Behind the scenes of Homecoming

Behind the scenes of Homecoming

Students reflect on the work that went into one of UMBC’s most exciting Homecoming Weeks

Henry Strand

Contributing Writer

strandh1@umbc.edu

 Homecoming is on the horizon, and over a month of preparation is about to yield a week of wholesome fun to unite the student body with things that everybody loves, including food, games and laughter.

Retriever fever is tightening its grip as Homecoming Week barrels towards campus like a freight train. All are invited to participate in five days of rollicking festivities, kicking off with Homecoming Hype at noon on Monday.

The ultimate goal is to bring the campus together to share in a unique celebratory experience, one that will not separate students from the athletes they are supporting, but it takes a great deal of cooperation and foresight to plan these events.

“We’ve been having meetings since late August,” said Shruti Gujaran, a junior biochemistry major working for the Student Events Board. “We’ve been planning for a good part of the last month.”

Tuesday is the deep breath before the Erickson Field bonfire ignites at dusk on Wednesday night, featuring everyone’s four favorite words: free Buffalo Wild Wings!

“We try to brainstorm things to happen at the rally that will get students involved along with athletes to bridge the gaps between athletics and other focuses,” says Gujaran.

The games really begin Thursday night with the variety show in the University Center ballroom, while Friday evening will bring Homecoming into full swing, when the uproarious Retriever Rally in the RAC kicks in with even more food and games for bonding.

“It’s not going to make everyone friends overnight, but you want it to be one step closer,” says Gujaran. “We didn’t want the competition to separate students and athletes; we want people to get involved and be a part of it.”

Unbeknownst to those adjusting to their new class schedules, the past month has been spent tirelessly organizing in hopes of unifying an incredibly diverse and multifaceted university.

“We’ve been trying to build a sense of community and school spirit since (seb) started.” said Gujaran. “The more you try the more you get accomplished. We’re not setting our standards low in any way, we’re thinking about what we can do for the future student body.”

Many have yet to realize that these events — fun as they may be — are actually working towards a brighter future at UMBC. While we have a wealth of programs, departments and options for every student, there’s little material to hold it all together, to keep us from simply going our separate ways.

That’s one of the reasons Saturday’s Homecoming Carnival will host (amidst the games, rides, food and freebies) an alumni hospitality tent to extend our community spirit even further beyond our campus.

It took a lot of work to piece this jam-packed week together, and like the greater things in life, it’s free. All are encouraged to come out and support our athletics, our alumni and our student orgs. The hard part is making it happen, all it takes on your part is having a good time.