At Stanford, peer health educators hand out more than condoms — chocolate kisses and mouthwash get passed around before the annual October Full Moon on the Quad (FMOTQ). Under the moon (and perhaps the influence), freshmen are “welcomed” to Stanford with a kiss from upperclassmen, and the event features Stanford’s infamous marching band, among other student groups. This year, to cut down on sketchiness and make the event more palatable to non-smoochers, organizers brought in more music groups and tried to enforce a dry policy. But even with a lower sketch-factor, it’s a prime opportunity for finding first love, defeating awkwardness, and catching mono — and two out of three isn’t bad.
Ain’t No Mountain…
When the bells of Abbey Chapel begin to ring at Mount Holyoke College on a randomly-chosen autumn day, classes are cancelled. Many students hop onto buses for a hike up Mount Holyoke to celebrate Mountain Day, the oldest tradition at the college — just one year younger than the school itself. With nice weather and ice cream at the top, the steep climb is a chance to enjoy the outdoors before that nasty New England winter kicks in.
At Reed College in Portland, Ore., Underwater Basket-Weaving 101 is a legitimate course offering — during Paideia, that is. Paideia (Greek for “education”) is a ten-day period preceding spring term during which a student committee organizes master classes, workshops, and lecture series on any and all obscure, taboo, and tongue-in-cheek activities imaginable. From calligraphy to “giant-concrete-gnome-building,” these not-for-credit tidbits seek to fill in the gaps left by even the best liberal arts education and to encourage learning for learning’s sake.