This article was the result of my having the strange privilege of being one of the last students on the Ripon College campus before it was shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A handful of other students and I, most of us were from out of state or overseas, had decided to stay on campus for spring break. It was during that stay that I decided to interview the school’s new Director of Multicultural Affairs, who had set up a food bank for the students.
I spoke to Maria Mendoza-Bautista on a Tuesday and learned on Wednesday that students would not be returning to campus after the break. It was the last in person interview I got to conduct as part of the College Days.
Acting simultaneously as news-piece on the food bank and as a profile of Mendoza-Bautista herself, I feel that this article is among my strongest human interest writing.