The same old homecoming events are done for. Missouri Western is finally stepping out of the old norm. Every event this year will be completely new and different from previous years. No longer will people be saying, “Oh, this is homecoming week?”
In the past, homecoming has become too repetitive: same events after same events every year. Motivation becomes lost in students when things become too routine. This year’s involvement is definitely moving this school in the right direction when it comes to school spirit and pride.
“Most high schools get really involved in homecoming,” Taylor Kram, student homecoming director, said. “Most students come into college thinking that its homecoming will end up being a high school homecoming on steroids, and they never end up getting that feeling. This year’s the year where it’s finally happening: a homecoming on steroids.”
This is Taylor Kram’s third year as homecoming director, and this is the first year she has seen real major changes in one year’s homecoming from the last. This freshmen class will be getting a homecoming that previous freshmen classes never had a chance to see or participate in.
“I was a freshman last year, and homecoming felt like it never really happened,” Michelle Stevenson, a Student-Athlete Advisory Committee leader, said. “The only thing I knew about was the football game, but this year people are doing a lot better at communicating when events are.”
Kathy Kelly is the new adviser for homecoming this year, and, according to director of community service Lacie Thompson, Kelly has wanted to turn homecoming around, starting with the theme. Thompson has been on the homecoming committee for two years now, and she said this year is going to be totally different.
“We’ve never done anything like this,” Thompson said. “It’s nice because it’s a lot different from what we normally do. All the events are completely brand new, and it’s just a new atmosphere overall.”
This year there will be a record breaking participation number with 31 student organizations involved, which is a big step from the average of 17. Not only are there more organizations involved, but the rules for students not in organizations are out. Every event is now open to everyone, whether or not they are in an organization or not.
For the first time there will also be things going on that were not based on organizations participation.
Throughout the week, there will also be gift card prizes given away to random students at random times, according to Kram. The only qualification to receive a gift card is to wear “Griffon Gear.” As long as you have on Missouri Western apparel, you have a chance to have a gift card randomly given to you.
The Extreme Griff Takeover took place Tuesday, Oct. 18 when students gathered in Potter Theater to help clean up various areas of the stage. Around 175 students from Greek Life organizations to athletics to even the Law Enforcement Academy were working together to tidy up the stage. Thompson was pleased with the turnout as well as the teamwork between the organizations.
“It’s definitely nice to see everybody working together,” Thompson said. “There is a lot of unity. I think it creates a tighter bond with everybody.”
Although the Extreme Griff Takeover already took place, the entire community will still be able to see nationally known comedian Josh Blue perform on Thursday. Josh Blue was a “Last Comic Standing” winner, and has had his own episode with “Comedy Central Presents: Josh Blue.” Blue will be performing in Looney Complex following the “Last Griffon Standing” event that starts at 6:00 p.m. Oct. 20.
Overall, Thompson believes this year will just be one of many good homecomings for years to come.
“It’s definitely a lot better this year, and it’s going to help us grow — each year is just going to get better and better.”