that they’re always practicing and doing at other events,” said Hammonds. “I’ve seen them do some really wild tricks in the past and was surprised they didn’t do them.” Still, Cook and Hammonds were glad that Norwich could participate in this opportunity. “I’m proud of them, and proud of our school,” said Cook.

For band, drill team, unforgettable moments

The Norwich University Regimental band got to be a part of history as it marched in 58th Presidential Inauguration in Washington D.C. “For me personally, being a part of it is very exciting but it is more exciting for the cadets getting to march for the newly elected President of the United States,” said Norwich University Regimental Band Director, Lt. Col. Todd Edwards. This was the band’s eighth performance in the Presidential Inauguration, beginning with ceremonies for John F. Kennedy in 1961. They have since performed for Richard Nixon in 1969, Jimmy Carter in 1977, George H.W. Bush in 1989, George W. Bush in 2005 and Barack Obama in 2013, according to Norwich University’s archives. Jackie Tarasuk, from Bethel, Pa., double majoring in psychology and criminal justice, was one of the cadets put in charge of organizing the trip to D.C. “Personally, for me it was very exciting, I love going on band trips and being able to pull the drill team and band together to perform for the president is really an exciting experience,” she said. Though the band had just three days to prepare after returning from the semester break due to late notification of being accepted to march, training for the event has been long in the works. “Band has really been preparing for this since the beginning of the year, we have had this day marked on our calendars for a while and we just needed to be selected to attend,” said James Wagner, a sophomore construction management major, from Granville Mass.. Acceptance to the event was based on a submitted video of the band marching in a parade which was reviewed and selected by President Trump himself explained Edwards. The band got their call to march around the time of the election. “It was really an amazing experience being able to perform for the President of the United States of America,” said Gio Allen-Masu, a sophomore from Richmond, Va. Allen-Masu pointed out that “political preferences to the side, it is still a once in a lifetime experience, I mean how many people can say they performed for the president?” “It was a very humbling experience just being in Washington D.C. and experiencing the inauguration. It’s one thing to just watch it on TV but its another to actually be there in person and marching for the president,” said Wagner. “Getting to be on national television and getting to see the President of the United States is very exciting, but once again for me it really means a lot to me getting to see the faces of the cadets as they experience this for the first time,” said Lt. Col. Edwards.

A rewarding project on ‘The Great War’ and Norwich alums

A view of the exhibits at the Museum of the Great War in Pay de Beaux, France.

Norwich alumni who served during World War I are the focus of a project that both a military history class and a French class are collaboratively working on. Once finished, the work will be sent overseas sometime during the summer to the Muśee de la Grande Guerre du pays de Meaux (Museum of the Great War, located in Pays de Meaux, about 30 minutes from Paris in central France).

“Our forces over there had hopes and dreams,” said Frances Chevalier, a Professor of French and chair of the department of modern languages. “It’s important for us to learn more about what they experienced.”

Chevalier began this project following a string of visits to France. Professor Chevalier went on these trips to explore the history of France and while there, she found the resting place of her uncle, who had fought and died during the war, possibly in the trenches at the Battle of Verdun.

Chevalier said that her experiences in France, touring the cemeteries of the American deceased and discovering the resting place of her uncle were what would lead her to commit more time into researching World War I. That research would eventually culminate into the service learning project that is now under way. [Read more…]

With heads held high, Norwich band, drill team did school proud

Thomas Jefferson, third president of the United States (1801–1809), and one of the influential framers of the Constitution, was the first U.S. president to be inaugurated at the Capitol in Washington D.C., a city he helped plan. In his first inaugural speech, delivered on March 4, 1801, he said the famous words that are paraphrased in the Norwich University mission statement: “If there be any among us who would wish to dissolve this Union …, let them stand undisturbed as monuments of the safety with which … opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it.”

I bring this up because I received some negative feedback not long ago in response to the news that our Regimental Band and Drill Team would be performing in President Donald Trump’s inaugural parade. Now mind you, the vast majority of the feedback we received was overwhelmingly supportive of our students, but there were some detractors who were upset that our students were participating at all, and others who were unhappy with the statement that our students were “representing Vermont.”

We live in a country where, thankfully, difference of opinion is tolerated. It is our right as American citizens to think as we choose—a right that many have fought and given their lives for. But it is important to remember that opinions are not the same thing as principles. Two sentences prior to the above quote, Jefferson says: “Every difference of opinion is not a difference of principle.” I believe he is alluding to our Constitution, which comprises several principles, among them, the sovereignty of the people, the limitations of government, the separation of power, checks and balances, and so on. It is these democratic principles which guarantee Americans their freedoms and unify us as a people, regardless of our differing opinions.

Whether our students were consciously aware of it or not, these unifying principles were front and center at their performance on Jan. 20, 2017. They marched not just for Norwich University, but also for our democracy, for our founder, Alden Partridge, and for all Norwich alumni since Alonzo Jackman, our first graduate. With heads held high, they marched absent of any political agenda, and with only pride for their regiment, their university, and their country.

As Norwich University’s president, I could not be prouder of our students for continuing this Norwich tradition—one that dates back to the inauguration of President John F. Kennedy in 1961. At least one member of the class of 1963 who marched in that parade recalls being starstruck as he caught sight of the young president—so much so that he stopped beating the bass drum. In true Norwich fashion, the other band members continued on in perfect step, not missing a beat, until the bass drum struck up again two measures later. Such opportunities as this bring honor and prestige to our university, and help to form the Norwich bonds and memories that last a lifetime.

For 10 men’s hockey seniors, camaraderie and high hopes for playoffs

William Pelletier, #20, one of the 10 seniors on the men’s hockey team, celebrates a goal with fellow senior Tyler Piacentini, #21. A close-knit senior class has matured to create a dynamic and powerful offense for the Cadets.

The Norwich University Men’s Ice Hockey Team has clinched three regular season championships over the course of the last four years. This kind of success is largely unheard of in NCAA Division III hockey and showcases the impressive ability Norwich puts on the ice every game.

Much of this success over the last four years has come from this year’s current senior class of ten players who have dedicated thousands of hours to building a successful team over the course of their four-year Norwich career.

“We’ve got nine four-year players that [were honored] on Senior Night, and one three-year transfer player,” said head coach Mike McShane. “We’ve all had our ups and downs, but this has got to be one of my absolute favorite classes.”

McShane added that good team leadership was a natural byproduct of this veteran crew, and a key element to winning any games. [Read more…]

Costly new ‘premier’ parking spots lack appeal for students

Premium parking spots have been designated on campus, including at this location behind South Hall. But the cost seems too much for students. Photo by Evan Bowley

A plethora of parking problems have long been a source of aggravation for students and faculty at Norwich University. Now, the Norwich Security Department is offering a potential way to improve the situation– at least if you are a student willing to pay extra.

Norwich is offering nine special parking spaces at extra cost located behind South Hall and the infirmary.
The announcement of the option first appeared on the Norwich University student website, explaining, “The reserved parking spaces will only be issued by the Security Office, where you will receive a special sticker. They will be issued on first-come , first-serve basis beginning today, Dec. 14, 2016.”

The announcement was signed by Norwich’s Chief of Security, Lawrence Rooney, who explained that the idea came from Norwich student government.

The cost of these premier parking spaces is $337.50 for the spring semester, which is in addition to the annual parking pass. There is no doubt many students would love to leave parking hassles behind, but according to student interviews, the price tag is a deterrent from buying the pass. [Read more…]

Rooks get a trial run of new leadership training program

A four-year cadet training program is currently in the phase of beta testing at Norwich University with the goal of making cadet training more professional and interesting.

On Jan, 24, the Adaptive Leader Training and Education program took place across the NU campus. The program was tested during Tuesday Afternoon Training (TAT).

“We have been doing some critical analysis of the training program for all cadets and in so doing we saw some opportunities presented to us that we could take advantage of and make the cadet training more professional, more focused, more interesting, more challenging, dynamic, exciting and fun,” said Col. Rick Megahan, the Fourth Battalion Assistant Commandant

The development of the program started before Christmas 2016 and the primary focus of the program is to develop leadership skills for first-year Corps members. [Read more…]

It’s time to spice up student life at Norwich University

Assistant Editor Jasmine Bowman

When freshmen in the corps take on rookdom, they usually cannot leave campus unless they are a part of a sports team. That means from August to February, rooks cannot leave campus unless it’s family weekend, thanksgiving break, holiday break or some type of event.

That’s many consecutive days on campus which can probably get nerve-wracking.

However, it can also seem that way for civilians and/or upperclassmen in the corps. This is because many students lack transportation, parking is an ongoing problem, and it can feel like you are trapped here. [Read more…]

Men’s lacrosse ready to make another GNAC title run

After leaving the season with a loss to Lasell College in the GNAC semifinals last season, Norwich University men’s lacrosse team has been preparing for this upcoming season unlike ever before.

“We try to hold ourselves to a little bit higher of a standard each year and this year especially,” said midfielder Jimmy Warden, 22, a senior elementary education major from North Andover, Mass.

Warden is one of this year’s team captains – a role he tries to fill both on the field and in the classroom. “As a captain, I just wanted to take some of the nuances that previous captains have instilled into the program,” Warden said, things like stressing to his fellow teammates that academics do in fact come before lacrosse. He believes this creates a culture for the players to manage their time better and a healthy balance between lacrosse and academics.

While most of the team has carried over from the previous spring, some key players left at the end of the 2016 season. “We lost an all-around great team player, Ryan Dart, who was a fantastic captain,” said Joshua Jenkins, a junior health sciences major, from Denver, Co. “He was just a great fundamental player, and who was a pronounced player defensively and truly knew how to encourage the other teammates.”

Many new players from the freshmen class are expected to step up this year. “I am looking to get on the field and gain the experience needed to be able to play college lacrosse,” said Russell Gilligan, a freshman computer security and information assurance major from Fountainhills, Ariz. “Being a part of a team that has a chance at winning the title is a great deal of pressure but I hope I will succeed.” [Read more…]

At the studios of Dog River Radio, WNUB-FM, the programs are colorful and eclectic

WNUB at Norwich University is also known as Dog River Radio.

Left, Christian Torchon ‘19 (aka DJ Dangue) on air with special radio guest Caitlin Judith Heale, ‘20, and right, Michelle Masperi ‘19 (aka DJ Debile) on a show called Euromix. WNUB is both an outlet for creativity and a hands-on learning experience for students wanting to learn the art of putting on a radio show. Overseen by Prof. Doug Smith, with modern equipment and now streaming live, online listeners tune in from all over for an eclectic range of shows.             Evan Bowley photo

Dog River Radio has been a voice in the Norwich community for decades. Behind the FM signals going out over campus, a lot of things are going on behind the scene.

“Listeners of WNUB only hear what goes into producing our own live shows,” said Colin Tarpey, 23, a political science major from Cohasset, Mass. “Unlike big time stations, we are fully responsible for managing every aspect of our shows, which can be a challenge.”

Norwich students have long been responsible for managing and operating the radio station. Students are expected to voice track, record promos, and record commercials, complete class projects, and fulfill their weekly live show time slot. It’s a lot of responsibility and work but it also provides a lot of opportunity to be creative.

“The students may create, produce, and execute their own weekly two-hour shows however they wish so long as they stay within FCC and station rules,” said Doug Smith, an adjunct professor from Grantham, N.H. in the Communications Department who is WNUB-FM faculty manager. “I inform them of the FCC regulations that we must live under plus my own rules and guidelines.” [Read more…]