Traditions SUU Freshmen Shouldn't Miss

Posted: July 12, 2022 | Author: Abbie Cochrane | Read Time: 5 minutes

Top 11 SUU Traditions

From walking under the Bell Tower and wearing red on Fridays to seeing the ghost of Virginia, new and returning students participate in dozens of SUU traditions to get involved and build up the campus community. Whether you choose to be an official Tradition Keeper, or participate in the traditions in your own way, here are some of the time-honored traditions at SUU.

Be a Tradition Keeper

SUU’s Tradition Keeper shares 50 traditions for students to participate in. Not only does it provide a great opportunity to get involved on campus, but it’s a fantastic way to participate in the legacy of SUU and previous tradition-keeping students. Here’s how to get started as a Tradition Keeper:

  1. Download the SUU app and select the Tradition Keeper icon, or visit the SUU Tradition Keeper website.
  2. Learn about the traditions and start to check them off in any order!
  3. Share your tradition-keeping progress on social media using #suutradition and track personal progress by checking off the Tradition Keeper scorecard with each tradition.
  4. Once all 50 traditions are complete, reach out to the SUU Student Alumni association for a special reward.

Students who complete all 50 traditions will have the exclusive opportunity to purchase a Tradition Keeper stole to wear at SUU Commencement. All participants who finish the program will earn an exclusive keepsake that represents their commitment to honoring SUU traditions now and forever.

Top 11 SUU Traditions

Carter Carillon Bell Tower Tradition

For over a decade, this tradition has seen thousands of students begin and finish their time at SUU. During the first week of their freshman year, students walk under the Bell Tower going east, to symbolize a new beginning. At graduation, they walk back under, going west, to represent the end of an era. Students only walk under the Bell Tower those two times while at the University.

Homecoming Week

Homecoming week is among the favorite times of the year. It means tailgates, wearing red to cheer on the football game, and singing the fight song. But Homecoming is also partnered with events like the Homecoming Pancake Breakfast, the Homecoming Parade, and Forever Red, all long standing traditions of the University.

Paint the Town Red

Paint the Town Red is an annual celebration at the beginning of every fall semester to wrap up the first week of school. This is the perfect opportunity to sign up for any of the 180+ clubs representing just as many interests. During this event, you can find the club that you’re passionate about and meet new friends with similar interests.

Terrifying T-Bird Traditions

The week of Halloween provides spooky fun for everyone! Attend The Scream and participate in tons of fun activities, eat yummy food, and show off your Halloween costume. For something a little scarier, head over to Old Main to catch a glimpse of SUU’s most famous ghost, Virginia Loomis.

Immerse in the Arts

SUU’s next-door neighbor is the world-famous Utah Shakespeare Festival. Check out a show during their season or attend the Greenshow for free. Students in the performing arts department perform there as well, so it’s a great chance to support other students. To add to the fun, visit the Southern Utah Museum of Art.

Get Outside

SUU is known as the University of the Parks and was named the most outdoorsy school in the nation. Take advantage of the beautiful backyard that the campus has by taking a hike up the C Trail, visiting a national park, visiting the Ashcroft Observatory, or getting involved with SUU Outdoors or Campus Recreation.

Take Pictures Around Campus

Perhaps the easiest way to collect and commemorate all your SUU memories is to take tons of photos. Snap a selfie with Thor the Thunderbird mascot, pose with the two Utahraptors standing at the south entrance of the Geosciences Building, shoot a photo with the portraits in the Great Hall, or document any and all your adventures as you go through your college years at SUU.

Check Out All the Unique Statues

SUU has statues commemorating incredible individuals that contributed to the university and to knowledge itself. In the Gerald R. Sherratt Library, visit the statue of Gerald R. Sherratt and give his head a rub for good luck on a big test. High-five the grinning statue of Sharwan Smith in the Student Center for extra Tradition-Keeper points. Attend True T-Bird Night in front of Old Sorrel and give a smooch to your True T-Bird! Go on a statue stroll through the Beverly Taylor Sorenson Center for the Arts to visit the statues of well-loved characters of Shakespeare’s classic plays. Check out the statue Centurium right by the America First Event Center, honoring those who devoted their lives to the pursuit of knowledge in yesterday’s world, and who continue to influence learning today. A full statue tour around campus is about an hour long, but those are just half of the statues around the campus.

Learn at a Lecture

SUU often hosts guest speakers who talk to students and any interested party about a range of topics. Through A.P.E.X. Events, students can attend lectures and keynote speaker talks to learn more about issues surrounding the modern world and society, history, education, and many other subjects. There is also the opportunity to attend Pizza and Politics hosted in the Micheal O. Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service. Each week, learn and debate about current events and issues bombarding the world today, and how a solution might be brought about. This is a great chance to expand your views and learn more about what other people think.

Explore Cedar City

There is more to SUU than just the campus. Located in beautiful Cedar City, there are numerous places to visit around town–it’s not called Festival City for nothing! Attend the Utah Summer Games to watch hundreds of athletes from across the state compete, attend the sheep parade, experience the winter holidays as Main Street is lit up to ring in the season, check out local restaurants and food joints–maybe find a new favorite spot. Explore the mountains and canyons surrounding the city. There’s plenty to do!

Show Off Your T-Bird Pride

Above all, be sure to wear red every Friday to represent the T-Bird Nation! Also, wear red or any SUU merch to campus-hosted sporting events and activities. Go Thunderbirds!

Participating in traditions will not only help you feel like you belong, it helps to build the campus community. Start to build your part of the T-Bird Nation with the traditions above, or maybe create a new one. Learn more about becoming an SUU Tradition Keeper.

Tags: Student Life

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