Chris Herndon ’22 and Cole Howard ’22
Chris and Cole are guided by a mission that puts every member of our community at the center of their work. They know that Holy Cross can be better for all, a place where each and every one of us works together as a community. A place where everyone feels welcomed, appreciated and connected.
Chris comes from a single family home, where he dealt with economic insecurity almost all of his life. When Holy Cross gave him an opportunity to come here, he knew it would be without his parents’ financial support. He picked up jobs selling fish, working as a construction laborer, and even refereed high school basketball and soccer. It has been a struggle to make ends meet for Chris, and that pressure has taken a toll on his mental health. However, this has driven Chris to want to make changes, as it is his belief in the community here that drives him to do what he does, and he’s not alone. Those who are economically challenged here at school face the same social pressure which can take a toll on mental health, and often make all of us feel left behind as we are afraid to voice our opinion out of fear of repercussions because we do not pay the full price here. That pressure takes a toll on mental health and as a campus we need to support everyone.
Cole has made it a priority in life to put others before himself. Service and community are at the forefront of everything he does. These values are reflected in his actions as he is a 3 time President of Hall Council, a former hospice volunteer at St. Mary’s Health Care Center and as a First-Year Orientation Leader. He has dedicated himself to helping others, whether that be in their final hours or in their first steps on the Hill. Cole has devoted his time to ensuring others have everything they need and he is willing to sacrifice his own needs for the good of others. Cole’s time on Hall Council has especially reflected these sacrifices. After having a hard time adjusting to campus his freshman year, and struggling to find a community, Cole decided to push for change. He ran for Hall Council in Clark and won, being elected to the role of President. During that year, Cole ran a number of events both for his own dorm and in collaboration with the other first-year dorms, all centered around community engagement. Cole ran again the last two years, and was elected President to the Carlumni Hall Council. Continuing with his mission, he successfully engaged with the community, bringing some of the largest numbers of attendees to a Hall Council event in recent years. Together, Chris and Cole recognize how difficult it is to find community. They both struggled to find their place here at Holy Cross and they are determined to make sure no one feels the same. With mental health, the student experience, the young alumni program, and an inclusive community platform at the forefront of their movement,, we believe that together we can create a campus where every student feels welcomed, connected, and appreciated!