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OC’s Traditions

More than just a place to learn, OC is a place to belong. Since 1950, we’ve created a welcoming and supportive community where students can thrive academically, spiritually and personally; and we believe traditions are an important part of the OC experience. They help connect us with our past, celebrate our present and look forward to our future.

Homecoming 2019 25

Embrace the Vibrant Spirit of OC

Uncover traditions that enrich your college story.

Every Monday, the OC community gathers during chapel to sing the Alma Mater, a beloved tradition that unites generations of Eagles. "Hail to Oklahoma Christian," penned by the late Dr. Harold Fletcher, a founding and long-time faculty member, echoes through the halls, reminding us of our shared values and heritage.

OC's annual Associates Gala is a prestigious event that honors the university's generous supporters who have given $1,000 or more each year. The gala is a night of celebration, featuring musical performances, inspiring talks and a delightful dinner. Past speakers and entertainers have included the talented ventriloquist Darci Lynne, the dynamic leader of the OKC Thunder Sam Presti, the legendary basketball coach Sherri Coale, and the motivational speaker and author Bob Goff. The gala is an opportunity for OC's associates to connect with one another, and share their passion for the university; and, it's an opportunity for the university to celebrate the impact of our donors' generosity.

When a member of our women's social service clubs gets engaged, the group often holds a candlelight ceremony to celebrate the joyous occasion. The ceremony typically involves the members sitting in a circle and passing a candle around until it reaches the engaged individual. The candlelight illuminates each face, reflecting the shared joy and excitement for the couple's love. The ceremony ends in a chorus of well wishes and heartfelt congratulations, solidifying the bond of sisterhood and creating a memory that will forever be etched in their hearts.

Chicken lovers rejoice! The OC Caf has a long-standing tradition of hosting Chicken Monday every week. Students eagerly await this special day to indulge in their favorite dish - chicken tenders. The tenders are served with a choice of two sides: mac and cheese or mashed potatoes with broccoli. But don't worry if you miss out on Chicken Monday, there's always the option to head over to the campus Chick-fil-A and get your chicken fix any day of the week.

Every year during Homecoming, OC's social service clubs engage in a spirited competition known as Club Games. Teams battle it out in a series of fun-filled challenges and activities, from scavenger hunts and trivia showdowns to escape room adventures and exhilarating basketball matches. The spirit of camaraderie and friendly rivalry fills the air as teams work together to strategize and overcome obstacles, all while showcasing their talents and teamwork. Club Games have become an integral part of OC's Homecoming tradition, fostering a sense of unity and creating lasting memories for participants and spectators alike.

During the holiday season, OC’s Music Department hosts Cocoa & Carols, a delightful concert featuring the University's instrumental and vocal ensembles. The concert's festive atmosphere is enhanced by the aroma of hot cocoa and a grand finale performance that culminates in a touch of winter magic – a flurry of "snow" descending upon Baugh Auditorium.

As the new academic year begins, OC welcomes incoming freshmen with Earn Your Wings, a week-long orientation designed to prepare them for a successful college experience. Participants engage in team-building activities, learn about our history and values, and forge connections with fellow students. This welcoming tradition sets the stage for a fulfilling college journey at OC.

“I think it says a lot about OC that we do not forget. Somehow in all the madness of the world, it only seems right to stop and remember," said Dean of Students Neil Arter.

In remembrance of the Oklahoma City Murrah Bombing and the 9/11 attacks, OC displays the Ralph Harvey Field of Flags, a sea of 168 flags. The flags stand as a silent vigil, honoring the lives lost in these tragic events and reminding us of the enduring strength and compassion that binds us together.

During finals week, OC's Student Government Association hosts “Finals Resort," a much-needed respite for students amidst academic pressures. Students flock to the event to enjoy a variety of stress-relieving activities, including free Sonic drinks, soothing massages, relaxing coloring stations, and the company of adorable therapy dogs. The event provides a welcome break from studying and allows students to unwind and recharge before tackling their final exams.

To embark on the new academic year, OC's campus community unites for First Chapel, a cherished tradition that fills the Eagles' Nest with an air of anticipation and excitement. Students, faculty and staff gather to celebrate unity, renewal and the pursuit of knowledge. The entry of faculty members adorned in academic regalia symbolizes their commitment to academic excellence and reinforces our vision of nurturing well-rounded individuals ready to make a positive impact on the world.

To kick off the academic year with a touch of fun, OC's faculty and staff host First Week Follies, a lively showcase of comedic skits, parody songs and unexpected talent. First Week Follies is more than just a performance; it's a testament to the spirited camaraderie that thrives within our community. It's a reminder that learning and growth can coexist with joy and humor, setting the tone for a year filled with laughter and connection.

As the new academic year unfolds, OC's freshmen take the stage for Freshman Fanfare, a vibrant showcase of their talents and creativity. Inspired by the University's beloved Spring Sing tradition, Freshman Fanfare provides a platform for first-year students to shine, featuring choreographed group performances and captivating individual variety acts. The event is a celebration of the unique talents and perspectives each freshman brings to our Eagle family.

OC celebrates the culmination of our students' academic journeys with three graduation ceremonies held throughout the year – spring, summer and winter. A hallmark of the ceremonies is the personalized hooding ceremony for undergraduate students, signifying the completion of their academic journey and the beginning of a lifelong journey of learning and impact.

OC's annual History Speaks event brings to campus renowned civil rights leaders who share their firsthand experiences and insights, fostering a deeper understanding of the ongoing struggle for equality and justice. Held in February in Baugh Auditorium, History Speaks has hosted a distinguished roster of speakers, including Andrew Young, Wheeler Parker Jr., Diane Nash, 1968 Olympic medalists John Carlos and Tommie Smith, and Carlotta Walls LaNier and Terrence Roberts of the Little Rock Nine. These trailblazers have inspired generations of OC students and the wider community, their stories serving as powerful reminders of the resilience of the human spirit and the enduring power of nonviolent resistance.

As the leaves begin to change color and the crisp autumn air returns, OC fills with an air of excitement and anticipation as we prepare to welcome home alumni and students. Held every fall, Homecoming is a grand celebration filled with fun, games and nostalgic memories. It is a time to reconnect, reminisce and honor our rich history and traditions.

OC's Homeward campaign is a unique fundraising initiative combining friendly competition among our social service clubs with a noble cause – supporting student scholarships and missions. Through Homeward, alumni have the opportunity to elevate their alma mater's standing in the prestigious U.S. News & World Report rankings, while simultaneously empowering the next wave of leaders, thinkers and changemakers, ensuring that the legacy of OC continues to shine brightly.

Since 1952, Ike the Eagle has been the spirited mascot of OC, embodying the resilience, agility, and unwavering spirit of the OC Eagles. Inspired by Isaiah 40:31, Ike serves as a constant source of encouragement for athletes, delighting fans at basketball games and making surprise appearances throughout campus. Starring in, and on, cool campus swag, Ike is an integral part of our community, reminding everyone of the importance of teamwork, sportsmanship and the joy of celebrating victories together.

Culminating a season of enthusiastic recruitment, OC's Induction Night unites newly inducted members of social service clubs for an evening of camaraderie, celebration and a shared commitment to making a difference. The event fosters a sense of unity and shared values, creating a hub of excitement and anticipation and serves as a transformative occasion, marking new members' official entry into a community of service and impact, filled with opportunities for personal growth, leadership development and meaningful connections extending beyond the realm of social service.

OC's intramurals foster a spirit of friendly competition and togetherness among social service clubs and the freshman class. These inclusive events feature a diverse range of sports, including basketball, flag football, soccer, ping pong, pool, swimming, cross country, volleyball and softball, catering to a wide range of interests and skill levels. Clubs vie for the coveted All Sports title, and some even engage in friendly matches against alumni, adding an extra layer of excitement and legacy to the intramural experience.

Each year, OC's social service club, Kappa Sigma Tau, invites all students to join them on a memorable float trip down the Illinois River. This weekend getaway, known as Kappa Float, provides an opportunity for students to escape the hustle and bustle of campus life, immerse themselves in nature, and create lasting memories with friends.

During finals week, OC's faculty and staff host a Late Night Breakfast, a heartwarming tradition that provides students with a much-needed respite from studying and a boost of energy to fuel the final push. The event features delicious food, lively music and words of encouragement from professors and mentors, nurturing a sense of community and care. It's a tangible expression of the university's commitment to our students' well-being, reminding them that they are not alone in their academic journey.

OC's annual Lighting of the Commons kicks off the holiday season with a vibrant celebration bringing together the OC family and surrounding areas. Held in the heart of Lawson Commons, the event is a cherished tradition that has delighted guests for years. The event features hot chocolate, photos with Santa, a bustling marketplace, a dazzling fireworks display and twinkling campus lights – all creating a magical atmosphere to celebrate the holiday season. It's an invitation to embrace the holiday season with open arms, surrounded by the warmth of friends, family and the spirit of giving.

OC's Team OC, honors the victims of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing through participation in the annual Memorial Marathon, embodying the spirit of resilience and unity. The marathon serves as a reminder of the importance of community, the strength that lies in unity, and the unwavering spirit of humanity in the face of adversity. Team OC members honor the past, celebrate the present and inspire the future through their participation.

Each Monday morning, the OC community gathers for a unifying chapel service, promoting a sense of belonging and spiritual renewal. The service includes the Alma Mater, the Pledge of Allegiance and a time of worship. More than just a religious obligation, Monday Chapel is a cherished tradition enriching our community.

OC's Rush Week provides sophomores and upperclassmen with opportunities to explore various social service clubs. Through a variety of events, including game nights, dinners and pool parties, rushees gain a deeper understanding of each club's mission, values and culture. Rush Week culminates with an Induction Night, where newly inducted members are officially welcomed into their respective clubs.

OC's official colors, maroon and silver gray, were chosen by a student body vote. But while those shades stand as the primary colors, OC also embraces a spirited palette of additional hues, each reflecting a distinct aspect of the university's identity. Together, these colors create a harmonious blend that encapsulates our traditions, values and aspirations.

For those seeking to showcase their Eagle pride, our bookstore offers a wide selection of merchandise featuring our official colors. From classic apparel to unique accessories, the bookstore provides endless opportunities to proudly display one's affiliation with OC. Visit the OC bookstore to show your Eagle pride with the latest merchandise featuring these iconic hues.

Hosted by the Alumni Office, OC honors its graduating seniors with a series of celebratory events, including an Oklahoma City Thunder game with free food and drinks, a night of food trucks and alumni gear, and more. These events provide a fitting send-off for our seniors and strengthen a sense of connection and pride among alumni.

OC's annual Spring Sing is a vibrant musical extravaganza that lights up the stage during Spring Visit weekend, welcoming hundreds of students from around the globe to campus. As one of our most celebrated and cherished traditions, Spring Sing is a student-driven production featuring choreographed numbers and parody lyrics by social service clubs and the freshman class. Hosts and hostesses, along with a live band, further enliven the stage, making Spring Sing a crowd-favorite event that unites the OC community.

OC's commitment to Study Abroad extends far beyond an annual tradition; it's an integral part of our educational philosophy, deeply embedded in our culture. With opportunities available throughout the year, our students have the flexibility to embark on global learning experiences at a time suitable to their academic and personal journeys. Our Study Abroad programs span across Europe and Asia, immersing students in diverse cultures, enriching their academic pursuits and expanding their global perspectives. Beyond traditional study abroad experiences, we also offer mission work opportunities in various countries, providing our students with unique avenues for service and community engagement. Our dedication to global education is evident in our unwavering support for students venturing beyond the familiar. We take pride in advancing a spirit of adventure and openness, encouraging our students to embrace the transformative power of international experiences.

OC's dining experience extends beyond a regular meal plan. The cafeteria delights our student body with its rotating menu, ensuring a variety of culinary options throughout the year. To add an extra layer of excitement, the cafeteria hosts themed nights that coincide with seasons and holidays. From Thanksgiving's traditional turkey and pecan pie to the tantalizing flavors of fair food like funnel cake and cotton candy early in the fall semester, the cafeteria's themed nights are a testament to its commitment to keeping our students' taste buds engaged and their spirits high.

In a lighthearted tradition that celebrates the milestones of its members, OC's men's social service clubs engage in a unique practice known as "Thrown in the Pond." Upon getting engaged, a member of the participating club is playfully tossed into the pond located on the university's campus, symbolizing the beginning of a new chapter in their life.