Quinnipiac unleashes new ambitions for spring semester

Eric Kerr, Men's Basketball Beat Reporter

With the words “Ambition Unleashed,” painted across Quinnipiac University, President Judy Olian has ambitions to provide rapid COVID-19 tests to students through the swipe of a Q-Card.

“You are going to be able to have access to your own rapid tests,” Olian said. “Whenever you need it… VP Bethany Zemba is organizing vending machines with rapid tests that you can get your own rapid test free.”

No details were revealed as to when or where the vending machines will be on campus. Olian did add that students will be allowed up to three free rapid tests per semester.

Olian revealed the news at Quinnipiac’s Welcome Back Event inside the Mount Carmel Auditorium this afternoon. Students had the option to attend in person or on Zoom to hear from Olian, Quinnipiac Athletic Director Greg Amodio, Quinnipiac Men’s Ice Hockey coach Rand Pecknold, Quinnipiac Women’s Ice Hockey coach Cassandra Turner, Quinnipiac’s Vice President for Marketing and Communications Daryl Richard, Quinnipiac Chief Experience Officer Tom Ellet and Quinnipiac Student Government Association (SGA) Vice President Chris Longchamp about all the plans the University had to offer this semester.

Olian kicked off the event with the new COVID-19 test information as a way to urge students to stay safe against Omicron variant-related cases across Connecticut. Right now, the total runs at 693,386 cases where 1,270 people are hospitalized.

“In this phase of COVID, it’s really relying on your good judgment, your personal accountability, your transparency,” Olian said. “We are going to do our part to give you a full semester experience, but [what] we ask of you is that you manage your own health with responsibility and accountability.,”

Following Olian, Amodio introduced the men’s and women’s ice hockey coaches. Both coaches shared their appreciation of their teams both standing inside the top 10 in the NCAA Hockey USHO polls. The men’s ice hockey sits at no. 2, while women’s is currently at no. 7.

The two also urged students to attend each of their team’s upcoming home games against Yale University, Quinnipiac’s rival in ice hockey. Women’s ice hockey is set to take on the Bulldogs on Friday, Feb. 18. The men’s team was supposed to play Yale on Jan. 8, but their game was rescheduled to Feb. 22 due to positive COVID-19 cases within the Bulldogs roster.

Amodio confirmed that students who claimed their student tickets for the Jan. 8 game would still have their tickets, meaning they will not redo a live student seating order. Amodio added that there are still a limited number of standing tickets available, and students can contact Quinnipiac Ticket Manager Matt Calcagni if they would like to obtain one.

After Amodio, Richard defined Quinnipiac’s latest brand campaign “Ambition Unleashed.” He coined the words as a way to share the ambitions of what students achieve at Quinnipiac.

“We’ve had a lot of ads that focus on a lot of campus spaces and buildings,” Richard said. “More of it is going to relate to what is the end of our story… just reeling what made Quinnipiac special to them and what attracted them to here.”

“Ambition Unleashed” has been painted on the walls inside and outside buildings across the University. The words were also designed on t-shirts Richard, Ellet and Longchamp threw out to students who attended the event. The message has also been printed on billboards off-campus in Connecticut, New York and New Jersey. Richard shared that “Ambition Unleashed,” will also appear as an advertisement across broadcasting and streaming services like SNY, ESPN3 and Hulu.

Longchamp thinks highly of “Ambition Unleashed,” as a brand to attract prospective students to apply to Quinnipiac. He also believes it’s a way for current students to embrace the message as a motivator to make the most of their college experience.

“You only go through college once or twice in your life,” Longchamp said. “For current students, it’s more about finding their passion, finding that ambition to go out there and get their ambitions accomplished before they go out in the working world.”

After Richard, Longchamp presented several events scheduled to take place this semester. Some of those events featured SGA’s State of the QUnion (Feb. 16) and the Quinnipiac Student Programming Board’s Spring Week (Apr. 18-24).

Ellet was the last to speak at the event. He urged students to take part in meetings for the four advisory boards at Quinnipiac for Dining (every other Tuesday at 5 p.m.), First-Year (Sundays at 7 p.m.) Sophomore Advisory Board (Sundays at 7 p.m.) and the 1929 Scholarship Fund (TBD).

“We want every student to have their voice heard,” Ellett said. “So I would encourage you to think about the advisory board opportunities.”

More details on “Ambition Unleashed” will be announced in another event hosted tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m on the Mt. Carmel Piazza and the North Haven Cafeteria.