A lot has changed since our university’s founding, of course, but the stuff that hasn’t changed too much is what we call tradition, which is virtually unstoppable.
No. 93: Greek week
Chariots. Togas. Ruled by Godz. Put on by the Interfraternity Council and Panhellenic Council, Greek Week features carnivals and idi-odysseys.
No. 94: Bottles on chancellor’s fence
If you pass by the Chancellor’s Residence early enough during Homecoming or St. Pat’s, you might see a collection of empty bottles decorating the fence. Occasionally, revelers will ring the doorbell and leave a full bottle for the privilege of placing the empties upside down.
No. 95: Outhouse burning
The fire pit on State Street behind the Chancellor’s Residence is the site of this Homecoming tradition put on by a local fraternity. Fortunately, no one is using the facilities during the festivities.
No. 96: “Look to your left”
As the saying goes, years ago freshmen were told on the first day of classes, “Look to your left. Look to your right. One of the three of you won’t make it.” Today, we still encourage students to take a look at their neighbors, but we tell them they’re looking at a future successful graduate.
No. 97: Beer garden
Pour me a cold one. Preferably green.
No. 98: Homecoming
Every campus has one. Ours rocks.
No. 99: Sig Ep rock
A Sigma Phi Epsilon alumnus wrote that “someone would steal the Sig Ep rock every year and drop it off at another fraternity’s yard. It would get passed around to several houses until finally there weren’t enough people to move it anymore. The best thing was, it was so heavy it had to be dragged behind a truck and would leave a nice mark on the road.”
No. 100: Christmas Tree Joust
“I loved it when the TKEs would wander (stumble?) over to our house (PiKA) in December for their annual Christmas Tree Joust,” says Will Kirby, ArchE’08, CE’08. “Yep, just a bunch of guys holding Christmas trees and running at one another. Always a friendly and ridiculous college spectacle.”
No. 101: Legacies
“I love how the name is changed every now and then to give each generation a new identity,” says Jim “Clesie” Moore, ME’65. “My dad went to MSM, I went to UMR and my daughter and son are at S&T.”
No. 102: Ponding
Certain fraternities have been known to celebrate major events like giving their girlfriends lavaliers and getting engaged by ceremoniously dumping the betrothed in Schuman Pond. Ew.
No. 103: Stepping
Stepping or step-dancing is a tradition among African American fraternities and sororities. Popularized by movies like Spike Lee’s School Daze and more recently, Sylvain White’s Stomp the Yard, the practice originated in the mid-20th century, according to Ron Lytle, a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity at Missouri S&T. Lytle and his fellow Alphas perform step shows at various events.