By Megan Tompkins | Contributor
Receiving a line jersey in Independence is just the beginning of many traditions that the upcoming class of 2022 has to look forward to. From attending the first Dr Pepper Hour to seeing Christmas on Fifth Street, there are plenty of Baylor traditions to go around.
The Woodlands junior Maddie Ream said her experience during Baylor’s Welcome Week was slightly overwhelming, but very exciting.
“The leaders were amazing and made Baylor less intimidating,” Ream said.
Once Welcome Week is over and classes begin, students have the opportunity to see and join organizations. The Mosaic Mixer, an event hosted by the the Department of Cultural Affairs, will take place Wednesday at the Bill Daniel Student Center (SUB), with representatives from multicultural student organizations.
Late Night, another event hosted by student organizations, is from 9 p.m. to midnight on Friday at five locations — The McLane Student Life Center (SLC), Russell Gymnasium, The Bobo Spiritual Life Center, Moody Library and the SUB. There will be live music, games, exhibitions, free food, prizes and more. These events are open to all students and intended to give students a chance to find their niche on campus.
As August rolls to an end, the new freshman class will finally get to become a part of the Baylor Line. The first football game is Sept. 1 against Abilene Christian University. Though Ream said the Baylor Line can be mass chaos, it was her favorite part of freshman year.
Houston freshman Katelyn Garcia said the class of 2022 is definitely anticipating their participation in the line.
“I feel like the Baylor Line is a very special tradition and that it will really bond us as a class,” Garcia said.
The oldest lasting tradition of Baylor is Homecoming. Beginning in 1901, the event is recognized as the first collegiate homecoming in the nation. The homecoming activities will begin Nov. 1 and continue through Nov. 3. Some of the main events include alumni reunions, the freshman mass meeting, the bonfire, the football game and, perhaps the most recognized, the Homecoming Parade.
Austin freshman Megan Wright said she is excited to meet new people who could become lifelong friends.
One of the final traditions of the fall semester is Christmas on Fifth Street. The event is from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Nov. 29. There will be various activities at different locations, including Fountain Mall, Burleson Quadrangle, Traditions Plaza and the SUB. Some activities include the lighting of the Christmas tree in Burleson Quadrangle, carols, a live nativity scene, live music, carriage rides and pictures with Santa. This event helps bring the fall semester to a close.
Even with all of the official Baylor traditions, there are a couple that aren’t necessarily Baylor sanctioned. Fountain hopping is not exactly supported by Baylor, but many students participate in this activity. Fountain hopping is running through the many fountains on campus, typically in the middle of the night … Many students have participated in this activity, and even some parents have gotten invited to fountain hop.
Another student-led “tradition” is Tortilla Tossing. Tortilla tossing is an activity where students or Wacoans take a bag of tortillas to the Waco Suspension Bridge and try to toss the tortillas onto a concrete pillar in the middle of the water. There are a couple of tall tales to tortilla tossing, such as that if a student lands a tortilla on the pillar, he or she will graduate in four years. Another tale is that however many tortillas it takes to land on the pillar will tell how many people a person will date before they meet his or her soulmate. Freshman can choose for themselves which of these tales they choose to believe.
The class of 2022 has a lot to look forward to. However, with all the traditions and festivities students can become overwhelmed. Ream’s biggest advice for incoming freshman is to study.
“Freshmen should be really passionate and care about grades. Since there is so much you can do freshman year, you forget to study,” Ream said.
She also advises those nervous about participating in traditions to at least do them all once. She said all of the traditions and events can make Baylor less intimidating, and trying them once will allow a student find what he or she likes.
Class of 2022, Welcome to Baylor.