By Angeline Dominguez
Students gathered around as student, Delion Diaz announced the sealing of John Jay’s first time capsule, at the Jay Walk.
Diaz couldn’t help but look at his closet and notice the massive amount of club souvenirs he kept to remind him of being a part of all these organizations and decided to give more placement value to his prized possessions rather than storing them away in a box, so he thought “ why not put them in a time capsule?”
Diaz is a current senior who hopes to graduate with a bachelors degree in International Criminal Justice, is part of John Jay’s Spirit Team committee, board of directors for the Children Center, President of International Criminal Justice (ICJ) Club, was homecoming king and also part of the United Nations Student Association.
He proposed the idea to Danielle Officer, director of the Center for Student Involvement and Leadership (CSIL) where she excitedly agreed to Diaz’s idea.
“This was all him, this was all his idea,” said Officer and added, “the time capsule is a nice way for all the student organizations that were able to contribute to put a memento into the time capsule to represent their time here, being [part of] a student organization.”
Initially, Diaz planned for the capsule to be buried in the Jay walk but he explains “facilities liked the idea but strongly disagreed with putting it [capsule] there [on the grass area] and suggested that we put it somewhere on the Jay Walk where it could be inconspicuously displayed where everyone could see it.”
The capsule is located on the Jay Walk by the entrance of Haaren Hall, and has a walk way filled with stones leading to the capsule, surrounded by a sitting area for students to hang around in.
According to Youth Justice President, Hernan Carvente,“It doesn’t matter whether it’s [the capsule] is above ground or underground.”
Carvente having been incarcerated before, is happy and thanks Diaz for having put together the idea and also thanks his club friends for having “impacted him in a way that [they] could only imagine.”
Diaz proposed that the students return to open the capsule in ten years but Officer, jokingly replied, “You want to do this when nobody is here?”
Both Diaz and Officer agreed to reopen the capsule in five years.
“Our hope is that they’ll [students] come back several years from now as a part of maybe the reunion, to just kind of get together because it’s a common bond that all of these students share, they were all part of a student organization and that’s something that ties them together as a part of the college community,” said Officer.
Diaz emailed student organizations back in February asking that they participate and give in an item to be stored in the capsule. He feared with the low response from clubs, his idea would soon fail.
To his surprise, after gathering several students around for his speech, he thanked the 43 clubs that were able to contribute an item. He followed with an explanation of the capsule’s purpose and ended with an encouragement for the participating students to come back in the assumed five years to reopen the capsule and reunite with their fellow club members once again.
Secretary for the Habitat for Humanity Club, Marta Orellana, said, “I’m excited to come back in five years, I never thought about doing a time capsule for anything so looking back at things sometimes I don’t remember where I got the item from or what it meant to me at the time and I know that Habitat to me really means a lot, just being a part of the club and the stuff that we do. So looking back at what we are going to put in there will help bring that all those memories back.”
At officially 5:41pm on May 5,2015 the sealing of the capsule was officially begun. Students began picking up the stones from the walkway and hurriedly wrote their club names and placed the stones to lay on top of the last item that Diaz hoped to fit into the capsule, a gift for Officer. Finally Diaz placed the lid on the capsule and screwed it closed temporarily until the next day May 6, 2015 where the capsule will be completed sealed with silicone to then be reopened five years from then.
Connie Danny, Secretary of The Dreamers Club said, “I feel really happy to know that clubs participated in this because whenever they open they open this time capsule again it would be a really good experience for us to see what was there and what we did before.” Danny was then spotted tearing as the capsule was being closed.
A plaque including the date of the capsules closure followed by a quote is to be added during the summer and is currently pending approval by Officer.