Students work to change community members attitudue

Many on Castleton College’s campus know Emma Faucher as a community advisor and for studying abroad in New Zealand, but she’s becoming known in the town of Castleton too.

The beginning of the 2014-2015 school year didn’t get off the best start. Students at the college were getting too rowdy on the weekends causing members of the community to become annoyed.

 Faucher decided to put her foot down and show the community that not all students at Castleton cause trouble.  

“It’s important that everyone is happy, and I feel this is the way to make that happen,” Faucher said of her efforts to bring residents and students together.  “In reality, the college does a lot for the community, but the community also does a lot for the college, and I don’t think some of the students really realize that.”

On Dec. 14, 2014, Faucher and other volunteers held a prime rib dinner at the Castleton Community Center. One of the attendees, Robert Wuagneux, professor at Castleton State College and community member, was asked to get involved.

“The morale was fantastic, and everyone was happy!” Wuagneux said. “The follow-up from people who attended was like, students were out of this world, they definitely represented the community, and all positive things,” Wuagneux said.

Castleton Police Chief Peter Mantello helped coordinate the behind the scenes for the event. When asked if the community’s attitude positively changed toward the college, he said he thinks it did.

“Many board members attended and loved it. I’ve heard nothing but good things; nothing negative, all positive,” he said. “I would like to see two events happen; one early winter and one in the spring time before finals.”

David Ievoli, vice president of Campus Activities, offered one of the many sets of hands to make this event run smoothly.

“The dinner was great. We enjoyed it. It was really nice to sit down with the community members and talk to them. It was cooler to see them stay. They would eat their dinners and talk to people. This was the relationship we wanted to form between us and the community,” he said.

Faucher won a $15,000 scholarship in October to study abroad in New Zealand, so for the spring semester, she won’t be able to be a part of the upcoming community engagements.

“I’m definitely going to miss planning the events while being abroad,” she said. “I can’t say I’ll miss the stress of them, but I will definitely miss the outcome of putting together a successful event and pleasing the community, but I’ll be back next fall for more!”

Faucher said she simply hopes she made an impact on Castleton residents.

 “Bottom line, if people remember me as someone who cared about community engagement once I graduate, I’d be okay with that because I feel so strongly about it.”

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