Wabash College's president Greg Hess "rings in" an incoming freshman class.
(Photo courtesy of Wabash College)
I have had a fairly hectic week already, and it is only Wednesday.
I somehow made it through a two-hour town council meeting in Cloverdale yesterday evening. I attended the Cloverdale school board's monthly meeting on Monday as well, and have written up at least three big stories since that morning.
This week, another occasion has been on my mind, one that I look back on with fondness. That occasion is Freshman Saturday at Wabash College, my alma mater.
Freshman Saturday is the day when incoming freshmen finally get settled on campus and begin a thorough integration into the culture of the College.
The highlight of the day is when all the freshmen and their families file into the Pioneer Chapel, the focal point of the College, to be "rung in" as students. The president will ring a bell that belonged to Caleb Mills, one of Wabash's first teachers, to perform the ceremony.
I remember my Ringing In like it was yesterday. I remember that I was 90 pounds heavier, and also that I had a full head of hair. I remember how hot it was inside the Chapel, and how I had no idea what to expect the rest of the day, much less the next four years. The photo to the right shows a little of my nervousness, and perhaps that of others.
This tradition is a very unique one, one that begins to forge bonds between classmates, and further connects generations of Wabash alumni. It is nostalgic, at least for me, because I remember how naïve I was, and how aware I was that I wasn't, by any means, the smartest guy there.
The experience, especially thinking about it now, is very humbling in that way. As such, I hope that the Class of 2022 stays in the moment this Saturday, and appreciates what they are becoming a part of.
As an alumnus, I wish them the best of luck, and to have the confidence not to look back.