Before I arrived at Connecticut College, I had never really been interested in hearing the sound of my own singing voice, perhaps because my older sisters never hesitated to tell me it was similar to a cat in heat. Even so, I decided to audition for an a cappella group last year, just for fun. I must say that I was EXTREMELY surprised when I was accepted into the amazing group that is Vox Cameli. I didn’t realize that a cappella is sort of a hot commodity on the East Coast, with groups frequently being the entertainment at Conn’s events. While I’m quite confident that only one-third of the notes I sing are ever right, that hasn’t stopped me from getting on a stage yet, and our performance for Green Dot Week was no exception.

Green Dot is a campaign that stresses the importance of consensual sex, and bystander intervention in questionable circumstances, to raise awareness about sexual assault on college campuses, and it’s an integral part of the Conn campus identity. During Green Dot Week, many athletic teams and clubs incorporate green into their color scheme and contribute to hosting a week of events all about healthy relationships and tender loving. Despite the hangups I have about subjecting people to hearing my voice (I usually just hope my notes as a bass are too low to be heard) I was stoked to be a part of the Green Dot A Cappella Concert. The event involved various groups on campus, and because Green Dot is important to the students here, there was an overwhelming turnout. Since my group went first, I was able to sit in the crowd for the rest of the concert and listen.

This event was more memorable than most because it was an opportunity to incorporate a cappella, something seemingly frivolous, into a very important awareness event. Since so much music produced now has lyrics that make we want to wash my ears out with soap and say 10 Hail Marys, it’s important to create spaces that cater to the opposite. I never pictured myself doing something like this in college, but since Conn is small and full of opportunities, everyone ends up getting involved in interesting ways. One such way is to get Green Dot training on campus. Darcie Folsom, who runs the program, teaches the basics of bystander intervention and ways of practicing it. This is something every student should do before graduating. Hopefully I’ll see you at Vox Cameli’s Spring Concert, where we’ll be consensually serenading everyone. I might even know all my notes by then.

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