NECC Observer

The student news website of Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

Courageous Conversations: Giving thanks

Courageous Conversations are one of NECC’s student life traditions and remains true to its name. These conversations are designed to bring students together, so they have a chance to engage in truthful, and sometimes difficult dialogues.

They are held semi-often and are led by NECC Coordinator of Student Activities, Stephanie Haskell.

On Monday, Nov. 23, just three days prior to Thanksgiving, a small group of students joined a zoom call to discuss their plans for the autumnal holiday that traditionally consists of the gathering of family members in an age when gatherings are prohibited.

This particular conversation was more of a friendly chat than some of the deeper, more involved ones that have taken place in the past.

Still, it was a great opportunity for connecting with fellow students, considering the fact that the majority of our school life consists of looking at a screen rather than engaging with classmates in real life.

Kicking off the conversation, Haskell took a chance to emphasize the importance of taking a moment for one’s self.

“We get so stressed out in these times, it’s so important to pause and remind ourselves of the bigger picture,” she said;  advice that I think everyone should take to heart in this day and age.

NECC student, Zoey Lauria, shared a bit of what her typical Thanksgiving looks like and how this year it would most definitely feel different.

“It feels nostalgic honestly, but it might be a little weird now,” she said.

I would think most people would agree with Lauria’s views on this holiday and our current circumstances.

This year is without a doubt vastly different from anything we as a community have experienced before and now with the holiday season upon us and the possibility of being unable to hug and kiss our loved ones, it can add a new sense of loss and sadness on top of everything else we’ve had to put to rest since March.

However, it’s moments like these, the joining of voices, that will keep us thriving until the day we can all go back to normal.

“I’m hopeful” Lauria says, leaving the conversation off on a refreshing note.