Torch:U.S. Volume LXIV Summer 2015 - Page 3



VOICES · Torch:U.S. · Summer, 2015

Countdown 'Til Convention

Howdy, JCLers! I’m extremely pleased to report that we have just had one of the most successful National Classics Week campaigns in NJCL history. The hashtags #WhyClassics and #NCW were basically trending in the JCL Facebook community; First VP Maya’s National Classics Week Packet, complete with fabulous graphics, was a huge hit; and Editor Amol’s digital Spring Torch issue released that week, which featured podcasts, time-lapse videos of convention, and on-the-street interview clips, got everyone more pumped about the presence of the classics. Also, the NJCL Board’s lip-synced, National Classics Week-themed rendition of “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift reached hundreds and hundreds of views. If it isn’t too bold of me to say so, this year’s National Classics Week was certainly a week to remember for the national officers, for the JCL, and for the classics community in general.

As the inevitable mental countdown until convention begins ticking away in our heads, we often wonder, “How in the world will I be able to wait until convention at the end of July?” Well, fear not, fellow JCLers, for the period between state conventions and national convention is an excellent time to continue fostering one’s love for the JCL. Gather with your chapter over the summer to brainstorm and create spirit gear for nationals; pour your heart into making the last touches on a Latin Oratory or an art entry; and keep spreading the word about the JCL to schools who don’t have chapters yet—there are officers on the Board that can help you with each of these. And if you’re interested in running for National Office, it’s not too late; just contact Parliamentarian Ashley Blazek. Always remember to follow the wise words of Vergil to have courage to pursue whatever goal you have in mind.

When convention finally arrives, I encourage you to continue to use Vergil’s galvanizing words to step out of your shell and try things you wouldn’t normally do. Introduce yourself to a few people from other states, perhaps; you may just become lifelong friends. Compete in a contest you’ve never tried—you may end up placing. Attend a Ludi, dance, or social event you normally wouldn’t go to—it may become your favorite convention memory. Do not let anything inhibit you; rather, advance boldly against these inhibitions and toward your aspirations.

I hope you all have a wonderful end to the school year and a fantastic summer while we countdown the days until convention!

Ex imo pectore,

Ruiqi He

2014-2015 NJCL President

NCW Success!

Waking up to Rome's birthday being a trending topic on my Facebook feed is probably one of the moments I will cherish most from my time in the JCL. My deepest gratitude to you all for making this the most successful National Classics Week ever! It was incredible seeing your posts and images all over social media sites. Thank you for your commitment to this organization and the classical civilizations it represents.

Enough about what I thought, though. I'd like to know how you felt about NCW this year. Was there something you wish was done differently? Please send me an email at with your feedback. If you had an especially wonderful celebration or event, please send me images! I'd love to see how you made NCW special!

As we near convention, please remember to make your submissions to the promotional video contest and membership contest! Email or message me if you have any questions. I look forward to reviewing your entries!

Ex imo corde,

Maya Nandakumar

2014-2015 NJCL 1st Vice President

Spirit Preparations Underway

Thank you so much for an extremely successful and productive National Classics Week. We couldn’t have done it without your support, and your use of the hashtag #whyclassics truly spread JCL spirit. It was a pleasure to see your varied service projects throughout social media -- truly, no other organization displays so much love for a subject and a community as ours. I hope you enjoyed our “Shake It Off” lip-sync surprise!

Let’s keep this dedication to service and spirit going! Throughout the summer, I want you all to continue planning service projects and other activities, and to start planning for nationals! I’m so excited to begin the real work on planning the NJCL Service Projects as well as spirit prizes – and I hope to see you all as spirited as ever when July arrives! Now is a fantastic time to start working on spirit ideas, themes for your state, and t-shirt designs. Stay tuned for announcements regarding the Service awards and other prizes that will be awarded at Convention!

It has been a pleasure to work for you, JCL. I am so proud of the many projects and events we’ve accomplished. I cannot wait to see you at Nationals! As always, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at