100 Days of Senior lets students celebrate graduation

Photo courtesy of Rich Ramos

Photo courtesy of Rich Ramos

by Belle Ward, Features Editor

Seniors have the chance to celebrate their approaching graduation with other students in their class during Simpson College’s third year of 100 Days of Senior.

Rich Ramos, assistant dean of students, and Andy English, director of alumni records, planned the events for the benefit of graduating seniors.

“We thought that it would be a good idea, mainly stemming from the fact that a lot of the seniors weren’t doing May Term anymore,” English said.  

May Term allowed students to be able to celebrate with one another after their final semester, he said.

“But now it’s finals, baccalaureate, commencement and you’re gone,” English said.

100 Days of Senior began as a way for seniors to spend time with one another outside of the classroom, said English.

“Seniors are busy, and sometimes it’s hard to think back and reminisce when you’re still in the heat of the moment of, ‘OK, I have finals coming up, I am looking for jobs and internships and things like that,’” English said.

English said he hopes to give seniors the opportunity to reconnect with the students in their class through a variety of events.

“It’s important to give them the opportunity to enjoy each other’s company, to talk about those next steps, but more importantly just to reminisce on their time at Simpson,” English said.

Ramos said that graduating should be celebrated, since it is a big step in students’ lives.

“While most students are ready and excited to move on, we want to make them get a little sentimental too about the time they were here. For some, it makes graduation a little harder, but that’s a positive,” Ramos said in an email to The Simpsonian.

100 Days of Senior will conclude with an event called Wine and Cheese at the Gates, which will take place on May 2. This event was previously held at the Sigler House.

“This year, we’re actually going to have it out here on the quad, in front of the gates, and a lot of people get pictures taken with the gates and College Hall on the background,” English said.

Each senior is allowed to invite two faculty or staff members who have inspired them while at Simpson. In the past, English said students have also invited security and dining staff.

“The neat part about that too is they get to invite faculty, staff members, anybody in the Simpson world that has impacted them,” English said.

English hopes the change in venue will bring in more seniors who are interested in the event.

Other activities for 100 Days of Senior include a happy hour event at the Brickhouse Tavern and a Real Life Panel and Social event. The calendar for the events was sent out to seniors before the beginning of spring semester.

Approximately 150 seniors attended senior bingo on Jan 24., which is where senior Brianna

Lund won a crockpot and a cordless drill.

“I think it’s a nice gesture to us, to celebrate, like a goodbye party,” Lund said.

She had not attended bingo regularly since her sophomore year, but the practical prizes interested her.

“It was less crowded. I think more of the prizes worked well for what we need,” Lund said.

Ramos said he felt a lack of senior programs caused the end of their last semester to be anticlimactic but hoped these events could change that.

“It means we did all of the right things as a community and the students have connections here that will last a lifetime, which is what we really want,” Ramos said.

English said recent graduates may be hesitant to attend alumni events, but the events are for alumni of any age.

“We do a ton of alumni events, and we want to give seniors an idea of what those alumni events look like,” English said, “because most of what we do is modeled after what we do as alums.”

He added, “We want to give students that opportunity to start that transition and to reflect back on their time at Simpson before they’re already gone, because it’s fun to do that reflection with your fellow class.”