University schedules holiday events
For the second year, Seton Hall is continuing its tradition of Christmas at the Hall. Christmas at the Hall is a series of events that take place during the month of Dec., commencing the holiday season at Seton Hall.
Msgr. Thomas Nydegger, associate vice president for Student Affairs, described Christmas at the Hall as “Seton Hall University’s official observation of the Advent and Christmas Season. It runs from the Mass, Crèche Blessing and Tree Lighting Ceremony until the University community departs for the Christmas break.”
Christmas at the Hall has events and activities for all, and kicks off with the 2nd annual tree lighting ceremony on Dec. 1. According to Laure A. Pine, director of Media Relations for SHU, the tree is a 55 ft. Norway Spruce, with approximately 43,000 lights.
Christmas at the Hall features many events. According to the events calendar, these events include Ice Skating on the Green on Dec. 2, the Winter Ball on Dec. 8 and the SAB Radio City Christmas Spectacular Trip, also on Dec. 8.
Many events focus on charity and giving during the holiday seasons, including “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” hosted by Chi Upsilon Sigma includes writing letters to soldiers, orphans and the elderly on Dec. 7, the DOVE Toy Wrapping Party on Dec. 9th and the “Give the Gift of Blood” Blood Drive on Dec. 10.
Ongoing events include the 12 Days of Christmas with Holiday Treats in the Galleon Dining room, and the DOVE Toy Drive Giving Tree. All students, faculty members, student organizations, campus offices, and administrators are invited to participate in the DOVE Toy Drive Giving Tree.
Michelle Peterson, director of DOVE, said “The Division of Volunteer Efforts is holding its Annual Toy Drive from Nov. 20 until Dec 8. All toys collected will benefit children ages newborn to 16 of the Genoa Christian Center in West Virginia, as well as needy families at St. John’s Soup Kitchen in Newark and families in our South Orange Community.”
Nydegger, described the importance of Christmas at the Hall for students, stating “We, as an institution, focus on the development and formation of the whole person: Seton Hall is a home for the mind, the heart and the spirit.”
According to Nydegger, all the events associated with and part of ‘Christmas at the Hall’ seek to contribute to this endeavor to offer to students the opportunities of putting their learning into action both in service and celebration and so become the servant leaders in a global society that we seek to engender in our world.
Students at Seton Hall also feel that Christmas at the Hall is an important tradition that should be continued for years to come.
Nicollette Romeo, a senior business management major at Seton Hall, said “I think it’s important for Seton Hall to put on these events because its brings the Seton Hall community together in a positive light.”
She added “The events held on campus make it easier for residents to attend and get together with the commuters who are already on campus and have friends who reside at Seton Hall.”
Sarah Chabak, a junior elementary and special education major said “I think that it is important for Seton Hall to put on these events because it provides a chance for students to get into the holiday spirit. By having these holiday events, students are able to relax and get ready to go home to their families and celebrate not just Christmas, but also Hanukkah and Kwanzaa.”
Nydegger believes that Christmas at the Hall is successful because “Christmas taps into a part of all of us that hopes! While it brings back nostalgic remembrances of the past, it offers hope that we can realize change in our own lives and, though that change, change our community and world for the better.”
Jessica Formichella can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.