By Ashley Clark, Contributing Writer
Jade Petrie reaching to pick some apples (Photo courtesy of Jared Smelter)
Wondering what fall activities there are to do around campus? Look no further, because students of the University of Maine at Farmington have some fun activities to get involved in!
With the University taking serious precautions to stop the spread of COVID-19, many activities and events the school used to hold seem to have been cancelled. These activities include the Halloween dance, trick or treating in the dorms, and the haunted hall walk; however, students around campus have still been getting in the Fall spirit and looking for other fun Fall activities to get involved in.
UMF Junior and Art History Major, Jack Olson, participated in an all time favorite and classic fall pastime, “My friends and I decided to still go apple-picking this year,” he said, “Since the orchard is outdoors, we were able to still feel safe and have fun.” Olson and his friends ventured to Boothby’s Orchard and Farm to getin the fall spirit.
UMF Junior and Elementary Education Major, Jade Petrie, also attended the apple-picking trip and had a ginormous bag of apples to bring home, “Since we picked so many apples, we decided to make an apple pie,” she said, “However, we picked so many apples that we had enough to make several pies.”
For students of drinking age, a new restaurant/bar opened during summer break while most campus residents were gone. Because of this, many still do not know of it or where it is. The Farmhouse Beer Garden is located at 926 Farmington Falls Rd, Rte 2, Farmington, ME. Their hours of operation are Tuesday-Sunday 12pm-8pm and Monday 4pm-8pm.
UMF senior and Elementary Education Major, Leanna Farr, has visited the Beer Garden several times, “The outdoorsy atmosphere with various beers on tap keeps me coming back,” she said, “There are also lawn games you can play with your friends, such as cornhole—and the pizza is delicious.” With plenty of beers on tap, it is the perfect place to order a flight of beer, relax, and hangout with friends in this nice fall weather. If you are under the age of 21, you can still visit The Farmhouse Beer Garden as they have alternative drinks to offer such as sodas and milkshakes.
A popular fall activity students participate in is decorating their dorm room or apartments for the upcoming holiday. Halloween is nearing and many people love to decorate for it.
UMF sophomore and Elementary Education Major, Marissa Goodwin, has already started decorating her apartment. Fall is her favorite season, “I decorate for the fall season first and then decorate for Halloween as it gets closer,” she said, “I have decorative pillows matching fall colors on my couch. As well as, pumpkins, leaves, and turkey decor scattered around the apartment.”
With the weather getting cooler and the leaves starting to fall, the campus has been humming with fall spirit. Hopefully these fall festive activity suggestions will help those wanting a way to share this spirit.
Leanna Farr Contributing Writer
For the second year in a row, the UMF women’s soccer team has made it to the North Atlantic Conference (NAC) championship game. The beavers won the NAC championship last year for the second time in program history. The championship win last season was unexpected after the beavers had a rough start to the season.
McKenna Brodeur, junior psychology major, and leading goal scorer on the team with 52 career goals, said in an email interview “Winning the NAC was surreal. I think since it was so unexpected, it felt like a dream. There was so much energy in the air that day.” Brodeur comes from Oakland, Maine and is one of the key players in the offense.
On Nov. 10, the team made it to the championship game once again. “As a team, making it to the NAC championship again showed how much we have progressed. We were successful in areas that we have not been in the past,” Brodeur said “I knew how good we could be and how far we could make it. There is always pressure when you win one year and come back the next year. People do expect certain things to work out.”
The sophomore returning player Adriana Novella, a community health major, said, “Just making it to the NAC final proved what type of team we are and how hard we fight for each other and what we want.” Novella plays center back and is a crucial part of the beavers’ defense.
Women’s Soccer During Gameplay (Photo courtesy of Molly Wilkie)
During the regular season players always have another game to do better, but post-season playoffs become so much more important. Brodeur said, “It’s win or go home. The energy is different.”
In the audience, the energy and atmosphere at the game was a level up with all the UMF students and parents yelling and cheering with airhorns every time they made a good play. The Maine Maritime Academy (MMA) men’s team, who were playing next, yelled and cheered for their women’s team before leaving at half time to prepare for their game.
When it comes to being a UMF beaver, “I have never been part of such a close-knit team before. Everyone has your back and wants what is best for you. We are best friends on and off the field,” Brodeur said. “Our goal was to make it back to the championship game, and although we hoped to win, just being there felt like a huge accomplishment.”
“This season we all truly embraced our vision of family over everything. We overcame a lot of things that we did not think we could at the beginning of the season,” Novella said. “Just making it to the NAC final proved what type of team we are and how we fight for each other and what we want.”
Leanna Farr Contributing Writer
When it comes to finances, the UMF Financial Literacy Peer Educators (FinLit), is the place to go. The program was created last year after Janet Mills, former state attorney general and the current governor of the state of Maine, donated $901,000 to a grant to fund the program which was set to be implemented at all seven public universities in Maine by 2021.
FinLit provides various financial services, such as one-on-one appointments and exit loan counseling on top of organizing presentations and events. The peer educators are experts on FAFSA, credits, loans, budgeting, investing, taxes, and saving.
With coordination from Sarah Hinman, the Financial Literacy Peer Education Coordinator, UMF was the first campus to implement the financial literacy program. Hinman has implemented the same program at the University of Maine at Augusta and University of Maine at Orono this year.
Caleb Grover, a senior business economics major, has been a peer educator since the program began last year. “Our most popular service is filing the FAFSA with students,” said Grover. “One of the program’s missions is to increase the number of students filing their FAFSA in the state of Maine.” Only around 40% of students are filing their FAFSA to receive financial aid, grants and work-study.
Sarah Hinman, Jacob Leonard, and Caleb Grover, Members of the #FinLit Squad (Photo courtesy of Leanna Farr)
To try and help students with filing their FAFSA, FinLit held an event where peer educators helped students file their FAFSA for free while eating cake. They also advertised a drawing for a $25 gift card. “It went really well, even better than last year which went really well for the first year having it,” Grover said. “This year there was even higher attendance. There was at least one student there at all times.”
“The key to our success is definitely partnering with other offices to promote and have support for bigger campus-wide events,” Hinman said. They achieve this by giving presentations for admissions with visiting high school students and working with the career services and Merrill Hall.
When discussing the work as a peer educator Grover said “it’s a professional but relaxed environment where we help students face challenges so they don’t make the same mistakes we did.” Working with other students has made him realize “there are a lot of situations you don’t realize are going on until you hear someone’s situation,” he said, “it is grounding working with people that have it a lot worse than you and you offering them help.
Jake Leonard, a junior in the computer science major, also works as a financial peer educator. “There is a lot going on with other student’s finances that you wouldn’t expect. Some people come it not knowing that they owe $30,000 and others are really stressed but only owe a minimal amount,” he said. “There’s a visible weight lifted when people come in and sit with us and understand.”
For more information about upcoming events, learn more about the peer educators, and get financial tips, check out their Instagram @umf_finlit. The peer educators can also found in room 201 at Franklin Hall.