The original reasoning behind Thanksgiving was to express gratitude for the plentiful harvest and other blessings the pilgrims had encountered that year. And although we don’t necessarily share thanks for similar reasons that the colonists did, I am a strong believer that this holiday is such a wonderful reminder to spread appreciation. More specifically, to those who don’t often receive it.
There are many moving parts that work towards keeping our community a well-oiled machine. They are unfortunately often forgotten, however. In honor of this Thanksgiving, I wanted to make sure that all of the unsung heroes of Fairfield University are given a spotlight because they just don’t get enough credit.
To the people who keep us fed, thank you. You never fail to provide us with numerous options so that we all can find something we like; which includes various menus for those of us with dietary restrictions. You encourage us to venture into different cuisines that expand our palettes, and thankfully, you create balanced meals so that we don’t fall into the “freshman-15” stereotype. We appreciate how early you wake up to start prepping our breakfast and how late you stay to match our weird eating patterns.
To the people who keep our home stunning, thank you. I know we mostly complain about the sound of the lawnmowers waking us up, but we’re the ones in bed while you work. You continuously clean up outdoor litter, trim and maintain our greenery, rake the fallen leaves, salt the icy sidewalks, lay down new beds of mulch and so much more. We are so spoiled by the constant beauty of our school, that your work goes under-appreciated when it shouldn’t be. You are the reason many of us picked Fairfield in the first place: our gorgeous campus.
To the people who keep us clean and safe, thank you. When living in communal dormitories, germs are quickly spread and things break somewhat commonly. Because of you, we have spotless living spaces like our bathrooms, laundry rooms, lounges and hallways. Without our university plumbers and electricians, I wouldn’t have a working stove or hot water. Thank you for quickly coming to our aid in any way needed.
Dunkin’ Staff Members
To the people who make our coffees daily, thank you. Fairfield certainly does run on Dunkin, and it is obvious from the mile-long line any morning of the week. Thank you for not being intimidated by our masses. You always work at an efficient pace and every employee never fails to offer a genuine, kind conversation at the register. Our days start with you, and we wouldn’t want it any other way.
To the people who transport us to and from campus, thank you. I can’t imagine driving in a constant loop all day, yet you do it without any complaints and a bright smile every single time. You maneuver a huge vehicle with a herd of Stags with ease, which always surprises me, especially when we make the turn into the small bridge by the train station. Now that is talent.
Counseling & Psychological Services
To the people who put us back together, thank you. College can be such an intense period of our lives; not just because it’s “the best four years,” but because it’s without a doubt, the most transitional. You provide us with endless support when it comes to our failed relationships, roommate troubles, academic failures and inevitable comparison. You drop everything to help us, and we can only hope that there is someone that does the same for you.
To the people who keep us healthy, thank you. You are the true rockstars of this campus. When we are all hacking in our sleep and sniffling through our classes, you are the ones who cure us. I can’t even begin to count the number of times when I felt ill and was given an appointment for the next or even the same day. You have worked through the toughest conditions these past few years for us, as you watched most of us fall victim to COVID, something I’m sure many of you did as well. You put us over yourselves every single day, and it’s undeniably heroic.
To the people who are the biggest contributors to our academia, thank you. It is so obvious that you all love your job and your passion is contagious. You not only act as a guiding hand but do so with empathy and compassion. You are our biggest influence and we look up to you. Shout out, even more so, to those professors who offer us extensions, retakes, extra credit opportunities and real-world advice. I genuinely don’t know what we would do without you.
The Fairfield community is so large that our biggest contributors get lost in the shadows. Just know that you do not go unnoticed. We are so grateful to you and appreciate the endless hours you put towards feeding, transporting, fixing, healing and teaching us. I’m sorry if we don’t say it enough, but please listen when I speak for all of us. Thank you.