Support your school; be a part of your community
Pep rallies, cheerleaders and marching bands aren’t for everyone. Not everyone will paint their faces in team colours and hold a barbeque in a parking lot. Simply put, “team spirit” isn’t a Kool-Aid that most people will swallow.
Still, most people tend to have some pride—either for their school, or at least, their school’s team. If I had to point fingers, I’d say that Concordia is the exception to prove the rule.
Why does our school lack “team spirit”? Stingers games go unattended, even when we play big names like Harvard (and I’m willing to bet some of you just learnt we played Harvard reading this sentence). Every once in a while, big games (like last week’s Corey Cup game against McGill) can draw out a substantial crowd, but more often than not there are scarcely any students to cheer on the home team.
ConU merchandise sits unsold in the bookstore. How many McGill hoodies have you seen on the streets? What about t-shirts? Even student media publications—often the only way for students to know about the issues concerning their institution and student government—sit forgotten in distribution bins.
Is it because we reside in a large city, rife with other distractions? Because we have two campuses that evenly divide the student population? Because we have no centralized student living space? Or is it simply a side-effect of a time where your identity is no longer shaped by where you work or where you go to school?
Who can really say if a lack of school identity is for better or for worse? On one hand, we have a diverse student population. On the other, student organizations suffer.
Sports teams, interest groups, student government, and student media struggle when there is no community to advocate for, support, and be supported by in turn. Fledgling athletes have no one to play for, new artists can’t find an audience, activities designed to get people together can barely scrape together double-digits.
As the community, we have to decide if the community is worth it. We have to decide that things are worth standing up for—otherwise, there won’t be a “we” left.