On Wednesday, Sept. 2, campus social organizations gathered in Pope Banquet Room to honor the seniors who will graduate in December with a candle-lighting ceremony hosted by the Student Programming Board.
The "100th Night" ceremony marks one hundred nights until graduation. With roses and balloons adorning the room, each organization took the microphone to honor its seniors with kind words, a few tears and a gift of appreciation.
"The 100th Night ceremony is a wonderful tradition that helps seniors remember our university," said Aastha Ghimire, member of the Student Programming Board. "They will feel connected and remember the occasion for years to come."
Kendall Robertson, assistant director of Student Life, lit the senior candle, which represents the spirit of the senior class. She then lit the blue candle and explained that it represents the long, blue W line the seniors are about to join. Each candle signifies the idea of the flame lighting their way and ensuring sweet memories of The W.
"Getting to graduate in December is really lucky for me," said Kaci Faulk, member of the Silhouette social club. "I took summer classes every year, but felt like it was important, and now I am seeing the benefit."
Faulk felt that the tradition and ceremony were wonderful ways to honor students.
There were mixed emotions among the seniors about these last 100 days. Bayley Barrett, a member of the Mam'Selle social club, said she stayed an extra semester rather than struggle through a heavy schedule of 19 hours last spring. She said she was sad to be leaving The W, but she was looking forward to finding a job and gaining experience before she pursued a master's degree.
After each organization spoke and all the candles were lit, the group gathered in a circle around the room and read the poem, "To You We Bequeath," and sang the traditional W song, "Friends."
Robertson noted that members of these organizations cherish the memories they made at The W, and it is hard to leave their friends, who have become like family.