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One students opinion on the oscars debacle

(Photo courtesy of Brian Snyder / Reuters) Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the 94th academy awards.

Max Valin
Connector Staff

If you tuned into the 94th Academy Awards on March 27, it’s probably safe to say that a disgruntled actor physically assaulting the host on live television was not on your bingo card for the night. However, at this point in 2022, is such a thing really outside the realm of possibility? The incident that occurred and the controversy that followed has been quite a ride – here are all the important details regarding what many are calling, the slap heard around the world.

Famed comedian Chris Rock has never been known to shy away from material that is delivered at the expense of others. So, when he went up on stage for a performance at the 94th Academy Awards, it was a relatively safe bet that people generally knew what to expect. He began doing what he does best, and for some time, had the entire building echoing with endless laughter. Eventually, he turned his focus to Jada Pinkett Smith, and delivered a one-liner that would fatefully reach the ears of millions. It became very clear that his wife being the butt of the joke did not sit well with Will Smith. Amidst the crowd’s reaction, he stepped up on stage, gave Chris one swift smack across the face, and sat back down – only to continue to curse him out on live television.

The event was shocking to the point where, for some time after it happened, many were convinced that the event was staged – for it was too outlandish and absurd to have been real. However, time would reveal that the slap, along with every emotion behind it, was indeed authentic, as were the passionate debates that followed. Many came to the side of Chris, believing Will’s reaction was petty and childish. Others argued that Will was justified in defending his wife. Twitter was in something of a civil war for the days following.

The day after the awards, Will Smith posted an apology for his actions on social media. Stating that he was regretful of his temperamental approach in dealing with the situation. It became clear that he was at least attempting to take responsibility for the incident and accept the consequences of his actions. In an unexpected addition to his reaction, however, Smith would announce his resignation from the Film Academy the following Friday. As a result of this, Will Smith will no longer be allowed to vote for the Oscars moving forward, though he is not disqualified from future nominations. Though the Academy claimed they asked him to leave the event, some sources have disputed this, and it is unclear if such a demand was actually made.

Though it may be understandable why Will was not pleased with the joke made by Rock, it cannot be understated that his reaction to the situation was horribly immature, and not how an adult should go about resolving conflict – especially when this adult has so many young fans who look to him as a role model due to his celebrity.   Every bit of backlash he has and will receive for his horribly poor decision-making skills is much deserved. It is unfortunate that a wildly successful career will now carry with it the stain that this event will undoubtedly leave on his public image for years to come.

As for Chris, it should probably go without saying that his immediate reaction to what happened was a sign of class – no acts of physical retaliation, and no attempt to dwell on the matter for too long. There was an awards ceremony that evening, and Rock was not going to let the petulant demeanor of one person ruin the night for everyone. Though he very clearly wanted to deliver another punchline after, he kept his composure and moved on. His actions here are commendable, and unlike his assaulter, Rock’s handling of the situation should be looked up to by people everywhere as exemplary behavior. Many would say that he does bear some of the blame as a result of the joke he told, but this could not be more of a point of disagreement for many – he was a comedian, making jokes, and it was in no way his fault that someone decided to take them the wrong way.

In short, Will Smith should very much be subject to the backlash of people everywhere for his uncontrolled, instinctive rage. Chris Rock, on the other hand, dealt with the situation like the class act he has continually been. The real hope, though? Perhaps next year, no such incident will have to occur to begin with.

Boston parking garage collapse highlights need for ongoing infrastructural initiatives

(Photo courtesy of Live Boston 617) The collapse of the Boston Government Center parking garage highlights the need for infrastructural initiatives to continue to prioritize human safety over development. 

Harrison Lee
Connector Editor

On March 26, a large portion of Boston’s Government Center parking garage collapsed, resulting in the fatality of Peter Monsini. In the wake of Monsini’s death, the City of Boston has continued to investigate the accident leading to the construction worker’s death. However, many are still questioning how the accident happened and the dangerous likelihood of such an accident occurring again based on the practices of construction and demolition of Boston’s infrastructure.

According to UMass Lowell’s Dr. TzuYang Yu, much of the speculated damage cannot be accounted for without understanding several components in infrastructure development. Yu, a Civil Engineering professor, explained the differences between the design and construction phases of development and how “miscommunication between designers and construction contractors can occur from overloading.” Dr. Yu explained that with the heavy use of concrete in construction projects such as the parking garage, many temporary supports are used in the skeletal phase of the building process “Concrete is like a super baby,” Yu said. “It grows up fast [and] construction could have removed [this] temporary support before it was ready.”

This overloading is related to one of Dr. Yu’s other theories regarding the cause of the collapse and how dynamic loading could have also played a role in the contractor’s efforts to stay on schedule at the expense of quality solidification. The case of a vibrating jackhammer is a simple example of how moving quickly to another task before the concrete has completely settled can disrupt the long-term stability. “Winter time doesn’t usually [permit the] cast of concrete,” Yu said. Thus, dynamic loading can certainly contribute to factors leading up to the accident.

Dr. Yu has also been a supporter and lead developer in solutions to prevent accidents, such as the parking garage, using sensors known as early warning systems. Unfortunately, many contractors and construction companies do not use these systems, and this is not a financial concern, but rather an uncertainty that comes with placing the sensors in the right places from the start.

One may wonder about the possibility of shifting focus from restoring and preserving infrastructure to building new structures. But this also comes with its own comprehensiveness. In a city like Boston, there is much concern about balancing the preservation of historical sites with building new structures. The city’s goal is to “find a way to protect [these] historical sites until all possibilities are exhausted.” This would also appear to be a reflection of Boston’s values, but given the city’s circumstances, it also isn’t the easiest task to build up from scratch. The same could be said about many other cities that possess historic properties, including Lowell.

Unlike Boston’s parking garage, the ongoing infrastructure initiatives in Lowell pertain to the bridges that connect the city across the Merrimack River. Many of these bridges are aging rapidly, and there is a need to take action to prevent a dangerous accidents soon. “The bottom line is to protect human lives,” Dr. Yu said.

“When we design structures, there is a design philosophy: factor of safety.” By multiplying the original design by a certain capacity to anticipate ambient change, designers in departments such as Dr. Yu’s can increase the longevity of a bridge’s life span, which according to Yu, is often expected to last on average 75 years. However, he went on to say, “in civil engineering, we know that structures get old. What we don’t know is how quickly they age. The question we have to ask is, to what point does the city or federal government have to intervene, by restoring the steel, or building a new one?”

This returns to determining whether initiatives should restore infrastructure or scrap the current structure to replace it entirely. It has proven to be a difficult task in both directions, with restoration often resulting in bridge shutdowns that slow down and back up traffic. It also increases an environmental strain by lengthening the commute of commerce-carrying tractor-trailer trucks that commonly output diesel exhaust.

Overall, every city faces construction and updating to maintain the established infrastructure that makes places like Lowell and Boston cities. But through all of the factors attributed to the design and construction phases of developing infrastructure, it seems important that cities continue prioritizing the safety of human life during ongoing development to avoid another accident like the fatality at the Government Center’s parking garage in the future.

Boston Celtics clinch the Playoffs as third seed in the Eastern Conference

(Photo courtesy Celtics’ Jayson Tatum dunks next to Pacers’ Buddy Hield

Matt Micale
Connector Editor

The Boston Celtics have been on a roll since the start of the new year. As of now, they sit at the third seed in the Eastern Conference with a record of 48-30. They sit only a game and a half behind the conference’s top seed, the Miami Heat. They have already clinched a playoff spot in one of the Eastern Conference’s tightest races ever.

The Celtics’ most recent game was a 128-123 victory over the Indiana Pacers last Friday night. This marked the Pacers’ sixth loss straight. They currently have the fifth most losses in the league. Celtics’ stars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown both scored over 30 points the eighth time this season. Tatum had 31 to Brown’s 32. Center Al Horford scored 17 points with ten rebounds leading to a Celtics’ victory. For the Pacers, Oshae Brissett and Jalen Smith scored 17 points apiece. However, this was not enough to defeat the dominate Boston team.

There were a couple of injury scares for the Celtics their past game. Both Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown got minorly injured, but not enough for them to miss any future games. In contrast, player Robert Williams was seriously injured on Sunday with a torn meniscus in his left knee. He underwent a successful surgery; however, he won’t return to play until the second round of the Eastern Conference playoffs. Williams was the 27th pick in the 2018 draft for the Celtics and was initially signed for a four-year deal. He averaged ten points and 9.6 rebounds in his 61 games played this season.

On the injury, Williams said, “I was hurt … I was so hurt, because I knew something wasn’t right. I could tell it was something that was gonna stop me from playing. So I really didn’t even want to find out what it was at one point. Like, at one point, I was sitting on a bench, like the end of the third, and I knew something was wrong but I was so scared to even stand up.”

On a more positive note, Celtics guard Marcus Smart is a contender for this year’s defensive player of the year award. Other contenders include Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert, Memphis Grizzlies Jaren Jackson Jr. and the Miami Heat’s Bam Adebayo. Gobert has one the award three times in the past four seasons. The award has been historically difficult for guards to win.

Reiterating, this has been one of the closest playoff contests in Eastern Conference history. Entering last Tuesday, the top four seeds of the conference were within a single loss of one another. The teams included the Heat, the Bucks, the Celtics, and the Philadelphia 76ers. Rather fittingly, the Heat faced the Celtics and the Bucks faced 76ers in the past week. The Heat and the Bucks both won their games on the road.

Next up for the Celtics will be a showdown against the Washington Wizards on Sunday at home. Hopefully, they will pull off the win to be one step closer to earning a top seed for the playoffs.

UMass Lowell to see tuition hike in upcoming school year

(Photo courtesy of UMass Lowell) Alongside an increase in tuition, residential students can also expect to see a spike in housing rates for the 2022-2023 school year.

Qinglong Diep
Connector Staff

As many colleges and universities are considering increasing tuition for the next academic year, University of Massachusetts Lowell students will see a potential hike in tuition and fees for the 2022-2023 school year. The last tuition and fees increase for University of Massachusetts Lowell was in 2019.

According to the university’s website, the proposed total tuition and fees for in-state undergraduates will see an increase of $384 and out-of-state undergraduate students will see a $826 increase. In-state graduate students will also see an increase of $366 for total tuition and fees while out-of-state graduate students will see an increase of $660.

Looking at the breakdown per semester for tuition and fees, in-state undergraduate students will be paying $192 more per semester while out-of-state undergraduate students will be paying $413 more per semester. In-state graduate students will be paying $183 more per semester while out-of-state graduate students will be paying $330 more per semester.

Housing and meal plans will also increase for next school year. Students wishing to dorm in Fox Hall, Concordia Hall, Leitch Hall, Bourgeois Hall or the Inn and Conference Center will see an increase of $210 for the year. Donahue Hall and Sheehy Hall rooms will increase by $230 for the year. University Suites and Riverview East Suites will increase by $250 for the year. Living in Riverview Suites West or River Hawk Village (including rooms that are a River Hawk Village Studio, River Hawk Village Standard, River Hawk Village Deluxe or River Hawk Village Townhouse) will increase by $280 for the year.

The Office of Residence Life claimed that there would be brand new washing and drying machines installed in common laundry rooms in summer 2022 for next school year. Considering laundry services are to be included in the housing cost for next year, students will no longer have to worry about inserting quarters or using debit or credit cards to use these new machines.

Additionally, Residence Life also announced that room occupancy will return to normal at Leitch, Bourgeois, Fox and Concordia Halls for next school year after occupancies were reduced for COVID-19 concerns.

There are three different meal plans for next school year, which the Unlimited 400 is a new one according to the office’s email sent. The Unlimited 400 meal plan costs $5,520 for the school year, which costs $2760 per semester. As the title suggests, the meal plan gets unlimited meal swipes at any dining hall plus $400 Riverhawk dollars per semester.

The Unlimited 200 Meal Plan, which was renamed from the Unlimited Meal Plan, will go up by $150 for the year. This is an increase of $75 per semester.

The Apartment Meal Plan will go up by $120 for the year. This is an increase of $60 per semester.

Parking Rates for the 2022-2023 academic year have not been announced yet.

The University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees will approve tuition and fees rates for next academic year sometime in the spring of 2022 for all the UMass schools.

NCAA March Madness enters the Final Four

(Photo courtesy Final Four logo over basketball

Tanner Hume
Connector Editor

March Madness has been a wild ride for college basketball fans everywhere, from 15th seed Saint Peters playing bracket wrecker simulator to an eight seed making it to the Final Four, this year’s March Madness tournament has been a great one. With the Final Four set to take place this weekend, it is time to take a look at the four teams that are fighting for the right to play in the National Championship game.

#1 Kansas: After some disappointing ends to their March Madness appearances, with the most notable being a second-round exit in 2019 to 14th seeded Auburn, Kansas is looking pretty solid heading into the Final Four. Leading the way for the Jayhawks are senior guard Ochai Agbaji (18.9pts/GP), junior guard Christian Braun (14.3pts/GP), sophomore forward Jalen Wilson (11.0pts/GP) and senior forward David McCormack (10.1pts/GP). This weekend, Kansas will take on second seeded Villanova for the right to play for the national title.

#2 Duke: After falling to Michigan State in the Elite 8 in 2019, Duke makes its return to the big picture and hopes to get itself back on top of the college basketball world. Freshman forward Paolo Banchero (17.1pts/GP), junior forward Wendell Moore (13.5pts/GP), sophomore center Mark Williams (11.3pts/GP) and freshman forward AJ Griffin (10.5pts/GP) lead the way and hope to be the more superior team in North Carolina, as they prepare to face the eighth seeded UNC Tar Heels this weekend.

#2 Villanova: After a stunning loss to the 13th seeded Purdue in the second round of the 2019 March Madness tournament, Villanova has definitely rebounded and is looking like a more legitimate team this time around. Their core is led by the talents of senior guard Collin Gillespie (15.6pts/GP), junior guard Justin Moore (14.8pts/GP), senior forward Jermaine Samuels (11.1pts/GP) and senior guard Caleb Daniels (10.2pts/GP). If Villanova wants to play for the national title, they have to get past a strong team in first seeded Kansas to do so.

#8 UNC: The new lowest seed to make it this far in this year’s tournament after extinguishing the Cinderella team in Saint Peters, UNC is making its bid for the national title well known and is trying to rebound after falling to the 14th seeded Auburn in the Sweet 16 in the 2019 tournament. Leading the charge for the Tar Heels are junior forward Armando Bacot (16.5pts/GP), sophomore guard Caleb Love (15.7pts/GP), senior forward Brady Manek (15.2pts/GP) and sophomore guard RJ Davis (13.4pts/GP). With a tense matchup with cross-state rival Duke set for this weekend, UNC needs to bring their A-game in order to do the unthinkable.

With the Final Four set with Kansas taking on Villanova, and a heated matchup between Duke going head-to-head with UNC this weekend, it will be a very watch-worthy Final Four, and millions will be tuning in to see who will fight for the right to play in the National Championship Game.

Sleeper director’s film turns 20, upon covering a 70 year old narrative about a very ‘Quiet American’

(Photo Courtesy of Miramax Films) “The Quiet American” celebrates the 20th Anniversary of it’s initial theatrical release.

Harrison Lee
Connector Editor

Director Phillip Noyce may not be one of the most prominent names when it comes to filmmaking. However, the working man behind “Patriot Games,” “Clear and Present Danger” and “Salt” has produced quite a few films in the past. Beyond the notable action of mentioned titles, Noyce has proven himself to be quite capable of filmmaking at an even greater level of maturity. As one of his masterpieces, “The Quiet American”, turns 20 years old, this film is a testament to Noyce’s style and skill.

Released on September 9, 2002, “The Quiet American” adapts Graham Greene’s novel of the same title and follows Thomas Fowler, played by Michael Caine, a lazy but firmly neutral British journalist living in 1952 Vietnam. Despite the ongoing French Indo-China War, Fowler is adamant about remaining in the country. Fowler is married to a catholic wife in London, but through the smoke of opium addiction, he has found new delight in a younger Vietnamese girl, Phuong, played by Do Thi Hai Yen. Yet, when a polite and soft spoken American, played by Brendan Fraser, arrives in Fowler’s life,  the relationship and life that Fowler has come to acquire becomes threatened.

“The Quiet American” may seem like a film focused on the love triangle between these three characters, but the big picture is undoubtedly Phillip Noyce at his best. This film does not possess much action and the violent sequences are paced slow enough to match the drama. As a result, this may weaken the intensity of certain sequences. Nonetheless, “The Quiet American” fits perfectly into the spy genre as an espionage drama film that can be taken more seriously than any previous Noyce project.

That serious tone may negatively impact the entertainment factor. However, in attempts to remain faithful to the novel, Noyce clearly prioritized adapting the film as closely as possible with a few minor revisions that allow the movie to convey a similar meaning to the original book. The presentation isn’t over-styled either. Noyce has been known for his workman-like directing and while the world of “The Quiet American” is immersive enough with the signature and authentic Vietnamese sets, the style of the film does not overshadow the substance.

This film is also perhaps easier to follow in its twists and turns than “Clear and Present Danger”, and although veering more into artistic territory, there is still plenty of grey for the characters to play in. There is a reason why Michael Caine received an Oscar nomination for best actor from this film. Yet, Brendan Fraser finds himself in one of the most sophisticated roles in his career. Considering the title of the film regards his character, he absolutely steals the show, and with a performance of great subtly as well. Then, there’s Do Thi Hai Yen, who although did not speak a drop of English, convinces audiences that she understands the basics of the language when sharing the screen with her fellow cast members.

The cast was chosen well. The story revolving around France’s involvement in Vietnam rather than the U.S. is refreshing. The cinematography has aged accordingly, and Craig Armstrong’s soundtrack blends modern queues of 2002 quite nicely with a 1952 Vietnam at war. All of the ingredients to make a good film are present. But that presentation may not cater to a wide audience so kindly. This movie is a war drama with espionage, romance and a few sparks of action. But, in covering all of these elements, it is impossible to cater to specific audiences who are looking for just one of these components, and these audiences may find the experience lacking.

The narrative is quite diverse. But, for a 1 hour and 41 minute runtime, it feels rather slow in unraveling the mystery. As a war drama, the craftsmanship of “The Quiet American” is far from an action film. It feels much more mature and sophisticated than “Clear and Present Danger”. At the expense of popcorn entertainment, this film possesses an acquired taste that may be most suitable for audiences who are interested in a slower and darker cinematic experience. Casual viewers are likely better off watching Noyce’s other adaptations, but for those who read the Graham Greene novel or are familiar with Noyce’s espionage films of the past, “The Quiet American” is certainly a compelling watch.

Grade: A-

A candidate for trustee interview: David Levine

(Photocourtesy of David Levine) “David Levine is running for student trustee against his opponent, Mina Lam.”

Qinglong Diep
Connector Staff

David Levine, who is a Student Government Association senator for the Manning School of Business at UMass Lowell, is running for student trustee to advocate for changes that need to happen at the university. Levine is a junior, majoring in business administration with a concentration in accounting.

Levine served on the Finance and Governance Committee back in his freshman year. He was previously the chairman of the Public Relations Committee from April 2020 to April 2021. Back in 2020, he was also the chairman for the Campus Events Committee and still is today.

One of his experiences that he had during his time in the Student Government Association was having a close relationship with Chancellor Moloney and her executive cabinet during a monthly lunch. This helped him to give him a better idea of how the university works.

Levine says, “The student trustee needs to be in constant communication with the chancellor and vice-chancellors, and I believe it is important to elect a candidate who already has established connections and experience with the executive cabinet.”

When the next chancellor is selected, Levine plans to work with their office and arrange meetings with students either in person or virtually. Levine said, “As the next leader of this institution, the students need to know we are in good hands. I have full faith in the search committee and look forward to meeting the new chancellor.”

Levine strongly believes that changes to UMass Lowell dining have to be made for the future.

Levine said that the main focus right now should be raising dining capacity. “This means reopening Southwick, Hawk’s Nest and late-night weekend options,” said Levine. “Many college students, myself included, are night owls. However, we are on our own for meals after 8 p.m. (7 p.m. on weekends). This needs to change, and I will fight for this change.”

In terms of meal plan cost, he says that it did not make sense to charge the same priced meals plan due to several locations not reopened since closing.

Levine will advocate to the UMass Board of Trustees to fight to get rid of unnecessary increases. Levine says, “these increases are hurting students trying to receive a fair education.” He will persuade the board by talking to students who are struggling with loans and bringing their testimonials to the board.

From his perspective, he believes that the increases to attend UMass Lowell for next school year are not justified at all.

“Housing and meal plans were the same price this year as they were in 2019, however, three major venues were closed. Both will increase next year. With meal plans, we need to advocate to reopen all locations and bring back late-night options. Our meal plan prices do not match the value of the on-campus options. With the residence halls, there have not been any major renovations in the past five years, yet we still see price increases,” said Levine.

Levine believes that UMass Lowell has some work to do to be more diverse, equitable and inclusive to set the standards at all UMass schools.

In an interview, he mentions that there was a racial bias incident in Concordia Hall in March 2021 where there were hate messages on post-it notes. He said that the university’s response was minimal and that there is an active investigation going on and there was a meeting with students that lived in this residence hall.

He believes that the campus should communicate together on why this type of speech is hateful and harmful.

Additionally, he also said that the university needs to address the hate speakers that regularly come to South Campus.

If elected as student trustee, he would include the official student trustee email address in his campaign Instagram account. Additionally, he would plan to host regularly scheduled office hours at UCrossing Suite 243 and also over Zoom to meet with students for those that cannot meet in person.

Additionally, he also mentions that he plans to work with the Public Relations Committee to share the topics covered during trustee meetings to raise student awareness of what happens during these types of meetings.

Club Spotlight: Folk Dance Club

(Photo courtesy of Glen Cote) “UMass Lowell’s Folk Dance club members dancing during a club meeting.”

Emily Teague
Connector Editor

Every Tuesday at seven, UMass Lowell’s Folk Dance Club comes together in the Campus Recreation Center and over Zoom to share two hours of folk dancing, bringing people and cultures together.

The club was founded in 2019 by Sarah Bustin, who is a physics student and current president of the club, and is taught by folk dance instructor Andy Taylor-Blenis. Bustin said, “the MIT folk dance club was derecognized because they didn’t have enough student membership, and I thought: well, we really need to get the folk dancing going back at the college level. So I started an email list to gain interest, and I asked Andy if she would come and teach, and she said she would, and by that April we had our first dance with live music.”

The club’s first dance brought in 50 people and featured live music. Since then, the club has arranged to bring in paid guest instructors to teach folk dances from different areas of expertise. Following the onset of remote learning, the club began meeting over Zoom—a practice they’ve kept alongside meeting in person due to its popularity with its members both in the state and across the country.

People from around the world brought folk dances and music from their cultures to the United States, where these dances are still practiced today. “The United States ends up being a place where it gets frozen in time,” Taylor-Blenis says.

Traditional folk dances from countries like Ireland, Hungary and Armenia have been preserved in the United States and even eventually brought back to their countries of origin by dance teachers that had been living the United States.

These dances and their music have also changed through travel and time. Taylor-Blenis said, “Oftentimes, what happened in the past was somebody would go to a country, they would learn all these regional dances, come back, and go: ‘folk dancers aren’t going to want all this,’ so what they did was they took a piece of music, which came from a region, took the steps that came from that region, and they put those steps to fit into that music. And that is what they presented to folk dancers.”

Bustin said the club does not teach dances that are religously significant or otherwise specific to members of a certain culture.

The club shares dances and music from a range of cultures spanning from across the globe. Club members can also request dances for the class to learn and dance. In the month of March, the club taught a variety of dances including an Irish dance, an Armenian Kurdish dance, a Pontic dance, Romanian dances, Greek dances and more.

Along with the preserving and sharing of culture, folk dancing can provide the movement, expression and connection to elevate moods and build community. Bustin said, “[Folk dancing] helps me a lot because I also have depression, and I feel better after I leave dances. And another way it’s helped me is that–I’m a lesbian, and I feel like I can express myself when I’m dancing. Especially with contra dances, because you’ll see guys wearing skirts a lot of times—the people switch roles a lot. It’s starting to happen more in international dance too, and there’ll be gender free dancing, and it’s kind of anything goes, and it just feels really good to be able to be myself and come out to the whole community.”

The Folk Dance Club welcomes interested dancers of all experience levels and personalities.  “People don’t realize that the shyest people are the ones who do really well in dance. They don’t have to have conversations—the conversation is written on the floor. The movement, the connection to the hands, the conversation is there, and you don’t have to talk to anybody. You just walk in, and you take hands, and you join the circle, and you don’t have to be perfect,” Taylor-Blenis said.

Those looking to dance with the club can sign a waiver to drop in on any Tuesday or can officially join on UMass Lowell’s Engage. Taylor-Blenis says, “people don’t expect perfection. Come and make mistakes, and then make your way through it, and come and make some more mistakes and make your way through those.”