Sian McLaughlin is a first year student and is a Lockerbie Scholar from Lockerbie, Scotland.
Each year two students from Lockerbie, Scotland are selected to study in Syracuse for a year and represent the Lockerbie 11, and SU’s commitment to Remembrance.
On campus for only a few months so far, Sian is already involved with Ottothon, First Year Players, and the Shanti Yoga Club. In class, she’s studying scuba diving, figure sculpture, fiction writing, human sexuality and Latin.
Morning SU! My name is Sian McLaughlin and I’m a Lockerbie Scholar from Scotland. I’m here with a fellow scholar to study for one freshman year, to experience SU and work with the 35 Remembrance Scholars here. I’m here in honor of the victims of the Pan Am 103 flight which was bombed over my hometown, Lockerbie, on the Christmas of 1988. The plane carried 259 passengers, 35 of which were Syracuse students travelling back from a semester abroad. The plane fell upon my town, and we lost 11 of our residents. This scholarship is a meaningful and once in a lifetime opportunity for me, so I’m really excited to share my experience of our Remembrance Week and my other participation on campus. Check out @OurSyracuseU this week to learn more about why I’m here and what I do here! Meanwhile, here’s a picture of myself and Shona Beattie the day we were selected for the scholarships.
What is your favorite thing/part about SU?
My favorite thing about SU is the spirit – whether I’m meeting new people, spending time with friends, or going to a game, the Syracuse spirit is so evident and uniting for students. I find this heartwarming as an international student, and feel it makes meeting new people all the more easy and exciting.
If you could tell a new or incoming student just ONE thing about SU, what it would be?
Never let there be an awkward silence – fill it, speak to people you don’t know and be outgoing. You never know who you’ll meet or who they’ll become to you. Also, first impressions are almost always wrong.
What is your favorite class to date?
I find it hard to choose, but I particularly love my Fiction Class because it’s a workshop, so it’s about working as a team to help one another build on a personal hobby. I also love Scuba because it’s challenging but rewarding.
What does it mean to you to be a Lockerbie Scholar and to be here in Syracuse?
It is still hard to fully comprehend that I have been selected to study in a place which once lost 35 of its students to the same tragedy that cost my hometown 11 residents – and much more. The communities of Lockerbie and Syracuse united in pain, and from this have become stronger than they were before; to be a part of this is really special to me and an opportunity for me to not only experience this community with which my hometown has bonded with all my life, but to help bring justice to the victims of the disaster and learn of who we lost that night. Working with the Remembrance Scholars to express the passion we share for looking back on the victims’ lives and acting forward in their memory, is really heartwarming. I am so lucky to be welcomed by SU from all the way across the Atlantic, and to witness how much the community here cares for my hometown. Being among now 52 young people from Lockerbie who have become part of both communities really shows, despite the horrendous acts of terrorism, the ability people have to grow stronger when united.
Yesterday marked the first day of SU’s Remembrance Week 2016! As part of this, you may have noticed this display of seats on the quad which represent the seats on flight Pan Am 103 which belonged to the 35 Syracuse students. By the end of this week we will be releasing dove balloons in honor of each of the students lost. This semester, Lockerbie and Remembrance Scholars have been meeting weekly to organise and produce Remembrance Week as well as surrounding projects. The events run everyday for this week and can be found at http://remembrance.syr.edu/event/
“Best view at SU”: Here’s one of last week’s sunsets across Syracuse from one of my favorite spots on campus – Lawrinson Penthouse. Lawrinson is one of the largest residences on campus with around 600 students. It was the second tallest building in Syracuse when it was built, and the largest reinforced concrete structure in NY state 🌞
A throwback to a few weeks ago when Shona and I decided to try out SU’s Tennity Ice Pavilion at the Bollywood themed night – even though Lockerbie is a very small town, it has an ice rink which both served a big part in our childhoods. SU’s Ice Pavilion did not disappoint in rekindling our love for ice skating ⛸ if you’re looking for a cheap (or often free) night on the ice, check out the events coming up. Their Skate til’ Midnight sessions are free admission and half price skate hire, running every Friday and Saturday night of the semester.
Being among now 52 young people from Lockerbie who have studied in at SU over the past 26 years is a massive privilege – becoming part of both communities really shows, despite the horrendous acts of terrorism, the ability people have to grow stronger when united. Andrew McClune, a Lockerbie scholar in 2002, had the same privilege and shared the same passion for Remembrance as Shona and I do. Andrew’s life was cut short during his time here, and so in memory of the outgoing and positive person he was, we continue not only to remember the 11 lives lost in Lockerbie, but the fellow Lockerbie scholar who was also dedicated to remembering them and was taken from us too early. Join us at the Rose Laying Ceremony tomorrow at 2.03pm (the time of the disaster, US time), where we will remember each of the victims for who they were, as well as Andrew McClune. #SURemembrance2016
On Sunday we started Remembrance Week with a Candlelight Vigil. Today we have our Rose Laying Ceremony – stop by here at the Place of Remembrance at 2.03pm to hear about the lives of the students SU lost in the Pan Am 103 flight, and to hear a bit from Shona and I about the impacts in Lockerbie and who we lost. We will be laying roses in memory of the victims🌹#SURemembrance2016
Today was the most meaningful day of our Lockerbie Scholarship so far. Thank you to everyone who attended Rose Laying or the Convocation, may we look back on the lives we lost 28 years ago, act forward in their memory and in the face of terrorism. Well done to this year’s amazing Remembrance scholars 💛 #SURemembrance2016
A shot from last night’s opening reception of “The Apperceived Mass” art exhibition in Smith Hall. My figure sculpture professor Aysha Hamouda worked in collaboration with Jonathan Aprea and Antone Dolezal for this exhibition, all graduate students at SU – this picture shows how they used string and photography with ultraviolet light 💡
Just as my week on OurSyracuseU has come to an end, Remembrance Week 2016 has finished and left me with this little family of amazing people. To be a Remembrance Scholar is the highest honor an undergraduate student can receive, and to the Lockerbie Scholars like Shona and I they are lifelong friends in the most unique way. I’ve really enjoyed showing a bit about what I do and what Remembrance Week is. I hope you enjoyed my week on here – thank you & I look forward to seeing Shona start her takeover tomorrow 📷 – SM #SyracuseU