The Home Stretch

Time has Flown by…

I cannot believe that we are already approaching the end of the semester and finals. There are only two weeks left of classes! I just came back from a relaxing and enjoyable break seeing my family and my friends in Buffalo, but, I have to say, I really missed Holy Cross.

While the transition accompanied by the distance from Holy Cross to Buffalo has not been easy at times, when I went home for Thanksgiving break, I really missed being here. That’s when I realized that Holy Cross was becoming my second home. It is not an either-or relationship between my home in Buffalo and my home at Holy Cross, but, rather, it is a both-and relationship. I enjoy the sense of home I feel in Buffalo, and I enjoy the sense of home I feel at Holy Cross. I was excited to return, and arrival back on campus felt incredible.

These next two weeks of classes are bittersweet. As the work piles on, I am studying and working hard to finish the year strong, as we all are. However, I will miss all of my friends that I have made thus far and the connections I possess as I head into winter break and change classes for the spring. Right now, however, I am focusing on the fun I can have in the moment with my newfound family at Holy Cross before we have to depart and say goodbye for winter break.

My Montserrat Retreat and Instagram Takeover!

Montserrat Retreat at the Joyce Contemplative Center

For my Montserrat, which is Reading the Self, we had to partake in a retreat night at the Joyce Contemplative Center. I was excited to go and hang out with some of my friends! We boarded a bus and headed over to the JCC. It was beautiful. I had been there before, but I had not participated in a retreat there. We underwent a spiritual exercise during which we had to reflect on our time at Holy Cross so far. We reflected on our experiences, classmates, and professors. I felt hopeful after reflecting on so many positive facets that I have had the opportunity of experiencing since attending Holy Cross in the fall.

After that, we participated in a forty-five minute yoga session. Now, I am not a yoga person. I do not usually have the patience for it, and I can never relax enough to truly take away the meaningful vision that yoga encompasses. However, this time, I was able to stay present and in the moment during the yoga class. I even almost fell asleep. While I was not the best at the moves, I relaxed and felt at ease as I focused on my breathing and recollected my thoughts.

We ate dinner then, and the food was incredible! Everyone shared laughs, and we got to know our classmates in a different setting.

Instagram Takeover

I also had the opportunity to take over the Holy Cross Instagram this past week! I was so nervous at first because I did not know if people would like what I did in a day, but I stayed true to myself and reflected my authentic personality. It was so much fun! I ate dinner at Crossroads, went to the Science Library, and even visited Cool Beans and the Lobby Shop. It was a joyful experience, and I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to showcase a glimpse of life at Holy Cross.

A Weekend to Remember


During the month of October, excitement was ubiquitous. The leaves changed color on the Hill, and fall anticipation filled the air. The landscape, including beautiful mums and new signage in front of Hogan, welcomed many in October.

After fall break, we returned to the Presidential Inauguration and Family Weekend. President Rougeau was inaugurated during a beautiful ceremony, and we received t-shirts to commemorate his triumphant moment. For me, seeing President Rougeau’s inauguration was one of the most fulfilling experiences. I was watching history in the making, and seeing his family and many colleagues, as well as students and professors, applaud him and welcome him with open arms reinforced the sense of community of Holy Cross.

In addition to the inauguration, Holy Cross football played Colgate at Polar Park, the new stadium where the WooSox play. My family came in for family weekend, and we attended a tailgate and the game. Purple and white persisted throughout the stadium, and I had a blast!

Perhaps my best moment at Holy Cross so far occurred on a Saturday night in the Kimball Quad. After a day of celebration and a football game at Polar Park, we ran into President Rougeau in the quad. He was nothing but friendly and kind even though he had a busy day. My family and I talked to him for twenty minutes, and we asked him about all the pictures he was taking with people and what it was like being famous. Talking to the president on a Saturday night is something unique to Holy Cross. He even laughed at my joke! It was a great weekend filled with a lot of fun, and the laughter we all shared was the icing on the cake!

Welcome to Life on the Hill


Hello! My name is Mia Burgio, and I am going to be blogging my experience as a first-year student! I am looking forward to sharing my adventures with you as I begin my journey as a Holy Cross Crusader who is for and with others.

First Night on the Hill

The Friday night before move-in captured, in essence, the spirit of Holy Cross. My brother, J.T., is a second-year student at Holy Cross, and I was nervous but excited to join him. He was an orientation leader, so he moved in a week early. So, on Friday night, I went to Holy Cross to drop off some chicken wings for him and his friends (I’m from Buffalo, so this is a must), and, as I was walking to his dorm, I saw all of the orientation leaders headed to dinner. I recognized two of my summer orientation leaders, and, to my surprise, they both knew me from my tiny Zoom box in our weekly meetings. They waved to me, and, all of the sudden, all of the orientation leaders were cheering me on and welcoming me with much enthusiasm.

In my first five minutes on the Hill, I felt a sense of belonging. I knew I was supposed to be here, and the feeling of welcomeness eased my nerves in the best way possible. The friendly faces, positive attitudes, and captivating charisma of the orientation leaders reflected the true nature of Holy Cross. I already felt a part of something so special, and I did not even move in yet. As I went to bed in the hotel room that Friday night, I felt an overwhelming sense of anticipation for what was to come.

Move-in Day

When move in day arose, I sprang out of bed, eager to begin my new college life. After getting breakfast with my parents, we set off for the first move-in experience at Holy Cross. Immediately, I was greeted with nothing but joy. Students were singing together, dancing, and laughing as they all helped unload my car. I organized with my roommate, and we were on our way.

The final event with my parents before they left was Mass outside. It was beautiful, and the theme relayed in the service truly emphasized the values of the school. The faculty and staff stressed the notion that our next four years would be challenging, but they would be the most impactful if we worked hard, put in effort, and got involved. They promised us that they would support us when we are struggling and cheer us on when we accomplish our dreams. The sense of security they provided made me feel safe, and I knew I was in good hands.

The Goodbye

Saying goodbye to my parents was extremely difficult. We are very close and we live far away, so the distance was intimidating. My mom and I were crying throughout Mass. I could not even look at her without sobbing, so I barely made eye contact with her throughout the service. When Mass ended, we had to say goodbye. My dad reassured me that all would be okay and that he would always be there for me no matter what. As I sit here writing this with tears in my eyes, I still feel comforted by his words. My mom quoted Mother Teresa and told me to “Be the One.” This simple phrase is loaded with meaning. “Be the One.” Be the person who helps others. Be the person who serves others. Be the person who makes a difference. Be the person who lives, learns, loves, has fun, makes friends, and tries new things. Be the one who is kind. Be the one who is faith-filled. Be the one who puts in effort. Be the one who prioritizes school. Be the one. While being all of these things seemed impossible to me then, now, after having been here for a month, I realize that Holy Cross makes “Being the One” possible. Holy Cross fosters an environment that allows for such character traits to be built. Holy Cross has a commitment to these ideals, encouraging students to always “Be the One” in any situation they face. At Holy Cross, we are many who strive to “Be the One,” committed to making a difference and leaving a legacy.