Campus News News

Public Safety holds second annual ‘Stuff a Cruiser’ event

Braedan Shea

It appeared to be just another chilly, late-Autumn day on the campus of Springfield College. Students were making their way to early afternoon classes, and a light breeze was shaking loose the auburn-colored leaves – reminiscent of classic Springfield maroon – off the trees in the heart of campus. The whole scene displayed and captivated a perfect sense of comfortability and quietness.

But located just outside of the Campus Union main entrance, a Public Safety patrol vehicle was parked on the sidewalk with its blue-and-white lights blazing – screaming for attention. While the connotations of this may be assumed to be something bad happening, in fact, it was quite the opposite.

Because for the second year in a row, the Graduate Student Organization (GSO) has teamed up with the Department of Public Safety to host the “Stuff a Cruiser” event.

The event, held previously on Nov. 17 and more recently on Nov. 29, is open to all Springfield College students, faculty and staff, in which they are given the opportunity to bring in a toy. The toy gets placed in a patrol vehicle, and is then brought to the Shriners Children’s New England Hospital.

Students should also know that if they bring a toy with them to donate this week, their name is automatically entered into a raffle for a “Park Anywhere” pass. This parking pass grants access to park in any lot on campus until the end of the Spring 2023 semester. This excludes person-specific spots, parking for people with disabilities, or specially-reserved areas, but is an enticing incentive. For seniors, they have the chance to win a campus bookstore gift card.

Shriners Children’s New England, located in Springfield, Mass., sets out to provide specialized pediatric orthopedic, urology, rheumatology and cleft lip and palate care using the latest innovations in diagnosis and treatment. Their list of services include inpatient rehabilitation, fracture care and sports health and medicine.

The facility is designed exclusively for children, and by offering a full range of inpatient and outpatient services under one roof, children have the chance to receive care and treatment in one building, usually on the same day. Some of the onsite services at the hospital include outpatient visits, inpatient and outpatient surgery, orthotics and prosthetics, occupational therapy, physical therapy, child life, care coordination, family services and nutrition.

The goal of the event is to bring toys and joy to these children, who will be unable to be at home for the upcoming holiday season.

The Stuff a Cruiser idea on Alden Street started last year, when former officer Richard Spaulding proposed it. It was something that he had done in the past elsewhere, and wanted to continue the tradition here.

But with Spaulding gone, a pair of Public Safety sisters have stepped up to hopefully turn this into an annual event.

“We had such a good turnout last year, we decided to have it again this year,” officer Shannon Trybus said. “Because [Spaulding] is gone, I messaged GSO, and tried to get everyone involved.”

Trybus and her sister Bethany deeply care about the impact they can be having on the children at the hospital.

“I think that’s great,” Shannon said. “These are for kids that are stuck in a hospital and can’t really do anything. Giving them gifts is one of the best things you could give them around Christmas time.”

For those who are interested in donating, the window has not passed yet. GSO and DPS plan to host one more Stuff a Cruiser event this Friday, Dec. 2, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. outside of the Campus Union.

Photo by Braedan Shea/The Student

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