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Archive for Tuesday, August 20, 2002

Traditions Night stirs spirit for new Jayhawk students

August 20, 2002

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The fall semester at Kansas University doesn't officially begin until Thursday, but class was in session Monday night at Memorial Stadium.








¢ 6News video: Traditions night teaches freshmen what it means to be Jayhawks

¢ Rock Chalk Chant(KU basketball v. Nebraska 1/9/02) Quicktime Video (4 MB) Audio Only (MP3)


¢ Fans sing Alma Mater(KU basketball v. Nebraska 1/9/02)Quicktime Video (6.8 MB) Audio Only (MP3)


¢ KU Edition 2002

¢ KU Intro

The subject matter included Jayhawks, Rock Chalk chants, fight songs and ceremonial treks down Campanile hill.

For several thousand KU students mostly wide-eyed freshmen the annual Traditions Night marked their first public appearances as real Jayhawks.

So what if they clapped out of sync during the fight song and flubbed the words of the alma mater? They'll have their entire college careers four years, often more to get it right.

"It has history, and it's up to us to keep it up," said Orianiz Medina, a Topeka freshman. "If the tradition dies, then KU dies."

Richard Johnson, dean of students and a former rival Missouri Tiger, led the students in learning the words to "I'm a Jayhawk" and helped them learn when to clap.

"I thought the clapping was hard," said Scott Southern, a Springfield, Mo., freshman. But, he admitted, he was slightly distracted by another KU tradition the cheerleaders.

Baby Jay makes his first appearance to incoming freshmen and new
students during Traditions Night at Memorial Stadium. New students
were welcomed while learning the traditions of Kansas University on
Monday.

Baby Jay makes his first appearance to incoming freshmen and new students during Traditions Night at Memorial Stadium. New students were welcomed while learning the traditions of Kansas University on Monday.

Chancellor Robert Hemenway said KU's heritage would help students feel connected during their time at KU.

"We want you to feel KU is your home away from home," he said.

James Carothers, interim associate provost, told the students about some of the lesser-known KU traditions. Freshmen were once forced to wear beanies. Seniors and freshmen squared away for an annual tug-of-war match across Potter Lake.

Those traditions have died away, he said. But, he said, it will be up to the new generation of Jayhawks to decide traditions for the future.

"These are your traditions now," he said.





Additional photos from KU's Traditions Night, 2002(click on a photo to see larger version)
Scott McClurg/Journal-World Photo Aaron Lindberg/Journal-World Photo
Chancellor Robert Hemenway speaks to students at KU's Traditions Night at Memorial Stadium. The event was part of the kick off to Hawk Week.
Incoming KU students learn about the history of KU during Tradition Night at Memorial Stadium. Freshmen and transfer students were welcomed with a KU history lesson Monday evening.
Aaron Lindberg/Journal World Photo Scott McClurg/Journal-World Photo
KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway and Athletic Director Al Bohl look on before the start of KU's Traditions Night at Memorial Stadium.
Big Jay waits for his introduction during Traditions Night at Memorial Stadium. KU students learned about various traditions and the history of KU Monday evening.
Aaron Lindberg/Journal World Photo Scott McClurg/Journal-World Photo
New Students from Kansas and across America learn how to "Wave the Wheat" at KU's Traditions Night. The event was held Monday at Memorial Stadium as part of Hawk Week.
Kansas University Chancellor Robert Hemenway welcomes new KU students during Traditions Night Monday at Memorial Stadium. Students learned the Rock Chalk chant and other KU traditions.

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