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The academic and extracurricular landscape at Lasell has been dramatically altered since the class of 2012 arrived here in the fall of 2008. The campus has grown both in size and capacity, and it all started with this year’s graduating class.

What we now call the Van Winkle quad was essentially a hole in the ground when we got here. If your room was on the southern face of McClelland Hall during the 2008-2009 school year, you saw that change first hand. The 7 a.m. construction was an alarm clock for many in our class and was a sacrifice most probably would have preferred to avoid.

But it paid off. East and West were de­signed and built with our class, the biggest ever at that point, in mind. The class of 2012 was the first to occupy those new buildings, and they now stand as the twin pillars of a quad that has vastly improved student life and the appearance of the campus.

As fashion design students face increas­ing pressure with the approaching deadline for Runway 2012, they are privileged to work in the Donahue Center for Creative and Applied Arts. What was once a run down building hous­ing Plant Operations is now a sprawling space for fashion students to work the late hours that students in most other majors can’t even begin to comprehend.

There was no such thing as the Lasell Col­lege Rugby Club before the class of 2012 arrived. A small group of dedicated students with an idea and boundless determination changed that. It be­gan with constant battles for field space, funding, and acceptance by the college establishment and has evolved into one of the school’s largest teams and arguably the most popular sport on campus.

A concert on Marathon Monday was un­heard of when the class of 2012 arrived here four years ago. Now, it’s a tradition. Lasell College Radio saw an opportunity to create something special and capitalized on it.

The success of last year’s concert was built upon tremendously this year, and those who run LCR in the future will have the leaders from this year’s graduating class to thank for an event that students will look forward to for years to come.

Lasell’s NCAA athletic teams have thrived since 2008. The women’s soccer team, anchored by 2012 graduates, won back-to-back GNAC championships the last two seasons.

The seniors on the baseball team have built the program from the ground up. It’s grown from a club sport into an established varsity team that continues to improve.

The class of 2012 has also faced hardship together. When confronted with the untimely deaths of two classmates in one year, this year’s graduating class supported one another and carried on their lives with the memories of Jon Glenn and Jimmy Curtis forever with them.

The college is hardly recognizable com­pared to what this year’s graduating class arrived to four years ago. The class of 2012 set precedents and will leave behind a shining legacy that will benefit Lasell in perpetuity.