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Meet Project Pumpkin Co-Chair, Carl Pieri!

Name: Carl Pieri

Hometown: Boston, MA

Age: Junior

Major: Biology

Minor: Cognitive Science

How did you become involved in Project Pumpkin?

I’ve been on NCDC (the overarching organization that puts it on) since freshman year and I was asked last Spring if I’d join the committee that plans Project Pumpkin, Senior Gala and Artsfest


Tell us a little bit more about Project Pumpkin, and what the best part about being involved in it has been.

Project Pumpkin is an amazing day where over a thousand kids who live in neighborhoods in Chicago and Evanston where it is not safe to Trick-or-Treat are bussed up here to have the best Halloween possible. The kids get to trick or treat as well as participate in activities like playing games, get their faces painted and go through a haunted house! The way I see it, Project Pumpkin is so magical because it not only brings together hundreds of students and student groups on campus (who run the booths) but also allows Northwestern to be actively engaged within the Chicago and Evanston communities. Today, when we purchased $1750 of candy at Walmart, our cashier was so excited because her son used to go to Project Pumpkin when he was a kid and even though he’s now 15 he still talks about it all the time! I’m sure there are thousands of other people with stories just like this, which just makes all the work that goes into the event entirely worth it.


Do you have any big plans for the Project in the future?

We actually significantly upped the amount of students involved in this year than have ever been involved before. Although this meant a frantic search for donations and funding from Wild Ideas we are hoping to set a precedent for Project Pumpkin to get bigger and bigger each year. Every child in Chicago deserves an amazing Halloween!


What’s your spirit animal?

I think my spirit animal would be a Loon. Growing up, I spent half my time up in Maine by a lake and I’ve always felt connected somehow to their calls at night.


What else are you involved in on campus?

On campus, I’m also involved in theater, usually as the role of set designer. I’m also a writer for Spoon and heavily involved with research in a neurobiology lab that explores sleep. I’m also a mentor for Student Research Workshops, a program that helps students get involved with research on campus!


Anything else you want to share with our readers?

I want to give a shout-out to my two Co-Chairs, Maddie McFee and Katherine Ericson, for being the two most amazing people to work with on this process!

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