By Jasmine Mendiola
“Wings Up” is becoming a new tradition that was made possible by three students who wanted to make a difference at Our Lady of the Lake University. Newly elected Student Government Association President Chris Robinson, and student leaders Cooper Rendon and Taylor Lauer spent most of their summer working at OLLU trying to fulfill the complaints they heard students murmuring around campus.
“This will be my third year; I’ve heard a lot of complaints about how OLLU doesn’t have enough spirit, causing people to want to go to other schools,” recalls Robinson. “I just wanted people to be proud of being at OLLU.”
All major universities have a tradition of hand symbols representing their school. Whether that symbol is shown at games, school pictures or pep rallies, the symbol represents a state of pride students have for their home away from home. OLLU may be a small institution compared to others, but it does not mean our spirit and ideas cannot bring a big university feel to a smaller campus. Lauer, being the original founder of the hand signal, thought it felt and looked right since our all of our teams are labeled as Saints. But like every great idea, there were a few obstacles along the way.
“Well, at first whenever you bring something new, to a place that is as conservative as OLLU you always get back pushes on what the CDPs [Congregation of Divine Providence] is going to think, what are all these people going to think,” said Robinson.
To make sure that “Wings Up” would be in full effect, not only did the hand motion symbolize our school, but it has meaning behind our core values as a community. By placing one thumb over the other, and keeping the rest of your four fingers together and facing straight up, your hands start representing the shape of wings.
“Each wing of the sign has four fingers [and] each finger represents a core value. And us being the Saints do not only do the minimum of just the four values, but double the amount of work which allow us to soar beyond the horizon,” said Rendon.
By just having the idea of “Wings Up” fly into action during the summer, Robinson, Rendon and Lauer saw a huge impact of support from the community by having it trend on social media before it was fully announced to the public. “I really didn’t expect it to get as much initial backing as it did. It started as just a school assignment for Taylor and turned into something bigger. Just never thought, as a freshman, I would be a part of something that is being considered as a new tradition to stay,” said Rendon.
“Wings Up” is the only the beginning of many changes and new traditions to come. Another linked in event will be the Night Before the MOSS (March of the Spirited Saints), and the actual MOSS. The night before will be honoring a selected sports team before their home game, in the library community circle behind the library. There will be food, a DJ, dancing and the honoring sport team getting hyped for the game. SGA is proud to host each of these celebration parties for the sports teams, and get as many OLLU students hyped for the game. And to continue the spirit on the actual game day, an hour before the game, SGA will be back at the library community circle to march with students from all over OLLU to march to the area the game will be taking place. As the students march to the game, SGA will be leading the students in cheers and chants all the way over to make sure every rival team knows whose house they are in.
So, calling all Saints! It’s time to unite as a school, community and in spirit to show off our blue and white pride.