Have you ever walked down University Avenue and realized how different yet similar all of the various students on our campus are? West Chester University has such a diverse student body, which makes meeting new people exciting and cool.
Despite all of the different kinds of students on our campus, we are all part of a common campus culture, whether we like it or not.
Culture is defined by Merriam-Webster as being “the beliefs, customs and arts of a particular society, group, place or time.”
Over its last 100 plus years, WCU has constructed a culture that is ever changing with the popular trends and technological advances society goes through.
During my four years at WCU, I have experienced many different trends that have defined my college career and shaped the view I have of the university.
To start off, how could we ignore the West Chester fashion trends? Though probably similar, we can assume that WCU student body has a different norm when it comes to how they dress for class than other universities in America.
After all, what would WCU be without North Faces, Jansports, gym shorts, hoodies, yoga pants, active-wear and UGG Boots? When it comes to fashion for girls and guys, these trends can pretty much cover the “going to class” look. As an incoming freshman, I was always used to wearing jeans to class during high school. After my first month at WCU, I learned quickly that yoga pants and gym clothes were accepted to wear to that 8 a.m. This comfortable style is one that I am more than okay with.
Along with the way the WCU student culture dresses, we also have our own style of socializing. A major way we socialize is through mealtime. It’s not uncommon to see a table of 15 at Barnaby’s for Wednesday’s wing night or a table of 10 in Lawrence on Sunday morning. Students view mealtime as a time to catch up with friends between classes and relax before the rest of their busy day. Not to mention the endless restaurant options in town, the dreaded Einstein’s and Starbucks lines are also times to socialize for students.
It was awesome and new to me when first adjusting to WCU to find out about the gym culture that the majority of the student body possesses. During life prior to WCU years, people who took pride in staying active and making the gym a daily priority never surrounded me. The gorgeous gym facility as well as group fitness classes can be thanked for the motivation students have to stay active at WCU.
During an average weeknight, you can find anywhere from 10 to 40 students participating in yoga, Zumba or any other kind of exciting group fitness class on campus. Students view these classes as not only a fun way to stay in shape, but a time to catch up with friends, similar to Lawrence or Sykes dining halls.
The last trend that has benefited me endlessly at my time here at WCU is the library. Unlike other universities, Francis Harvey Green Library has become a major destination for students to spend their time.
I myself am constantly meeting with group members to work on projects, classmates to study with and friends to plan our spring break trip in this library.
The list of trends we have here at WCU could go on forever. Despite all of them, difference is appreciated greatly among the student body, which I feel explains why West Chester is so great.
Carly Feldman is a fourth-year student majoring in communication studies with a minor in journalism. CF787307@wcupa.edu