Tulane homecoming goes virtual

Mercedes Ohlen, Contributing Reporter

Photo by Maggie Pazterz Graphic by Daisy Rymer

During the week of Oct. 12-17, Tulane University will be holding homecoming events completely virtually for the first time. The week-long celebration referred to as “Wave ’20-At-Home,” will include a livestreamed football game against the Southern Methodist University Mustangs, as well as various other online events. 

This year’s homecoming is themed “Welcome TU the Emerald City,” as seen in their promotional material. 

https://www.instagram.com/p/CFVSdawMq01/

The Tulane community is vast and global, and we are eager to reach those Tulanians who may not have previously been able to enjoy the festivities on campus,” Sally Drape, the director of resource development and special projects for the Office of Advancement, said. 

The festivities will kick off with the traditional Lighting of McAlister Auditorium and Opening Celebration featuring President Mike Fitts. There will also be an opportunity for parents and alumni to sit in on professors’ virtual classrooms, as well as the continuation of Tulane’s annual fundraising concert, The Tipping Point, streamed from The Fillmore. 

Members of the Tulane Alumni network will be hosting events this year as well.

“The Reunions program will host a week of content and activities in their online Facebook and other class groups in lieu of the traditional schedule of reunion parties and tailgates, with plans to celebrate this year’s reunion celebrants in-person during next year’s homecoming weekend,” Drape said.

Tulane Dining Services also joined in on the celebration by hosting a “Recipes From Home” contest in which families were able to submit their student’s favorite recipe for a chance to win a signature Le Creuset cookware set and have their recipe featured during the virtual week.

The homecoming football game will take place on Friday, Oct. 16. While COVID-19 has rendered it impossible to allow a crowd, the game will be shown on ESPN2 at 5 p.m. CDT. The Green Wave is currently 2-1 for the fall 2020 season after defeating the Southern Miss Golden Eagles on Saturday. Tulane has won its past two homecoming games versus East Carolina University and Tulsa in 2018 and 2019, respectively. The Green Wave lost to SMU, however, in their most recent matchup on Nov. 30, 2019 as well as their last homecoming game against the Mustangs in 2016. 

Tulane will also continue the tradition of homecoming court, with nominated students graduating in the Class of 2021 campaigning virtually. Tulane’s 2019 homecoming court was the university’s first gender-inclusive court. Students were crowned as “royalty” rather than the gendered terms of “king” and “queen.” This practice will continue in this year’s court as well. Court nominations ended on Sept. 9. 

“Social media will be our best tool,” Drape said. “We will encourage Tulanians to share their experiences near and far during Homecoming Week.”

The Homecoming Committee has been posting updates about homecoming on the @tulaneu Instagram page in order to keep the community updated as well as using their own hashtag, #TUWave20.

“Tulane has shown everyone time and time again that our students, faculty and staff together will innovate and create when challenges arise,” Drape said. “Bringing the festive fun of homecoming to Tulanians around the world in a virtual format will be no different.”