Every University has a code, a color-scheme, an iconic trend that distinguishes its own unique illustration from that of other schools. While colors and their combinations are limited and selected through numerous high-ended faculty decisions, it’s the organizations and societies that enforce those distinctive representations that create memorable traditions and customs for both the school and its students to enjoy.
Slippery Rock’s iconic image has always been that of the Green and White. The tradition of students wearing the colors green and white to represent SRU originates from another tradition that students still take part of today: NOT wearing other school’s colors, especially colors of close school rivals such as that of Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP) or Clarion.
While the right to represent the Crimson Hawks or Golden Eagles is an open one, most students wouldn’t dare make that move as they made their way to campus for fear of torment or shame. Nonetheless, those who represent other schools remain in the minority, and the idea to wear more and more green and white became popular as the school became more established.
Student-run organizations developed and evolved as time went on and one of the most noted societies on campus rose to popularity: The Green and White Society. Through special events and programs, they represent the core for student involvement and leadership at the university. In fact, most of the traditions and customs that Slippery Rock is currently known for is due in no small part to the organization.
Over the last half-century, new ideas and innovations spawned from the minds of students and staff, creating new ways for involvement and ways to show school pride. Some of these traditions and customs that were created by the society include the tradition of wearing school colors every Friday and running events on campus that take place during the university’s common hour.
As mentioned, “Green and White Fridays” are a weekly tradition at Slippery Rock, staffed and run by The Green and White Society. As soon as you step on campus on any given Friday, students everywhere can be seen sporting their favorite green and white SRU attire. There’s no email, message or other form of proper communication to get the word around: it’s traditionally assumed that students know to wear their green and white on Fridays to represent their school pride.
Integrated marketing communication major and President of the Green and White Society Courtney McCalmont said the traditions and the school spirit at Slippery Rock are vital, especially to freshmen coming into campus.
“Our school spirit really sets us apart from other campuses,” McCalmont said. “When freshmen come here and see all the Rock Pride, they’re reminded that the campus is so friendly and so tight-knit.”
The beginning of the fall semester is the most highly-emphasized and sought-after time to exemplify the spirit of Slippery Rock. The Rock Pride are back at it on the field, clubs and organizations spread the word for recruitment and are up and running, homecoming takes place in October and positive energy and high spirits return to campus after a well-deserved rest in summertime.
While “Green and White Fridays” are a weekly tradition at SRU, the university hosts its “Friday Frenzy” event in the quad every year, recently having a magnificent turnout for new and returning students alike.
“Green and White Fridays are so important and so great because it reminds us that we are not just numbers,” McCalmont said. “We really want people to feel at home here.”
While the society typically represents and provides selections that are akin to its founding roots, the organization has recently evolved into representing attire that expands beyond the traditional green and white colors. Students are often seen sporting SRU attire even if it’s not visually green or white, showing that Rock pride is always in fashion.