When this issue hits campus, much of the school will be reveling at the annual Ivies celebration on Brunswick Quad. This weekend is a well-earned break from the relentless workload at Bowdoin and a defining part of the College's traditions. Some administrators and faculty members are wary of the deleterious effects a week of bacchanalian carousing may have on academic commitment, and their concern is understandable. Ivies merrymaking often requires a few days of recovery after the fact, and for some, working on the Sunday after Ivies is as far-fetched as spending Saturday afternoon in the library.
However, we encourage professors to remember that many students have spent the week leading up to Ivies working extra hard to prepare for the weekend. The Ivies mantra "it's a marathon, not a sprint" is not just about taking it one drink at a time on Friday and Saturday. It also refers to jumping the academic hurdles—papers, readings and exams—leading up to the weekend.
Most students, it is safe to say, will partake in some Ivies celebrations. But some will not, and it's important to note that while Ivies is one of the greatest weekends on campus, it won't make or break the college experiences of those who don't participate. Athletes on the track, lacrosse, baseball, tennis, and sailing teams are all missing some of Ivies to represent Bowdoin against rival schools. Outing Club Leadership Training will lead students into the last vestiges of Maine snow and climb Mt. Washington. Some students choose to opt out of the alcohol-soaked festivities to focus on end-of-year academic work, like honors theses or impending final papers and exams, while others who choose not to imbibe may participate in one of the many off-campus Alternative Ivies events. Instead of regaling these students with everything they missed, we should perhaps make a point of congratulating them when they return.
Tenuous as our recollection of College history may be in the midst of all the revelry, it is worth remembering that Ivies is a tradition dating back to October 1865, when the junior class planted ivy near the Chapel. Past performers include Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Simon and Garfunkel, and B.B. King—whether or not Childish Gambino is destined to rank among these greats, let's commemorate the weekend as another safe and delightful chapter in Ivies' illustrious, 147-year history.
The editorial represents the majority view of The Bowdoin Orient's editorial board, which is comprised of Erica Berry, Nick Daniels, Carlo Davis, Sam Frizell, Linda Kinstler, and Zoë Lescaze.