Alumni donate mums to beautify off-campus houses

Two Quinnipiac alumni volunteered to spruce up the 24 university-owned houses in the Hamden neighborhood last Friday.
The alumni donated 98 mums, which were planted on student’s property living on New Rd., Whitney Avenue, Eramo Terrace and Lucien Drive.
Alumnus John LaViola, a retired lanscaper, helped plant the mums with Quinnipiac’s maintenance department and a private contractor.
“I think this will beautify the houses,” LaViola said. “It’s done to get a better feeling from the neighborhood. The little things will soften the existence of the university.”
The original plan was to donate ten to 40 mums, but those numbers grew higher.
Alumna Anne Balogh, who lives in the town of Hamden said, “This was an idea of neighborly thoughtfullness.”
She thought planting mums would be a small idea, but liked the concept.
LaViola and Balogh took pictures of the mums at each house to present their work.
Students living in the off-campus houses explained their thoughts on the idea.
Ian Fairclough, a sophomore history major said, It’s nice to know that people appreciate us and that we are welcome here.”
Cindy Schwarz, a resident assistant on Lucien Dr. said, “It’s a very nice gesture. Every little bit helps the property that we live on.”
Joe Rubertone, director of the maintenance department, and his crew decided to participate in the event.
“Anything we can do to improve “town-gown” relations is certainly worthwhile,” he said.
LaViola pointed out that though Quinnipiac has not solved all the problems, “this is a good start.”
Matt Delaney, a sophomore media production major said, “Neighbors expected us to bring negative things into the area. This is a start to represent our positive attitudes.”
Balogh said generously, “Nice things happen when you don’t plan them and this was not planned.”