Five Steps to Fraternity Rush

A picture of fraternity pledges. 

From the alarming shrieks of Quidditch players on the Drillfield to the faces exuding disappointment upon exiting Lane Stadium, Virginia Tech’s campus is second to none when it comes to people watching. There are plenty of sights to behold here in Blacksburg this fall. Here are just some of those visions that you might have missed at home this summer or, let’s be honest, maybe not.  

Freshmen flaunt their “What’s a Hokie? I am” shirts as if they aren’t embarrassed

It’s that time of year where our relatively new Hokies flaunt the brand new gear they can add to their Tech clothing inventory. To the freshmen who wear their “What’s a Hokie? I am” shirt to any event other than to sleep, however, here is some friendly advice: don’t. It’s safe to say that while receiving these shirts might have been the peak of the freshmen induction in Lane Stadium, brandishing said T-shirt classifies you immediately as the type of freshman who insists they’re a sophomore based on credits.

The monstrous entity that is the tour group

Don’t get me wrong, we’re honored that high school students desire to go here. On the other hand, when 30 teens, parents and a backward walking tour guide inhabit the sidewalk, it makes it extremely difficult for literally anyone else to pass. I do find it rather entertaining, however, to catch a glimpse of the overbearing parent desperate to make a lasting impression on the tour guide who, shockingly, has no bearing on their child’s admissions chances. 

Spin Scooters: Nuisance or necessity?

New to Tech this fall are Spin Scooters. I have yet to understand what Virginia Tech is supposedly “testing” with their implementation, but nonetheless, I’m intrigued — more so by the people who ride them than the technology itself. Beyond the obvious group of individuals that attempt to ride the scooters on the most dangerous of terrain, my favorite is none other than the couple who insists on riding the narrow vehicle together like Jack and Rose on the Titanic. 

The suffering fraternity pledge

Pledges are back, baby. That means boys have started to wear the one blazer and pair of khakis they own for the rest of the semester.  Christina Green, a sophomore majoring in Human Nutrition, Foods, and Exercise, in describing her favorite pledge task said, “I like the pledge who bounces the basketball [all over campus] the most… whichever one that makes them look the stupidest.”  Little over two weeks ago did we see the blazer-clad groups dispersed throughout campus to shout welcoming chants to their newcomers. Only is this slightly awkward for those who need to leave their dorms at the unfortunate time in which 50 boys form a tunnel at the only procurable exit. 

Recruitment booths thrusting flyers in your hand only for them to be thrown in the nearest trash can (sorry?)

Whether you’re furrowing your brow and pretending to look bewildered by an Instagram post, skyrocketing the volume on your headphones, or deeply engrossed in an otherwise mundane conversation, tactics to avoid eager clubs and Greek life pose as a necessity to forcing one’s way toward the finish line that is the Turner foyer.  Green knows this struggle all too well and remarks, “I literally will go in the opposite direction to avoid them, because it’s so awkward when they yell at you.” We thank the occasional timid table that seems almost as apprehensive to approach us as we are them. All I can say is strength in numbers folks. Good luck to you all as you brave the determined eyes of club members on the hunt.  

Happiness to return home

Above all else, Hokie Stone beckons us home. We revel in the seemingly overwhelming buzz of GobblerFest and the ground-shaking Enter Sandman that kicks our football team off to an otherwise lackluster start (that’s beside the point). It’s now that I look upon the backs of the freshmen in their “What’s a Hokie?” shirts and think to myself contently, even if only for a moment, “I am.” 

From the campus’ little irritants to its greatest triumphs, we’ve missed it all. It’s an oddly comforting feeling to return to a place you know so well that you can complain about all of its idiosyncrasies. Despite all of our criticism, we’re forever grateful to Virginia Tech for welcoming us back yet again.


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