The lobby of the Culinary Arts building at Lorain County Community College was the hubbub for literary enrichment on April 14. The LCCC Student Senate teamed up with the college’s English organization, the Lorain Writer’s Society (LWS), to put on a Pizza, Pop and Poetry event.
The senate originally had a goal of creating an event that would both bring students together for a fun outpouring of creativity as well as celebrating April’s standing as National Poetry Month. Pizza, Pop and Poetry was the catchy slogan to catch community attention to draw them into the true cause of the gathering, which was a poetry reading. The event managed to create a real bond between those in attendance who chose to share their work, and fostered a sense of true campus community togetherness, which was truly the intended outcome.
“It was fantastic,” said Kim Greenfield, professor of English at LCCC, who attended the event. “Once the door opens and someone starts off, it becomes a really powerful thing to get up and read your work.” She encouraged her creative writing classes to attend and many of her students also read samples of their work. “It was really student focused. I think it’s great for students to hear other student writers.” She expressed the pride she took in listening to her students get up and present their thoughts in front of their peers and professors. “It really is a brave thing to do,” she said.
Distinguished professor, Bruce Weigl, was the guest speaker at the event and introduced the speakers to kick-off the readings. Weigl is a published author, poet, and inspiring scholarly presence at the school to students and staff alike. Like Greenfield, Weigl also encouraged his students to read at the event.
For students, the opportunity to share in their freedom of speech and expression is key, and the student senate and LWS provided the perfect forum to do just that.
“It was a great experience to partner with LWS and I think it was a great event for writers,” said student senator, Jaden Cataldo.
“We definitely need to strengthen our arts program here at LCCC, and I think this was great and had a big impact. I personally believe it was the student senate’s best event.”
Poetry readings have been held at the school before, so this repeat event went over as an extreme hit, and the consensus of most in attendance was that they would appreciate the college doing something like it again. “I would really like to make it an annual event,” said Cataldo. “I do hope that the senate continues it as an celebration of National Poetry Month.”
For those interested in the submission or sharing of their work, they can also participate in the North Coast Review, a campus community literary journal that publishes a range of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, articles, commentary, reviews and artwork by those at LCCC. Students, faculty, or alumni of LCCC can visit the North Coast Review website, or contact Weigl or Greenfield, who are both editors of the publication.