Smile: it’s all about class color and class pride!

Stepsinging September '10
Stepsinging September '10

Hi all,

Quite a few things happened since the last time I wrote to you so I’ll try to write about everything in a way that makes a bit of sense… Since I also wanted to write about class colors this week, I decided to make everything work around the same theme of class pride!

(PS: please let me know if it worked out and made some sense in the comments section! :) )

September ’10:     Munger Hall ’10-’11 Purple Class of 2014! 

Step Singing September ’10

(a) So to begin this class pride discussion, I need to write to you about class colors. I’m not sure if class colors are unique to Wellesley, but my girl friends are usually confused when I tell them things like “yeah our class color is purple so it works out, I’ll just buy the purple shirt” when we’re out shopping. For those of you who have been to Wellesley, you must have noticed on the facade of our chapel and in several other places that the five main colors on campus are blue (the official color of our sports teams, appropriately named the Wellesley Blue), redgreenpurple and yellow. Since there are only 4 class colors and 4 classes at a given time at Wellesley, all classes have the same color for all 4 years. At the moment, red is the color of senior class (2012), green is the color of the junior class (2013), purple is the color of the sophomore class (2014- my class and, if you ask me, the best class and color at Wellesley! hehe) and yellow is the color of the first year class (2015). The color kind of graduates with the graduating class so every class can pick what shade of color they want to be associated with- for example: the previous senior class was called the Golden Class of 2011 and we’re the Royal Purple Class of 2014. I’m not sure if our first years, the new yellow class, decided on their shade of yellow, but the shades usually get decided in class council in the fall so I assume their color will soon be made public. If I remember correctly, class council is a subdivision of Student Government and one of the many ways a student can get involved in leadership here at Wellesley. I was involved in it last year but was too busy (or so I thought at the time at least) to sign up for it at the beginning of the semester. Class council is probably the best way to showcase class pride. Last year, we organized a first year formal at the end of the year for students in our class and it was quite a success. This year, the council organized a competition for sophomore students to design our class sweatshirt and it will be distributed to us on Wednesday. I’m super excited to add another purple item to my collection (remember reading a post about the blogger who’s a purple addict? yup, that would be me!). Class colors are really important in two occasions throughout the academic year: at the beginning when we welcome the new class and at the end when we say goodbye to seniors. In the first instance, returning students come back to find the campus decorated with the color of the new class. So that’s how I saw yellow every where in my residence hall, the campus center and the bookstore when I arrived in late August. Sometimes, the class color is also prominent on the year’s course catalog and on the homework diaries sold in the bookstore. At the end of the year, seniors decorate all the buildings on campus with their color. I’m not too sure why that is the case but I guess they just want everyone to see how cool their color is (even though, I personally would have preferred to see purple everywhere the entire year last year as opposed to just at the beginning of the year LOL). Anyway, there are several ways to show class pride at Wellesley. Some include: competitions between class crew teams, during homecoming weekend when each class has to decorate its golf cart for the parade, the first year class photo during orientation, stepsinging during commencement at the beginning of the year, and as an alumnae during summer reunions. Now, if you’re like me and was terribly lucky to be admitted in a class color that’s your favorite color: every week because you love your class color and love wearing it! (BTW: my Little Sister Marcia is in the yellow class and loves yellow so I guess I’m not that weird girl that walks around wearing and carrying things in the color of her class color LOL!)

Step Singing September ’10

That being said, there are also, less obvious ways to show class pride…

(b) Like my fellow bloggers, I had to register for next semester’s classes last week. Class registration happens in a hierarchical system at Wellesley so the longer you’ve been here, the more choice you have in terms of the classes and professors you want to take. Because most of our classes are small (an average of 24 students, I believe, and a student:faculty ratio of 8:1), classes tend to fill up really quickly and first years rarely get their first choices. So right from the start of my first year, I learnt that I should always have back-up schedules for my back-up schedules! With all that, I managed to have two semesters of classes and professors that I was quite happy with in my first year. I felt good about the registration process this year and it is without a back-up schedule for my back-up schedule that I entered my selections on Banner Self-Service on Wednesday morning. Registration starts at 8AM and…. I was done at 8:02! I got all my classes (PSYC statistics+lab, PSYC of language, a French writing course and BISC 112+lab) and I could not be more relieved! I do feel bad for the first years who wanted to get into my classes because those classes were full by 9AM but I can’t say that I am going to cry about it… I mean, aren’t we all going to be seniors soon enough? Anyway, registration is quite an event on campus. It allows people to bond whether it has to do with students who hope to take a class with their friend(s) and frantically try to make all of their schedules work together the night before registration, or it has to do with a group of students who are complaining about the fact that they did not get any of their choices at lunch. I actually enjoy getting on Facebook after I entered my classes to read my fellow students’ statuses about registration- always a laugh! People will complain and write things like “I can’t believe SPAN101 was full at 8:01!” and “you didn’t get BISC 113? me neither! let’s take 112 instead together!” or “I wanted that teacher too! Did you email her to be on the wait list? I did.” Those statuses are quite entertaining for me as a sophomore reading about other sophomores and first years so I can only imagine what seniors think when they read ours. I think that registration is part of class pride because as a senior, I’m sure I will enjoy reading the Facebook statuses of underclasswomen while thinking “Hahaha FY registration… I had to endure that as well but thank God for being a senior! :p”

(c) Class pride is also expressed in events like cultural shows. I wrote to you last week about Mamaland, the Wellesley African Students Associations’ annual cultural show but I forgot to mention the traditional senior class dance that seniors perform at the end of the show as a goodbye to four years of Mamaland performances. On Friday, I went to see Shruti Laya, the annual cultural show organized by the Wellesley Association for South Asian Cultures (WASAC) and the opening dance was called the First Year Dance. There were about 15 students in the dance and I could tell they really enjoyed being on stage together. I can imagine that the preparation of the dance was also a bonding experience. I know that Ethos, a support group for students of African descent on campus also has a similar forum for first year students of that organization to bond and present to the larger community something that they worked on together. I did not participate in the Ethos Class of 2014 dance last year but my roomate did and had a blast! I still feel close to the girls in Ethos even if I did not dance with them and go through the intense and stressful process of planning, learning, rehearsing and performing the dance. But I am sure that sharing that experience together, especially because it happens early in the year, would have strengthened our relationships. Anyway, I enjoyed Shruti Laya (the students sold Indian food during intermission!) and I’m so glad events like that happen on campus. As an international student who has been to and lived in so many countries, it was important for me to choose to attend a place where I would not feel like I was losing this integral part of me (being what I call a third culture kid). Wellesley does a good job of allowing me to stay in touch with that part of me. I’ve become close to students from all over and I must credit first year orientation and organizations like WASA and Slater (Slater House is the ‘home away from home of international students’) for that.

Shruti Laya 2011Shruti Laya 2011

Here you go prospective students! I told you all about class colors! Feel free to post any questions you may have about them but I really hope you will be members of the red class of 2016 if you decide to apply to Wellesley! :) Best of luck with your application!

Until then, this was me Lori x

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