Full Circle

For Alex ’95, P’25 and Chris Noon ’95, P’25, there was nothing like seeing their daughter, Lauren ’25 follow their footsteps through the PULSE program at BC

Alex, Fr. Jim Weiss, Lauren, and Chris caught up at the Heights over Family Weekend.

When Chris Noon met the woman he’d marry, Alexandra, on the 51 bus to the first day at their PULSE placement in Roslindale, he wasn’t much in the mood for chatting. Picture him: clunky 90s headphones clamped to his ears, hood pulled over his head as he leaned against the bus window, savoring a reprieve from the chatter of his seven roommates. 

That is, before Alex pulled his headphones off and told Chris he was being rude. Or, as Alex remembers it, “I said ‘we’re going to be riding this bus together every Thursday all year, you can’t just go silent like that.’”

Chris took the hint, and over the course of the year they became close friends while mentoring disadvantaged youth. Both drawn to the PULSE service learning program by the way it connected their philosophy and theology lessons to the gritty realities of poverty and social injustice, Alex and Chris were profoundly affected by their experience. “It really brought to life what we studied in the classroom,” says Chris, who continued mentoring his “little brother” and kept in touch with his PULSE professor, Father Jim Weiss, for the rest of his time at Boston College.

Students either come into the course as generous people, or they become generous by taking PULSE.

—Fr. Jim Weiss, PULSE professor for 30+ years.

After graduating, Alex and Chris moved to Alex’s hometown of Chicago and married in their mid-20’s, deciding soon after to start a real estate construction business informed by many of their experiences in PULSE. With a deep emphasis on community involvement and local philanthropy, they’ve volunteered at and fundraised for community organizations such as much-needed after school programs, women’s crisis centers, and more. Giving back, serving those in need, and contributing to something greater than oneself became central to how Alex and Chris operate their business, live in the community, and raise their three children. 

When their daughter Lauren ’25 enrolled at BC, her parents’ countless PULSE stories were top of mind. Lauren ended up in Fr. Jim’s PULSE section, and the rest is history. “She had a fantastic service experience and really loved learning from Fr. Jim the same way I did,” Chris says. 

It’s deeply edifying for Fr. Jim to witness the intergenerational nature of the program, and its tendency to generate long-term relationships with students. “But the great reward of teaching PULSE is seeing the impact it makes on students,” he says. “I don’t just know it—I see it.”

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