Leighah Beausoleil, a third year student at Framingham State University, is a student leader active in speaking out for the students at FSU. As the Associate Editor at The Gatepost student newspaper, where she has written many outstanding news articles. The Gatepost is one of the key opportunities for civic engagement at our campus, and one of the most demanding student leadership commitments. She began at the paper during her first year and has risen quickly through the ranks as her peers recognized her ability, commitment, judgment, and maturity. She has worked at the University’s Chris Walsh Center for Educators and Families in MetroWest and as a Peer Mentor to her fellow students. She is currently working with Dr. Desmond McCarthy, a professor in the English Department, on an honors thesis focused on simulacra in the novels of Don DeLillo.
Many studies have shown the vital role local newspapers play in the promotion of civic engagement. As a journalist, I have the opportunity to inform communities on various issues and opportunities for change by giving the public a voice. For example, this past summer I covered the creation of a new center for people who are food and housing insecure to seek resources and a place to come together and relax. Through my article published in the local paper, I was able to illustrate the housing crisis that has only worsened due to COVID-19, inform people on a new way to seek resources, and encourage the public to find ways they themselves can help others, such as through donations of essential items. I have written many other articles of this nature and continue to seek ways to serve communities through my role as a journalist as well as contribute to those communities hands on. As FSU’s Newman Civic Fellow, I hope to further help communities and develop my own civic engagement as well as encourage that of others.