When I was applying to colleges, I had my eye on schools located in metropolitan areas: New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, etc. As someone who enjoys bustling streets and sleepless lights, I knew I wanted to end up in a big city. However, I eventually realized that while I want to settle in a big city, what I really wanted for my college years was a traditional campus atmosphere. I wanted to immerse myself in school spirit. That was when I knew Syracuse University was the school for me.
I got my first taste of what bleeding orange really means when I attended “Own the Dome” the spring before my freshman year. On that day, I became part of “Otto’s Army.” I got to see the inside of the famous dome–“where the magic happens”– and learned the SU anthem, “Head Held High.” I immediately fell in love with this school and all of its spirit and emotion. I have never owned more orange clothing than I do now and I am so proud of it. Regardless of how the basketball and football teams play, everyone shows their unconditional support for our teams. As an SU student, even if you previously knew nothing about sports, you just become a die-hard fan. And, member of Otto’s Army isn’t a title you vacate at graduation either, it stays with you for the rest of your life.
This basketball season is the first time in history that both SU’s men’s and women’s basketball teams have made it to the Final Four. All over campus and on social media, students are proudly showing their orange pride. The Student Association even provided free buses for students to travel to Houston and Indianapolis for the men’s and women’s Final Four games. Students were lining up at midnight the night before bus tickets were available at the ticket office just to secure a spot. That is dedication!
Bleeding orange isn’t just about the festivities and tailgates though. As a member of the Orange Nation, you are welcomed into a strong and supportive network the day you arrive on campus. I recently attended a guest speaker event featuring a Newhouse alum who now works at ESPN, and he expressed how he will always answer an email sent from an syr.edu email. The alumni network here is incredibly connected and they are always willing to extend career advice to current students, all you have to do is ask.
For students who are considering SU, don’t say I didn’t warn you — your wardrobe will have an unhealthy amount of orange in it. (Orange is the new black!) And you will soon realize that this campus we call home weaves students, faculty, and staff together with one common thread: we all bleed orange!