Traditions. What are traditions and why do they have such an impact on choosing a university or students’ experiences at the university they may have chosen?
It’s absurd to choose a university based on its traditions alone or to even choose a university because of its “celebrity.”
Although Texas Wesleyan is a fairly small private school, the greek organizations, the robing ceremony at graduation, family weekend and freshmen Ram Camp are traditions Wesleyan has had for years. They do not “make” the university, or give it credibility. All of these traditions are unique to Wesleyan and elements that some big public universities don’t even have or publicize.
Big public universities, like the University of Texas at Austin, Texas A&M University, Te
xas Tech and many other universities tend to forget the value of traditions when sports and “celebrity”come into the equation.
According to the Merriam-Webster’s dictionary, there are two major definitions for traditions.
The first definition states that a tradition is an inherited, established or customary pattern of thought, action or behavior (as a religious practice or a social custom).
The second definition states that a tradition is a belief or story, or a body of beliefs or stories relating to the past, that are commonly accepted as historical though not verifiable.
Where the confusion lies, is that most people don’t know what a tradition really is. Whether a tradition is big such as Texas Wesleyan’s Welcome Weekend and Midnight Madness, or a simple, small tradition like the robing ceremony, traditions exist at Wesleyan.
Typically people define traditions under definition two, which leaves it wide open for basically anything someone believes to be a tradition.
I personally believe in definition one, which states traditions have to be established in history in order to be considered a valuable tradition; not just something someone came up with out of the blue that coincidentally became a tradition.
Texas Wesleyan h
as always been a small private school but its spirit is greater than any other university I know. Big colleges are known for their big football games and its roaring crowd to follow; the biggest traditions always seems to be football.
In my opinion football is not a tradition, it’s a sport/entertainment in which big schools have used to up their “celebrity.”
Don’t get me wrong, I believe football is one of the best sports out there and it brings in students and publicity, but once it has been publicized so much it tends to lose its personal value.
For example, when we see a funny commercial it’s funny the first, second and maybe the third time. But after that, it starts to get annoying and cheesy, then eventually we just change the channel everytime it comes on.
Wesleyan definitely has a great sports program, but it is not the center of all things at Texas Wesleyan. It is an element of Wesleyan that continues to show students that Wesleyan is a multidimensional university full of traditions.
These traditions continue to grow because of our continuing growth in our multi-cultural student population. Texas Wesleyan is unlike any other university that just so happens to be traditional, it is the definition of tradition.
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