Editorial: Combining old traditions and new memories
October is a special time of year at Pacific. Not only do the leaves change color to make the campus even more beautiful, but the university welcomes alumni, family and friends for Homecoming weekend. Last year was the re-blossoming of a once-annual tradition: Homecoming, the combination of Parents and Family Weekend and Alumni Weekend. Homecoming was a tradition at Pacific until 1995 but Pacific brought the festivities back last year.
Now we celebrate our second annual Homecoming, and there are several special new additions this year. For example, Lip Sync and Midnight Mania will be combined for a new event titled Tiger Rally: United We Roar.
In addition, the Associated Students of University of the Pacific initiated a Homecoming Court. ASuop will select 12 individuals to serve on the 2014-2015 Homecoming Court. Those individuals will represent academic excellence, Pacific pride and community involvement, reports the university’s website. The Royal Court will be composed of one freshman couple, one sophomore couple, one junior couple and three senior couples, and graduate students can apply, so every student has a chance to be recognized for his or her hard work at Pacific. One male and one female will be selected from the three senior couples to serve as Homecoming King and Queen. The winners will be announced at the Tiger Rally on Oct. 17.
The Royal Court will ride in the Homecoming Parade on Oct. 18 at 1 p.m. on the Miracle Mile. Many organizations on campus designed their own floats for the parade. As more people show up, the parade will become even more exciting, so encourage your friends and family to attend this free tradition.
While new traditions are being established, old traditions are still being honored. Many organizations and graduating classes will be celebrating reunions on campus with their own unique Homecoming events. The Class of 1974 will be celebrating their 40th reunion. The Class of 1984 has a 30th reunion. The Class of 1989 will celebrate their 25th year. Lastly, the Class of 2004 will have a 10th-year reunion. With stark contrasts between the price of gas, tuition, etc. over the years, readers can get a sense of how much the world has changed since then.
Besides class reunions, a handful of organizations will be commemorating anniversaries as well. The Benerd School of Education celebrates 90 years. Student Advisors will be having a 40-year anniversary. Delta Sigma Zeta Sorority Inc. will observe their 40th anniversary. Delta Sigma Pi commemorates 30 years. Pacific Ambassadors celebrate a 10-year anniversary. Sigma Alpha Epsilon, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship and Black Student Union will host reunion parties as well.
Reunions are a wonderful incentive for alumni to come back to visit the University. While alumni are here, students should take advantage of the opportunity to pick their brains. They’ve been here and done that, so past graduates can offer perspective and wisdom beyond what your peers might have to offer.
It may be difficult to socialize with alumni amidst the LipSync performances during the Tiger Rally and other school spirit-inducing events, so students should plan to attend other kinds of events too. Rub elbows with alumni at Taste of Pacific on Saturday, Oct. 18 at 4:30 p.m. on the lawn of the Alex and Jeri Vereschagin Alumni House, with $50 admission, or at the Fellowship Continental Breakfast following service on Sunday, Oct. 19 at 10 a.m. in the Grace Covell Banquet Hall for $15.
As old traditions are bridged with new ones, old Homecoming memories will likewise be supplemented by the new. Invite as many friends and families as you can to each event, especially to ones that channel your school spirit.
Advertise your Tiger pride by stocking up on Pacific gear found in the University Bookstore; according to the Pacific Alumni Association, alumni receive 10 percent off all clothing and gift merchandise purchases by presenting their alumni card. Alumni also receive $2 off single admission tickets to athletic events.
Founded on July 10, 1851, Pacific was California’s first chartered university. There are now over 80 undergraduate majors, 15 NCAA Division I athletic programs and more than 140 clubs and organizations on the brick and ivy campus, which spans 175 acres, according to the University’s website.
The University has changed drastically since its inception as a Methodist university in San Jose, Calif., such as Pacific’s commitment to achieving a more diverse and inclusive student body. According to a press release by the University, among this year’s entering freshmen, 40 percent are Asian American, 16 percent are Hispanic, 9 percent come from outside the United States and 3 percent are African American.
According to Pacific President Pamela A. Eibeck in a press release, “They have chosen an institution with a rich history and an exciting future, where our faculty’s first commitment is to teaching. Pacific students leave the university with a superior education, prepared for successful careers and leadership in their communities.”
The University revealed some of those successful careers include jazz musician Dave Brubeck ‘42, former San Francisco mayor George Moscone ‘53, NFL Coach Pete Carroll ‘73, ‘76, human rights activist Sakena Yacoobi ‘77, musician Chris Isaak ‘80 and NASA astronaut and engineer Jose Hernandez ‘85.
While alumni return to campus to reminisce for old time’s sake, current students have the chance to forge new memories they can later reflect on as alumni. If you ever felt like you didn’t participate in enough events on campus, Homecoming is your chance to rectify that.
Homecoming doesn’t come around again until next October, and some events will not be offered next year, so try to attend as many events as you can to maximize your Homecoming experience. Don your Pacific shirt, grab your family and friends and make this a Homecoming you’ll never forget.
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