Events and Traditions
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Events and Traditions

Traditions at Converse

Events

Spring Term kicks off with the late night “Montgomery by Moonlight” marathon in the student center. From ice skating and bar trivia to karaoke, the all-nighter draws the entire campus and is a great opportunity to build community and launch a new academic term.

Whether it’s coffeehouse-style comedians, musicians or spoken word poets, there’s always a fun way to take a break during the week thanks to our very active Converse Activities Board. Annual favorites are Open Mic Night, Casino Night, Movie on Back Campus and Spring Fling.

Weekend trips range from apple picking or tubing in the mountains, catching a hockey or baseball game in Greenville, running the Cooper River Bridge or taking in a shopping and Citadel Football game in Charleston, or at 21+ St. Patty’s Overnight in Charlotte.

Traditions

In the Converse sisterhood, we celebrate our fellow students’ accomplishments and give each other a leg up in good times and bad. Perhaps where the link of sisterhood is most strongly seen is in the Big Sis/Lil’ Sis tradition. Every entering freshman and transfer student is adopted by a big sister within the junior or senior class. At the end of the year, freshmen band together as a class is Big Sis/Lil’ Sis turnaround, a week for expressing thanks and giving back to their Big Sisters and newfound friends.

Since 1974, every Converse woman takes pride in associating with one of these two colors. Students who graduate on odd years are called “Red Devils,” while even-year graduates are “Pink Panthers.”

Each student at Converse is asked to actively pledge allegiance to the Honor Tradition with the following pledge: “I do solemnly pledge my honor that as long as I am a student at Converse College, I will faithfully uphold the principles of the Honor system, will cherish and guard its traditions, and will respect and observe its requirements. I make this pledge in view of the pledges of my fellow students, which signifies our mutual Trust and Resolve to keep our honor forever sacred.” Each new student signs the Honor Pledge at a formal ceremony and this Pledge hangs in Wilson Hall during her experience at Converse.

This annual service officially opens the academic year with the entire Converse community in attendance. Following the service, the Converse family enjoys lunch on the front lawn.

Each spring, the Converse College community joins together in the annual celebration of the birthday of Dexter Edgar Converse, the school’s founder. It was upon Dexter Converse’s ideal of the well-being of any country depending upon the culture of her women that the college was established in 1889.

Afterwards, everyone enjoys lunch on the college’s front lawn, including Dexter Converse’s favorite dessert, strawberries and cream.

Festival of Lessons & Carols is an annual student-led tradition at Converse, and is a service of worship involving all segments of the local community. This beautiful event celebrates the holiday season with traditional Christmas carols and hymns, along with student-led scripture readings as part of the program. In addition to the two Christmas trees on Twichell stage, luminaries in memory or in honor of loved ones will line the front campus for the evening’s glow.

Students, faculty and staff celebrate at this annual winter formal with a live band, dancing, drinks and hors d’oeuvres.

The year 1889 started Converse College’s first academic term. Every fall we commemorate that event and celebrate school spirit with a week full of competition and celebration. Classes band together, panthers and devils competing for the coveted 1889 Spirit Cup. In the process, worthy causes are served, creative muscles are flexed, and fun is had by all (even the professors!).

Hats On/Hats Off are bookend events for the Senior class as they gather with faculty, staff and administration to kick off and end their Senior year, with food, drinks and crazy hats.

Scholarship, leadership, service and character. These are the criteria students consider when electing the May Court. This long-standing tradition has evolved from the May poles and pageantry of yesteryear to become a meaningful celebration of the Converse women whose lives most exemplify the values we all hold dear.

In celebration of becoming a member of the Converse family, Freshmen receive a Converse Pin. The pin has the crest of the Converse family. This is the first official symbol given to students in honor of completing their first year of studies at the College and it presented by a college member who have had an impact on the student during their first year.

In celebration of completing the second year of studies, Sophomores are presented with a Core Values Bracelet. The Core Values of the institution serve as guiding principles for an extraordinary life. The links – one for each value – connect each Converse sister to one another. The circle does not end just as the sisterhood endures for all time. As students prepare to move into the second half of their college experience, living and shaping a life based on the Core Values of the College becomes a distinguishing quality of the Converse woman.

During the spring of their Junior year, students are presented with their class ring by the president of the College. Student leaders and alumnae join sophomores and their families at this pivotal event.

Juniors choose faculty sponsors to honor as a part of the ceremony.

Traditionally, while the Converse woman is still a student, the ring is worn with the insignia facing herself. When she graduates, the insignia is turned outward, representing that she is ready to face the world.

The shape of the Converse ring is highly recognizable and connects generations of alumnae. Converse women have been known to recognize each other by their rings in grocery stores, business settings and far-flung locales.

The Converse community gathers with families and friends of the graduating class in the most important event of the Converse academic year.