Freshman Press: Introduction to Wash. U. traditions
Freshman Press takes a look at some of the biggest Wash. U. traditions, like Bauhaus, Beta Bubbles, Carnaval, Dance Marathon and Diwali.
Hosted by the architecture school, the Bauhous party takes place under a 120-foot by 160-foot tent on the Givens Hall parking lot in spirit of the Bauhaus movement of the 1920s and 1930s.
“It’s a costume party in a giant tent. Everyone comes and has a lot of fun. It’s a really good party with a DJ and a lot of people, and definitely one of the best experiences you’ll have as a Wash. U. student.”
– Junior Aric Skurdal
A party hosted by Beta Theta Pi where students dance in the bubble-filled basement of the Beta Theta Pi House.
“Last year there were about 850 people, so it’s a very popular event. Everyone looks forward to it and enjoys it a lot—that’s why we continue to do it. It’s a very different atmosphere from any other party and very unique.”
– Junior Tristan Sopp, Beta Theta Pi recruitment chair
A Latin festival with dances from Latin America and Spain in recognition of experiences and challenges faced by Latinos.
“There’s a small Latino presence on campus. It’s great to see our culture magnified on campus. We’re really proud of the turnout that we have every year. It’s always a great show with vibrant colors and slamming tunes. We hope all the freshmen come out to see it this year!”
– Senior Vicky Rodriguez
After fundraising throughout the fall, students gather for a 12-hour dance-a-thon with music, performances, competitions and games to raise money for the St. Louis Children’s Hospital and Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center.
“It’s one of the greatest events, because you get to meet the Miracle kids and their families. You hear their stories and it’s really inspiring, because so many people work together for a great cause. My favorite part is after the 12 hours [of dancing] when they reveal the numbers—it’s a great feeling to see how much money you’ve raised.”
– Senior Jenny Sha
A cultural show put on by the South Asian Student Association with skits, dances, and songs.
“The cultural experience is really cool. You learn a lot of stuff you didn’t know about. It’s cool getting to know different people. It’s a different experience every year.”
– Junior Shobhit Vishnoi
First 40 Days
An exciting series of events designed especially for freshmen. Events include the SUp all Night, which is hosted by Student Union in the D.U.C., where students can grab a snack, dance salsa, watch a movie, play bingo, rock to guitar hero and meet new friends; the Symphony on the South 40, a concert put on by the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra with special outdoor dining; and the Taste of Wash. U., a non-profit event where students pay $2 for an appetizer and $3 for an entrée from any of 20-25 featured restaurants.
“I love the first few weeks of school when everyone gets back. People haven’t seen each other in a while; schoolwork is light. It’s a great time.”
– Senior Jared Berkowitz
Give Thanks Give Back
Students donate gifts to needy families in support of the group “100 Need-iest Cases,” which battles poverty during the holiday season.
“It’s a very hands-on activity. You feel like you’re actually helping out. You get to wrap presents. It brings the community together. They put on holiday songs and it’s open to anyone.”
– Junior Tina Wang
A huge mud fight on the South 40 swamp put on by the South Asian Student Association.
“Pretty awesome experience at Wash. U. Most campuses don’t have the experience to throw tens of thousands of water balloons at each other.”
– Junior Matt Vail
A free breakfast buffet that used to be offered in Center Court [now the new South 40 House] during the start of every reading week from 10 p.m. to midnight.
“It’s an awesome brunch, because it’s free and brunch is my favorite meal. Also, teachers and administrators help serve. It’s fun to watch them make pancakes. But get there early, because the line is long!”
– Senior Micah Anderson
A spirited fan group for Wash. U. athletics that is open to all students. Members are eligible to attend exclusive events, compete for prizes and receive T-shirts, pizza, headbands and other free stuff.
“Red Alert helps to create a great atmosphere to play under. There’re fans cheering under you. That’s a big push for you to win. I think any sport can say that Red Alert is vital to create a competitive environment.”
– Senior Janice Evans, women’s basketball team captain
Rush occurs in January during the week before classes begin. Interested students meet with sororities and fraternities for a formal recruitment process.
The oldest student-run carnival in the United States, with rides, games and musical productions in themed façades. Greek organizations compete for the Burmeister Cup for best carnival participation.
An all-school party with LED lights hosted by the Engineering Student Council featuring a large-scale, light-up, computer-controlled dance floor.
“Vertigo is a unique event because it’s rare that you can find a place to listen to house music and get the feeling of being at a club with your friends while still being safe on campus. Lopata Gallery is also a great location for the event.”
– Senior Vicky Rodriguez
W.I.L.D [Walk In Lay Down]
A huge concert held every semester by Team 31 on the Brookings Quad featuring famous local bands, recording artists and musical groups.
“My favorite was when the Ben Folds came. It’s a lot of fun, because you’re with all your friends. It was probably one of my best memories. It was pouring rain and everyone was just sliding around. I always look forward to the day when they announce the bands that are coming. They try to keep it as much of a secret as possible. There’s a lot of anticipation.”
– Senior Clint Morgan