Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Sunday, April 21, 2024 — Houston, TX

Colleges go green recycling O-Week themes for 2024

Brian Mendoza / Thresher

By Kristal Hanson     2/27/24 10:29pm

Preparation for next year’s Orientation Week has already begun. Advisors have been selected and co-advisors have applied. Themes have been announced and, in one case, re-announced. Argue with your friends over which are fantastic and which shouldn’t have made it past the drawing board (or out of the recycling bin). 

Brown College: DiscO-Week

This theme is straightforward and groovy, so it’s no wonder that “DiscO-Week” was already used by Martel College in 2018 and Jones College in 2003. It is clear what Brown must do to outshine past DiscO-Weeks: get a massive disco ball. Once the disco ball has been acquired, Brown can dive into the theme’s potential for electric beats, classic dance moves and questionable fashion.

Hanszen College: LegO-Week

This theme capitalizes on people’s love for Lego and is perhaps the greenest of the 11, having been borrowed from Martel in 2020, Jones in 2007, Duncan in 2015 and Hanszen itself in 2005. Group names can delve into the multiverse of Ninjago, UniKitty and the Lego Movie, which brings about the question: Is there such a thing as too many Legos? 

Jones College: EncantO-Week

Unlike Hanszen and Brown, Jones’s theme brings something new to O-Week 2024.  Jones references the 2021 Disney movie Encanto that had little kids scream-singing “We Don’t Talk About Bruno.” Similar to “LegO-Week,” “EncantO-Week” has a world of characters to draw on. There is flexibility that comes with “encanto” translating to “magic,” allowing Jones to branch out beyond the Disney film. 

McMurtry College: AstrO-Week

McMurty announced their theme as “PharaOh-Week” on Jan. 31, but, on Feb. 10, changed it to “AstrO-Week,” a theme connecting to the cosmos. The new theme gives McMurtry a universe full of references for group names such as zodiac signs, constellations and aliens. 

Duncan College: LimO-Week

Roll out the red carpet for “LimO-Week” which hopes to make new students into VIPs and give them a glamorous entrance into university life. This theme could inspire group names related to elegant events such as the Met Gala, the Grammys and black tie parties. Much like “DiscO-Week” demands a disco from Brown, this week is begging for Duncan to invest in limos.

Lovett College: NintendO-Week

Lovett sustains the playfulness of its prior O-Week, “UNO-Week,” with this gaming theme. This theme also marks the third confirmed repeat this year as “NintendO-Week” was used in 2017 by McMurtry, in 2014 by Duncan and in 2007 by Jones. It is clear why this theme was recycled; it has a lot of well-known material to work with. Iconic Nintendo characters and games and the more recent “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” will allow Lovetteers a wealth of topical group names. 

Martel Meowtel College: CalicO-Week

The most jarring part of “CalicO-Week” is that Martel refers to itself as “Meowtel,” a unique move that sets Martel apart from other themes this year as the only college to rename itself. “CalicO-Week” is one of this year’s more polarizing themes, with people either thinking it’s adorable or associating the theme with furries. 

Will Rice College: WILLO-Week

“WILLO-Week” says in its mission statement it is all about “planting new roots.” The use of the “w” in week to make the word “willow” is stand-out. This theme has strong ties to the natural world, similar to “AstrO-Week,” hopefully resulting in funky group name combinations of nature and pop culture. 

Baker College: Dynamic DuO-Week

In a world filled with the harsh realities of Duo Mobile’s two-factor authentication, Baker College swoops in to try and save the reputation of “duo” with “Dynamic DuO-Week,” a theme used in 2007 by Hanszen. Why settle for a regular duo when you can have a dynamic one? This theme opens the floodgates to many iconic pop culture pairings that include the likes of Bert and Ernie, Beavis and Butt-Head or Shrek and Donkey. 

Sid Richardson College: iHeartRadiO-Week

A radio-related theme is fitting for Sid, a college that blasts music from the rooftop every Friday in the tradition of Radio Free Sid. “iHeartRadiO-Week” is one of the more creative themes with lots of potential for music-related group names. 

Wiess College: Team Family Wiess

Unlike other colleges, Wiess sticks with the tried and true theme “Team Family Wiess,” a tradition that led the 1998 Campanile to address Wiess as “O-Week rebels without a theme.” Expect Wiess-centric puns relating to things like war pigs and the color goldenrod.  

More from The Rice Thresher

FEATURES 4/16/24 11:07pm
Peggy Whitson breaks the glass ceiling, lands among the stars

Peggy Whitson has spent more time in space than any other American. She was the first female, nonmilitary Chief of the Astronaut Office for NASA and the first woman commander of the International Space Station, but despite all her success, Whitson denies any claims of special talent or giftedness. Above all else, she said, hard work and perseverance brought her to the top. 

FEATURES 4/16/24 10:26pm
Sitting Around the Bonfire with Ben and Michael

Being a small school has benefits and disadvantages. Some claim that one of the drawbacks of being a relatively small campus and having a strong residential college program is that it is often difficult to find events or activities happening across campus. That’s where Benjamin Liu and Michael Mounajjed stepped in.


Please note All comments are eligible for publication by The Rice Thresher.