NECC Observer

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


Photo collage, buildings and portrait of grandmother

Photo Essay: Before I'm gone

My grandmother’s neighborhood in the Bronx, near Gun Hill Rd. Bottom left image is on Brooklyn bridge (she’d drive through there everyday). Carmen “Tita” Almonte   “I always served other people. Running around, always doing things for other people. There isn’t anybody out there that has any negative feelings towards me, thank Jehovah. The best thing in life is when people get along. When people get along, we live well. We live happily. I believe…

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Inspiration vs imitation: Learning when to detach oneself: Why taking a step back is just as crucial as moving forward.

Inspiration is key. It’s something that I need around me constantly, and it’s what drives me to create.  But I have to know when to detach. Not that long ago I wrote a piece about what some local artists are doing to find inspiration during these trying times, as it sure hasn’t been easy to pick up that paintbrush (or camera, in my case) and do what we love. Most of the people that I interviewed had the same problem that I did when it comes to inspiration, and it’s something that I am now starting to realize is a bad thing.  All of our inspiration comes externally. Because our inspiration comes externally, we all find the need to have it around us constantly. Whether that be magazines, photobooks, or saved photos on Instagram, we all heavily rely on having it readily available to us when needed. The problem with getting so attached to external inspiration is that we get fixated on these certain things. We form habits of looking at other artist’s work and using that as our main drive to create. “If they can do that, why can’t I?” Habits can be productive. Habits can give us meaning,…

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Pandemic pregnancy: The pressures of parenthood

Because there is still so much that we do not know about COVID-19, we are unsure of some of the effects that it can have on a developing child. What we do know is that COVID-19 is uncommon in newborns born to mothers who had tested positive for COVID-19 during pregnancy, and while some newborns have tested positive for COVID-19 shortly after birth, it is unknown if they got the virus before, during, or after birth. Pregnant women often bear the brunt of limited health resources, and past epidemics have shown that it makes pregnant women and babies that much more vulnerable. It is harder for women to access health-care facilities due to increased physical and financial barriers, as well as fear of contracting infection. Women who were unable to access family planning, were more likely to give birth at home — which is riskier for both mother and child. One mother, Emerald Medina, who gave birth to her first child in August of 2020 shared her experience: “Having my daughter Phoenix during the midst of a pandemic was very bittersweet to say the least,” she said. “I was not able to do much while pregnant because that was when…

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News Bytes

Center for Liberal Arts offfers advising resources

As the spring semester comes to an end advising season begins, which gives students only a short time to complete their assignments and seek advising assistance so that they can enroll into the classes that are needed for their majors. Fortunately, the Center for Liberal Arts at Northern Essex Community…

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Free Farmers Market fills a need

The free Farmers Market at Northern Essex Community is open to all  students, staff, and faculty at both the Lawrence and Haverhill campuses. The market provides  up to 25 pounds of fresh produce to anyone a part of the Northern Essex community. It is located  at the Spurk “C” Building…

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NECC golf team prepares for nationals

Due to COVID restrictions this past year, the golf program has not been able to get their season going. There were a lot of question marks in early March and they weren’t even sure if playing matches this year was going to be possible. The NECC Golf roster is small…

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Learning with Zoom

Since the start of pandemic, we have all been trying to gather ourselves and figure out what our new “normal” is. As far as educational purposes go, schools and universities had to think of a way for their students to continue their education virtually. This is when the software Zoom…

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Opinion: The complexity of higher education

I’ve seen the idea recently floating around that colleges should be free. On the surface that seem like a great idea, but if you look deeper, does everyone deserve to go to college? I will not lie college is expensive with everything from textbooks that cost hundreds of dollars to…

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A reflection on the GTAV roleplaying community throughout the pandemic

The Grand Theft Auto: V roleplay community, shorthand GTA RPC, felt loss, heartbreak and sorrow in 2020, with the loss of some of its most prevalent, founding members.such as Kenny “Blue622” Tencredi, who took his own life in July of last year, following the death of Byron “Reckful” Bernstein. One of…

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Featured Articles

Students share thoughts on vaccines

The last year has shifted this whole world upsidedown, and at this rate the cause of all of this is common knowledge. 2020 was a burden and a year to forget by many, but this year has brought out the joy in that COVID vaccinations are increasing at a rapid rateby each following month. As things currently stand, 30% of the entire U.S. populationhave been fully vaccinated, also meaning nearly 100 million Americans with 237 million doses of the COVID vaccine already being handed out nationwide As we see the increase of vaccinations, many peoplehave different views on what the vaccines will mean in terms of dealing with the pandemic. Students at NECC have all had unique beliefs and experiences with vaccines so far, with…

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Students reflect on end of semester

As the semester comes to a close and many students are preparing for their final exams or projects, many are feeling overwhelmed with everything they are having to manage, but at the same time, students are also feeling excited because a break is in their near future. NECC student, Isa Grullon, is currently feeling very overwhelmed having to juggle obligations at college including her final projects between the two courses she is taking, alongside her personal obligations including her job working for Mass General Hospital in Boston. “It’s a very hectic time,” explained Grullon. Grullon, who started out the semester taking three courses, became very overwhelmed very quickly because of the added pressures of keeping up with extra college work. As a result of this,…

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Virtual events help students stay connected

Northern Essex Community College has held numerous virtual events ever since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak last March. Planned events like this allow the NECC community to feel togetherness, even when classes are remote. Virtual events have been orchestrated for a little over a year now by the Coordinator of Student Activities, Stephanie Haskell. It is extremely important for her, and the entire community of NECC, to allow students to have events that keep them in the loop with each other. Along with many other themed virtual events, the college will be hosting a Trivia Night on May 3. Although the theme for this night is currently a secret, it is sure to be a fun event that everyone will enjoy. All members of…

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