Emerson College's student newspaper

The Berkeley Beacon

Emerson College's student newspaper

The Berkeley Beacon

Emerson College's student newspaper

The Berkeley Beacon

Vivi Smilgius

Vivi Smilgius, Editor-in-Chief

Vivi Smilgius (she/her) is a junior journalism major who served as The Beacon’s Assistant Express News Editor, Deputy Express News Editor and Assistant Sports Editor before becoming Editor-in-Chief. Raised in Indiana, Vivi is The Beacon’s resident Midwesterner and ranch dressing defender. Her journalistic interests include climate change, feminist issues, sports, hip-hop and fashion.

Latest from Vivi Smilgius
“Her Loss” didn’t live up to its potential

“Her Loss” didn’t live up to its potential

November 9, 2022

On Friday, Nov. 4, rappers Drake and 21 Savage dropped the 16-track project “Her Loss,” produced under Drake’s record label, OVO Sound. The two have teamed up for a handful of projects before...

Illustration by Rachel Choi

Wisconsin women’s volleyball deserves your respect

November 2, 2022

After a dynamic week of Big 10 play, the University of Wisconsin women’s volleyball team advanced to no. 3 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association poll. The team ascended two spots after a clean...

Hurricane Fiona hit the Caribbean as a category one tropical storm on Sept. 18.

Hurricane Fiona exacerbates Puerto Rico’s electricity crisis

October 5, 2022

When she’s not at Emerson, sophomore business of creative enterprises major Pamela Matos lives in Guaynabo, a rural Puerto Rican town roughly five miles from the island’s capital, San Juan. Guaynabo...

From top left to bottom right: Emerson alumni Sam Crimmins, André Archimbaud, Gaby Dunn, Dustin Straube, Steven Rowley and Kasey Fielding. / courtesy

Safe spaces, section 8 and student loan debt: Emerson alums say they (mostly) don’t regret the financial risk

August 30, 2022

For many freshly graduated Emersonians, monthly loan payments are a harsh awakening to the real world of work—or lack thereof—as creatives. While movements toward student loan debt relief have alleviated...

The Emerson womens lacrosse seniors. From left to right: Hannah Beck, Julia Mallon, Amelia Toscano, Julia Burns, Ainsley Basic.

Women’s lacrosse says bye to four seniors, see you later to one

April 21, 2022

After years of winless seasons and canceled games, the Emerson women’s lacrosse team rebuilt its roster and posted its best record since joining the NEWMAC in 2014. The senior class played a key role...

College, city work toward climate damage mitigation

College, city work toward climate damage mitigation

April 21, 2022

As the world feels the effects of climate change, Boston attempts to limit damages—but the question of whether its action plan is adequate remains unanswered. The city’s climate action plan, released...

Senior midfielder Skyler Celotto was one of two players to join Emersons 100-point club this weekend.

Men’s lacrosse adds to 100-point club, breaks records

April 13, 2022

March proved to be a milestone month for the Emerson men’s lacrosse team as two players joined the Lions’ 100-point club, and another broke the single-season scoring record. Graduate attacker Austin...

Andriivskyi Descent, Kyiv. Photo by Karina Jha.

Emerson students organize fundraiser, vigil in support of Ukraine

April 6, 2022

The war in Ukraine wreaked havoc on families around the globe—including those of two Emerson students, who have taken the chance to do something about it. Journalism major Natalie Vasileff, and writing,...

As promised, Cheez-Its continues to ‘defy our Cheezpectations’—a little too much

As promised, Cheez-Its continues to ‘defy our Cheezpectations’—a little too much

April 6, 2022

From the second they started, it became clear that no aspect of this year’s Academy Awards would be relaxing. Those who sought respite in the commercial breaks, however, did not find it. One particularly...

Emerson mens volleyball team setting up an attack.

‘It feels like it just started’: men’s volleyball season ends with Senior Day split

April 6, 2022

Arm in arm with family and coaching staff, Emerson seniors Josh Elliot, Jackson Gordon, and Rory Dobbins walked onto the volleyball court for photos.  Behind the seniors, the walls of the Bobbi Brown...

Emersons Walker Building.

Emerson to offer health and social change, media psychology majors starting 2023

March 30, 2022

Indicating an increased focus on the intersection of communications and health, Emerson will introduce two new majors starting in the fall of 2023: health and social change and media psychology. Both...

For some Emerson professors, Women’s History Month showcases oppression, not accomplishment

For some Emerson professors, Women’s History Month showcases oppression, not accomplishment

March 23, 2022

Women’s History Month seeks to acknowledge female accomplishment and success, but some activists believe it points to a larger systemic problem: the continued oppression of women in America and beyond.  For...

Hailey Akau

Linking clothing and queerness might ‘boost visibility,’ but it also encourages stereotypes

March 23, 2022

Last Wednesday afternoon, the New York Post tweeted a link to an article titled “‘Dressing like a lesbian’ is the sexy and ‘powerful’ new fashion trend.”  The image accompanying the tweet...

Junior setter Jackson Gordan in the You Can Play games on March 19, 2022.

Men’s volleyball splits record in annual Pride-themed games

March 23, 2022

The Emerson men’s volleyball team left Saturday’s “You Can Play” games with a split record, sweeping Colby-Sawyer College and losing to Regis College in a hard-fought five-set match. Played...

Former Lions volleyball player Kat Westbrook accumulated 151 kills and 58 digs in the 2012 season.

Remembering former Lions volleyball player Kat Westbrook

March 23, 2022

A key contributor to Emerson’s women’s volleyball team, Katherine Westbrook ‘16 died of a fall on March 8, at the age of 28 years old. “She was a very vibrant young woman. She had a lot of talents,...

An ECPD patrol vehicle.

ECPD responds to campus security bypass

March 16, 2022

The Emerson College Police Department provides the Incident Journal to The Beacon every week. Beacon staff edit the Incident Journal for style and clarity but not for content. Monday, Feb. 28 ECPD...

Appreciation without appropriation: the internal conflict of consuming Black media as a white person

Appreciation without appropriation: the internal conflict of consuming Black media as a white person

March 2, 2022

One of my most vivid memories from late-middle and early high school is riding the bus, headphones in, listening to Kendrick Lamar’s “good kid, m.A.A.d city” and thinking, “God, this is good.” Allow...

An ECPD patrol vehicle.

ECPD provides medical assistance, responds to trespassers

March 2, 2022

The Emerson College Police Department provides the Incident Journal to The Beacon every week. Beacon staff edit the Incident Journal for style and clarity but not for content. Tuesday Feb. 22  ECPD...

Emerson graduate student Carlie Brainard is set to run this years Boston Marathon. Courtesy Carlie Brainard.

Emerson graduate student to run Boston Marathon

February 24, 2022

When Emerson graduate student Carlie Brainard finished her undergraduate degree at Iona College last May, she decided it was time for a new challenge. “It’s as simple as one night, I decided I wanted...

Emerson will remove plexiglass dividers installed in classrooms preceding the Fall 2021 semester.

Plexiglass shields to be removed from classrooms upon faculty request

February 24, 2022

Emerson will remove plexiglass dividers installed in classrooms preceding the Fall 2021 semester. According to Emerson’s assistant vice president of facilities and campus services Duncan Pollock,...

‘Poor core’ is only an aesthetic for those who have the choice

‘Poor core’ is only an aesthetic for those who have the choice

February 24, 2022

There’s a confusing and irritating dichotomy when a student wearing tattered clothing and corded earbuds pulls a $2,000 laptop and a $500 pair of studio headphones out of their Louis Vuitton backpack. Chances...

An ECPD patrol vehicle.

Incident Journal: ECPD responds to fire alarm

February 16, 2022

The Emerson College Police Department provides the Incident Journal to The Beacon every week. Beacon staff edit the Incident Journal for style and clarity but not for content. Monday Feb. 7 ECPD...

Senior Associate Vice President of Human Resources Shari Stier will leave Emerson to take a position at Fenway Health. (photo courtesy of Fenway Health)

Senior Associate Vice President of Human Resources to leave Emerson for Fenway Health

February 15, 2022

Emerson Senior Associate Vice President of Human Resources announced she will leave the college on Mar. 4 to start a new position in the Boston area. Shari Stier will serve as Chief People Officer at...

The college will show Senseless Smoke, a film based on the experiences of several Boston youths, as one of several events in celebration of Black History Month.

Emerson to host panels, events during Black History Month

February 10, 2022

Emerson will host several events in celebration of the nationwide observance of Black History Month, including panels, keynote speakers, and roundtable discussions throughout the month of February. “The...

Snow fluttering down on Boylston Street.

Emerson announces loosened COVID-19 protocols starting Feb. 7

February 4, 2022

The college will update its protocols on Feb. 7, allowing non-Emerson guests inside non-residential spaces and requiring community members to get COVID tested just once a week, announced a community-wide...

The new year is the perfect excuse for total self-reinvention— here’s how

The new year is the perfect excuse for total self-reinvention— here’s how

February 4, 2022

Every time Jan. 1 rapidly approaches, with it comes dozens of Instagram posts announcing fitness journeys, wardrobe purges, and a slew of other reformatory gauntlets disguised as New Year’s resolutions.  Some...

Incident Journal: ECPD provides medical assistance, responds to disturbances

Incident Journal: ECPD provides medical assistance, responds to disturbances

February 2, 2022

The Emerson College Police Department provides the Incident Journal to The Beacon every week. Beacon staff edit the Incident Journal for style and clarity but not for content. Monday, January 24 ECPD...

FIRE, working with Emersons chapter of TPUSA, hired a truck with the phrase Emerson Kinda Sus to circle Emersons Boston campus.

Turning Point USA responds to suspension with ‘Kinda Sus’ ad campaign

January 27, 2022

Months after being accused of propagating anti-Chinese rhetoric, Emerson’s chapter of Turning Point USA has mounted an advertising campaign targeting the college for “abandoning its promise of free...

Phi Alpha Tau hopes to change culture after 18-month hiatus

Phi Alpha Tau hopes to change culture after 18-month hiatus

January 27, 2022

Content Warning: This article contains mentions of sexual assault.  Phi Alpha Tau will return to action this semester, marking the end of the fraternity’s 18-month hiatus in response to a series...

The 2010’s “Twee style” is making a comeback. We can’t let fatphobia return with it.

The 2010’s “Twee style” is making a comeback. We can’t let fatphobia return with it.

January 26, 2022

In today’s environment of social media and fast fashion, trends come and go faster than ever. But fashion isn’t the only thing that can be trendy— body types, societal attitudes, and morals all fall...

Patriots’ season ends in underwhelming loss to Bills

Patriots’ season ends in underwhelming loss to Bills

January 20, 2022

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Students walk in front of The Colonial Building residence hall on Boylston St.

Emerson reopens residence halls, campus eateries to Boston students

January 14, 2022

The college will reopen its residence halls and campus eateries to Boston students in the coming weeks, announced Emerson Dean of Campus Life Jim Hoppe in a community-wide email sent Thursday evening. Beginning...

Emerson students having classes.

‘Everything is out the window’: College returns to in-person learning amid unprecedented COVID surge

January 12, 2022

Less than a week into the spring 2022 semester, Emerson has already reported 228 positive COVID-19 tests, leading to uncertainty regarding the rest of the semester amid rising cases statewide. Emerson’s...

A sign on the window of Emersons coronavirus testing site at Tufts Medical Center.

Testing center closes early due to heating issues

January 11, 2022

Emerson’s COVID-19 testing site closed early today due to “heating issues” at Tufts Medical Center, according to a community-wide email sent by the college’s “COVID Lead” and Associate Vice...

Emerson is now mask-optional in all campus spaces except classrooms.

Emerson to limit in-person events for first week of spring semester

January 2, 2022

To rebuild the “Emerson bubble,” the college will operate almost entirely virtually for the first week of its spring semester, according to a community-wide email from Vice President and Dean of Campus...

Emerson to require boosters, additional testing for spring semester

Emerson to require boosters, additional testing for spring semester

December 9, 2021

Emerson will require all community members to receive a COVID-19 booster shot prior to the spring semester amid a drastic rise in COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts following the Thanksgiving holiday, college...

The exterior of the COVID testing site.

Omicron, now in Massachusetts, has global spreader potential, expert says

December 9, 2021

Massachusetts reported its first case of the Omicron COVID-19 variant on Saturday, renewing concerns about the spread of the virus just days before the end of the fall term.  Genetic sequencing identified...

2021 Academic Townhall

Student government hosts annual town hall

December 2, 2021

Students, staff, and faculty voiced their concerns about the college’s virtual attendance policies and discussed the college’s spring reopening plans at the Student Government Association’s annual...

SGA members in a meeting.

SGA discusses CHW-ECAPS merger

December 1, 2021

The Student Government Association met with Associate Dean and Director of Counseling, Health and Wellness Brandin Dear on Nov. 5 to discuss the integration of the college’s Center for Health and Wellness...

A Spring 2020 Student Government Association meeting. Photo by Yongze Wang.

SGA backs student debt cancellation movement

December 1, 2021

The Student Government Association moved to join over 75 colleges across the country in signing a letter to President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris on Friday calling for the cancellation of...

An SGA meeting. Photo credit: Yongze Wang

SGA considers diversity, student engagement initiatives

December 1, 2021

The Student Government Association discussed a fight for mental health breaks at colleges in the Boston area at its meeting on Oct. 8. Executive Vice President Pranit Chand met with the Boston Intercollegiate...

A sign on the window of Emersons coronavirus testing site at Tufts Medical Center.

Emerson to require students to test negative before return to campus from Thanksgiving break

November 16, 2021

All students will have to provide Emerson with proof of a negative COVID-19 test prior to their return to campus from Thanksgiving break, and take another test within three days of arriving, college officials...

A polling place at City Hall on Election Day Nov. 3, 2020.

Student turnout soared in 2020 election, study finds

November 11, 2021

The 2020 presidential election saw record-high numbers of Emerson students casting their ballots at the polls or by mail, mimicking the nationwide trend of historic voter turnout, according to a recent...

The Marlboro Institute for Liberal and Interdisciplinary Studies

Emerson launches ‘cluster hire’ for intersectional studies

November 11, 2021

A new “cluster hire” initiative at Emerson aims to recruit faculty for newly-created positions in the Visual and Media Arts and Writing, Literature and Publishing departments as well as the Marlboro...

Travis Scott fans need to re-evaluate their relationship with the artist

Travis Scott fans need to re-evaluate their relationship with the artist

November 10, 2021

A year ago, or even a few weeks ago, believing people shouldn’t die at concerts wouldn’t be considered remotely controversial. But after eight people died at Astroworld in Houston on Saturday, it seems...

The Emerson Staff Union is hoping to have some of their sacrificed benefits reinstated, especially for some of the at-risk staff members.

Staff Union calls for end to hiring freeze

November 4, 2021

Members of Emerson’s staff union took to the streets this week amid contract negotiations with the college, demanding the college increase hiring in several areas that they say are already severely...

Isabella Chu recorded 11 kills in the loss to MIT on Sept. 13.

Women’s volleyball team falls to Springfield College in first playoff round

November 3, 2021

The women’s volleyball team lost 3-1 to Springfield College Tuesday night in the first round of the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference playoffs, ending its season 17-8. The Springfield...

Students sit in a computer lab.

‘Getting thrown right back in was a lot’: Students overwhelmed by return of in-person midterms

October 31, 2021

This year, students are facing the first relatively-normal, in-person midterm exam period since the outbreak of the pandemic—a jarring, even stressful change of pace for students and professors alike.  After...

Michelle Wu addresses an MBTA meeting in February 2019

Days before election, Wu tells students to get involved

October 31, 2021

City Councilor at Large Michelle Wu outlined what a Wu mayoralty would look like and urged the younger population to participate in the upcoming Nov. 2 election in a student press conference on Wednesday.  “We...

WLP Professor Benoit Denizet-Lewis.

Emerson professor receives book-writing fellowship

October 18, 2021

A Washington D.C. foundation named Benoit Denizet-Lewis, a professor in the Writing, Literature, and Publishing Department, as the recipient of an artistic grant intended to support the publication of...

The Governors Ball in 2014

Emerson students torn on live music festival

September 30, 2021

Emerson students flocked across state lines to attend this year’s Governors Ball music festival last weekend—a unique experience for students deprived of concerts for months amid the pandemic.  The...

A view of Emersons Dining Center from the Boylston Place alley.

Students dismayed at dining policy changes

September 23, 2021

After a year of specialty sandwiches and made-to-order pizzas, Emerson students are once again relying on the dining center and other on-campus locales to feed themselves—and many aren’t happy about...

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