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Pep rallies lack true spirit

Letter to the Editor | Monday, October 9, 2006

I read Rohan Anand’s article about the decline in student pep rally attendance with some amusement. The cause for decline is not in academic workloads, extracurricular activities, or anything similar. The decline is because, to be blunt, the pep rallies have departed from their original purpose.

In the darkened Stepan Center days, if you went to the pep rally, you got hot and sweaty, you yelled your lungs out, and got fired up for the game. That was the rally’s purpose. The well-lit, Disney-fied experiences currently happening in the Joyce Center do not qualify on those counts. Now everyone brings their families and sits in the seats cheering politely, making sure not to offend anyone with noise or (God forbid) enthusiasm.

Spirit cannot be forced, it must be inspired (hence the common root of the words). The current pep rallies, with dorm sponsors and matching shirts and go-yay-Irish shrillness, seem manufactured and, as a result, are ill-equipped to get the job done. Want better pep rallies? Go back to the rally’s roots. Get people together in one place so they can get crazy and fired up. Don’t package or sanitize it, but rather embrace and enjoy it.

Mike Coffey


Class of 1991