Most of us don’t really understand the importance of Homecoming Week. To many students, Homecoming is a week of extra events added in preparation for another football game. The fraternities build their floats, several more parties are planned than usual and the alumni arrive on campus, looking misty-eyed while they revere the times they’ve had. For others, the immortal custom of not being sober is celebrated among the masses, as both undergrads and alumni alike can be found throwing up together in harmony from Kiester Road to Grove City–truly a spectacle to behold, which says something about the intrinsic meaning of searching for our roots. But what is Homecoming to us? What does this event truly mean?
The intention of Homecoming Week is to remind everyone about the fervid sense of Rock Pride, and how our name is more than just a story about settlers slipping on some rocks in the river (you all know how the story goes). In practice, Homecoming is just that; a chance for students new and old to celebrate what it means to be a part of Slippery Rock University. This week offers a chance for students to don their green and white to honor all that Slippery Rock has to offer. Revel in the fact that it’s a tiny college town with nothing to do. Express your love for the rolling farm land and wide open spaces. Despite the overworked title of a “Rock Solid Education” proclaimed on every orientation tour, be proud that the foundation of your future career is starting here.
Homecoming also offers the opportunity to get to know the students who were here before them. Students should make sure to interact with alumni during Homecoming whenever possible. Several Slippery Rock University alumni are successful and important professionals in their respective fields. Learning from those who came before is always a wise move, yet students should not go overboard. Alumni are here to have a nice weekend, not find students a job in their company. Still, you never know when you might get lucky.
Homecoming is an occasion that only comes once a year. The school spirit and pride current and former students share for SRU is the essence of what Homecoming is about. Keeping that in mind while participating in the upcoming festivities is an easy way to ensure everyone has the wonderful Homecoming experience they desire. Give Rocky a high-five at the game. Grab yourself a free T-shirt from the events happening in the Quad. Maybe read up on those Top of The Rock emails to gain some insight to the history of Slippery Rock University (that’s what they’re there for!) Above all, as the iconic Beach Boys’ tune suggests, celebrate the fact that you go to Slippery Rock and cherish the memories you’ve made here. For many of us, we only have a few years of this left before we come back as alumni.