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When in Rome?

Posted by on Tuesday, September 7, 2010 in Balance, Nashville, Vanderbilt Blogs, Vandy Athletics.

OUA counselors and student tour guides are frequently responding to myths about going to college in the South.  Perhaps most often we’re asked, “Is it true that girls wear dresses and guys wear button-ups to football games?!”  I find myself, fellow counselors, and student guides falling over ourselves trying to explain the tradition.  Sometimes our explanations sound like an apology.  I overheard such a conversation the other day and wondered whatever happened to the ‘when in Rome’ mentality?  I don’t hear California colleges apologizing for hippies or New Yorkers explaining their tendency to sport  an all black attire.  The South has a tradition of finely dressed sport spectators.  It’s not something we’re sorry about, rather we celebrate the tradition!  Kentucky Derby, anyone?

That being said, it’s a tradition, but not the rule of the land.  Plenty of women choose jeans and a t-shirt and plenty of male students paint their chests in true SEC spirit.  I wore a jean skirt and football jersey to my first tailgate here in the South.  My favorite outfit is a black sundress with fun, gold accessories.  In the cold, though, you’ll find me bundled in my fleece!  The option to dress up for tailgates and celebrate in style is just one of the many awesome traditions that make going to college below the Mason-Dixon line so much fun!

Here are some other fun reasons to go to college in the South:

  • Fried chicken for breakfast is perfectly acceptable
  • Everyone knows the words to Wagon Wheel, Dixieland Delight, and Callin Baton Rouge
  • Cowboy/cowgirl boots keep your feet warm in the winter and look more stylish than Uggs
  • Nobody does football like the SEC
  • Sweet tea is the default option

Any other comments/ideas/thoughts on going to college in the South?

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  • Julianna

    September 7th, 2010

    Kylie, the Kentucky Derby is a great thought of another dressed up sports tradition. But don’t think you have to dress up that much, ladies! No large hats, please… those would block the view from the all-important student section. GO ‘DORES! I love your other reasons to go to school in south. Don’t forget Fishin’ in the Dark and Sweet Home Alabama when singing southern songs. Finally, sweet tea is the only option. :)

  • Alex

    September 8th, 2010

    Great reasons to go to school in the South, and we should never be apologizing for the traditions that make us Vanderbilt. My favorite tradition of all is that even in February, every Friday afternoon after class is met with an enormous outdoor celebration to start the weekend. Horseshoe and grilling to kick off the excitement of the weekend all year round? Count me in. I know you won’t find that anywhere in the Ivy League.

  • Bihm

    September 8th, 2010

    I like it ha. Don’t forget about the weather, though! The summers may sizzle, but that just heightens the anticipation for a brisk winter reprieve. Although, if i must i’d choose a hot summer over a cold winter any day.