It’s Friday night of the first weekend of the semester. Throngs of students trail up and down South and Main Street, making their way to and from off-campus houses “getting their Sparty on.” Yells from balconies fill the air as music blasts from suite windows, and the number of backpacked students seems only to increase as the night goes on. For students at Castleton, this has become a normal scene for the first weekend on campus.
But what about the second weekend, or the third? And what about every night of each?
Something in the air is different in fall 2012, as the campus and the surrounding area haven’t calmed down one bit in the subsequent weeks. What is it though?
Marissa Francis, a CA in Babcock Hall where many party-goers come home to roost, noticed the energy earlier than ever before in her three-year tenure as CA.
“Even before the returns moved in, it seemed like there was a little more excitement than usual,” Francis said.
Students have taken note of the increased weekend presence as well. David Nelson, a senior who is no stranger to the party scene, has his own take.
“There are less places for the amount of students to go,” Nelson said. “The party scene in Castleton seems to be growing.”
Katie Curler, also a CA in Babcock, sees a connection between sports and the increased weekend activity.
“There are lots of freshmen on the football team,” Curler said.
All these freshmen arrived on campus two weeks earlier than everyone else, which gave them a chance to bond long before the semester got under way.
“I feel bad blaming sports, but it’s all I can really think of that’s changed in the last few years,” she added.
Another contributing factor seems to be the incredibly outgoing nature of the entire incoming class. Vinny Corrado, another Babcock CA, claims that everybody “got to meet each other real quick.” He sees that this scenario is a far cry from his own class.
“I still don’t know half my grade,” he added.
Francis shares Corrado’s stance on the state of the incoming class.
“People formed bonds so fast. It’s like they saw each other and boom, they were friends,” she said.
There’s nothing wrong with some good clean camaraderie among incoming freshmen, so where down the chain did this become a crisis that needed to be addressed by President Wolk himself in an email that noted a significant amount of”late night/early morning disrespectful behavior”?
Curler has witnessed several scenarios already that she called “some real big messes.”
“The freshmen don’t really understand their boundaries yet,” she said. “There’s gotta be something happening in high school that’s making them really excited to come to college. There are girls wearing next to nothing and drinking straight from bottles.”
The consensus is that people need to consider the repercussions of their actions more in the future, but that this much activity does point to a very cohesive group of incoming freshmen. With this many students excited to experience the freedom of college, it may just be a matter of waiting for them to settle down and mature, according to Francis.
Even though many see campus as chaos, she sees it in another light:
“I see a community.”