Faculty-in-Residence remembers Halloween memories with daughters and dorm dwellers

Dr. Nicole McAninch, faculty-in-residence at Kokernot Hall, with her children. Photo courtesy of Dr. Nicole McAninch.

By Jessica Rajkumar | Reporter

With Halloween around the corner, people are finding that they have to adjust their spooky season traditions to remain safe from COVID-19. On Baylor’s campus, the in-residence faculty also have to do the same.

In Kokernot Hall, the McAnich family have had to change their Halloween traditions that the whole dorm hall participated in.

Dr. Nicole McAnich, Kokernot’s Faculty-in-Residence, encourages her two daughters, Catelin and Callie, to enjoy the Halloween spirit. Since living in the residence hall their ‘treat nights’ consisted of the girls dressing up in costume, running around the halls trick-or-treating, and meeting the women of Kokernot, which eventually created a community for the girls to grow up in.

Callie describes her experience as “fun because we get to meet new people and their names”.

Catelin reflected on the bond she had formed with the women in the residence halls and how close they are. She fondly recalls “we call them our sisters”

The McAnich’s treat night also brought joy to the women living in Kokernot hall during the spooky season. Vail, Colo., sophomore Valeria Favela Cano lived in Kokernot last year and got to participate in the trick-or-treating with the young girls.

“I’ll never forget the joy that the girls brought with them,” Cano said. “They were so lively and energetic, and it brought a new energy that our Halloween needed during the stressful times of midterms and exams.”

Dr. McAnich shares her joy in seeing how her daughters interact with the community around them. She continues to explain how her kids get to be a part of decorating and are engaging in the spirit of the holiday.

“A lot of kids are passive participants, they get dressed up and go get candy,” Dr. McAnich said, while her children thrive in an environment where they are encouraged to engage in the spirit of Halloween to the fullest.

While this year, the plan is to go visit family outside of Baylor to protect themselves and those around them from the virus, McAnich expresses the joy she has as her kids usually are “active participants in creating Halloween”.