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Wednesday, May 22, 2024 — Houston, TX

Changeover traditions: greeting or punishment?

Amy Cao / Thresher

By Hugo Gerbich-Pais     3/19/24 10:20pm

Baking, roasting and challenges: This isn’t the recipe for your favorite cooking show, they’re college changeover traditions. The outgoing college government leaders are about to leave, ceding their positions to those rising sophomores, juniors and seniors in need of a resume booster – though some are motivated by an altruistic love for their college. This power vacuum needs to be filled and nearly every college celebrates changeover in a slightly different way, from the whimsical to the disgusting. 

Jones College

Who let Jones cook? For their changeover, incoming cabinet members have various foods thrown at them. It’s even worse for their incoming president, who has all the ingredients of a cake poured on them — from eggs to butter to flour. 

Hanszen College

While Jones fights with food, Hanszen’s cabinet members battle it out in the political arena. On the last cabinet before changeover, the incoming president impeaches their predecessor with creative charges. They wrap up changeover with a creatively named “changeover FITQ” where the outgoing cabinet members present their successors with crazy costumes that they have to wear for the afternoon. 

Wiess College

For a college that prides itself on having the most traditions, Wiess is seriously lacking in the changeover department. They don’t seem to have any set traditions, though last year they did roasts and a TFFW (Team Family Friday Wiess). 

Martel College

Martel may not have three O-Week coords from their own college, but at least they have some interesting changeover traditions. Festivities begin with some sort of team competition between the incoming and outgoing members; past sports include foosball and dodgeball. The outgoing president then gives a speech from the middle of a circle, after which the other outgoing members then pass the Martel torch to their replacements.

Will Rice College

Will Rice has two different changeovers: fancy and trashy. Classy changeover is a nice dinner limited just to the incoming and outgoing members of the executive committee. Trashy changeover is open to the entire college, and each outgoing EC member gives their replacement a challenge. Failure to complete it leads to a punishment. Apparently, eggs, water or pies to the face are common. 

Lovett College 

Like all fun things on campus, Lovett’s changeover takes place in its basement. Outgoing leaders put their replacements to the test by making them play a game related to their role. This year the incoming secretaries had to populate a Google Calendar as quickly as possible, while the chief justice had to do an alcohol quiz.

Baker College

The college behind Baker 13 has a surprisingly tasteful and wholesome changeover tradition. Each of the outgoing cabinet members gives their replacement a gift. For some positions, like president, the same gift has been handed down for over a decade. For CJs, the gifts are cumulative — the outgoing CJ gives their replacement a Squishmallow, as well as a collection of Squishmallows from previous years. 

McMurtry College

What better way to celebrate changeover than with ice cream? In 2021, McMurtry started Sunday Sundaes, where they enjoy free sundaes on their sundeck. They do a special Changeover edition, where the incoming EC members serve the ice cream. They also incorporate some of the chaos seen at other colleges, hence this year’s “declaration of war” on Duncan College. 

Duncan College

The newest college hasn’t had the opportunity to develop any specific changeover traditions beyond simply going insane. The outgoing EC passes the most ridiculous resolutions possible for the incoming EC to handle — last year, Duncan seceded from the Student Association, while this year Duncan accepted McMurtry’s “declaration of war” and allocated $500 to jack them. 

Brown College

Brown’s changeover traditions incorporate a little bit of everything. Their incoming members roast their predecessors, complete with slideshows. In response, the outgoing member gives a challenge to their incoming counterpart. This year’s challenges included making the internal vice president — who runs housing jack — create a house of cards, while the incoming junior treasurer had to do a times tables quiz. The punishment is relatively mild compared to other colleges: a few squirts from a water gun await any incoming officer who fails a challenge. 

Sid Richardson College

Sid Rich also does roasts and gifts to celebrate changeover. Outgoing members are roasted by the incoming cohort, and then the outgoing members give their replacements gifts. Truly a lose-lose situation for them.

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