Guest post by Joanmarie Del Vecchio ’15
I’ve always been a fan of history, and perhaps coming from Philadelphia and doing debate in high school meant that the Constitution was always special to me. This document written 225 years ago is still essentially governing the most powerful country in the world, and I find that pretty incredible! I wanted to use Walker Wall as a space to remind students what the Constitution means to them – love it or hate it.
Sometimes I think that the “Claremont Bubble” extends beyond just current events and into the realm of national government. I mean, are students going to be sending out mass emails imploring students to vote for a presidential or Congressional candidate? Do students still take advantage of all of their Constitutional rights while on campus?
For me, Walker Wall could be so much more than a built-in billboard for clubs and athletic events and imprints of students hands and, er, backsides. It could easily become a place for students to voice their opinions of topics of national interest. (It was also sort of an exercise for myself in that I hadn’t used the wall for anything but sponsor-group murals – it was on my bucket list!)
I wanted to remind students that they are living and learning not just in Claremont, not just in California, but America – and sort of start an internal dialogue for what that means to them. Do they want to lobby for change in their government? Are they bringing an international perspective to the community and, on a grander scale, the country? “We the people” has changed over the years, and I included the message that we are “225 years in the making” to remind students that they are a part of that change.