Celebrating First Night


Olivia Martini, Contributing Writer

On Friday, Nov. 3, the Class of 2021, along with University President John Bravman, Dean of Students Amy Badal, and the Alumni Board, gathered in Rooke Chapel in celebration of the swiftly approaching end of this first semester and the journey ahead as University students.

Traditionally, First Night enables the first-year class to reflect on its experiences and to appreciate the new relationships the students have formed at the University, uniting in excitement and hope for the future.

The class colors, voted on by first-year students prior to the event, were revealed–royal blue and gray–as well as the class motto–“pursue greatness, prevail relentlessly, prosper together” and an insignia that integrated these ideals. A class book was assembled, consisting of a page of photographs and quotes from each residence hall to honor the memories that have been made thus far.

The Class of 2021 was greeted by their newly elected representatives, who came together to display the product of their hard work.

“The number of times I overheard them practicing their speech, working on edits, or designing the insignia outside of official hours was inspiring,” President of the Class of 2021, Colin Fee said. “Being a part of this random group of individuals who came in not knowing each other, what First Night was, or how to host an event, makes me believe that we, as the Class of 2021, will have no difficulties pursuing our goals and prospering together.”

The night fortified the ties between classmates, revealing each student as not only part of the unified Class of 2021, but also as members of the greater University community.

“I absolutely loved it, and I loved that we had the chance to celebrate being Bucknellians all together,” Vice President of the Class of 2021 Carolina Reyes said.

The Class of 2021 was introduced to the alumni community through an activity in which the members of the Alumni Board raised a symbolic “B” to affirm propositions such as “you were a part of student government” or “you were involved in Greek life.” This demonstration illuminated how the alumni remain connected to one another and to the University as time passes.

“It was cool to see how the alumni are connected to us still and to realize that we’re not very different,” Ben Wilken ’21 said.

After the event, first-years were granted the opportunity to connect with alumni to discuss their experiences at the University, discover common interests, receive advice, and establish influential relationships. The event opened their eyes to the system of support surrounding them, made up of classmates, faculty, and alumni all eager to assist them in their future endeavors.

“It was a great joy to acknowledge the similarities we all share and to describe the vast alumni network that these students are joining. Hopefully, as a result, they will find ways to open doors, volunteer, give back, return and engage with Bucknell during their college and post-college years,” President of the University Alumni Association Tara Lebda ’94 said.

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