The students of Cambridge University go to the Bridge of Sighs before the exams and try to breath deep to get more air to help them to pass their exams. This tradition is old but worth keeping. Do you know that every university has its own interesting traditions?
ENGLAND: ROBES, SWEARS AND DEBATS
The universities of Cambridge and Oxford are the oldest educational establishments. So, there is nothing strange that they boast with different traditions that go from generation to generation. They are English: conservatism goes close to innovations and progress. If you are going to enter the Oxford or Cambridge, you have to take matriculation ceremony (from Latin matricula – short list). This is a ceremony of dedication to student life when the newcomer swears in Latin for the university chancellors.
The second oath is usually made on the ceremony of graduating. This is the day when graduate students change their old robe to the new to symbolize the new status they’ve got. Of course, there is one more important ceremonial attribute – small academic hat of square form that is usually called the Oxford Cap in Britain.
Actually, different faculties, especially Oxford and Cambridge have their special traditions. Thus, there is a tradition in Cambridge to take dinner parties Black Tie every Tuesday. When the winter comes, the students of Oxford wrap the gates up with the bright and soft wool. There is another Oxford tradition to take student debates. The debated are usually taken in the special room – Debate chamber. There is a main speaker and opponents. They have different points of view for different topic of the discussion.
ITALY: DANTE AND PETRARCH’S FOLLOWERS
As a rule, Italian students used to study slowly, according to their individual schedule. All students pass exams differently, at different time to follow their study schedule. They pass exams mostly in spring or autumn. If you are lucky to enter the Bologna University, that started its glorious history from 1088, you may proud to visit the same classes as Dante and Petrarch. There are many interesting traditions here. For example, there is a tradition to meet the first snowfall. The students make a big snow hill on tray to represent it to the officiaries. They put money into the snow to help students to get party tonight.
The diploma defense in Bologna is very important event. Why not? The crowds of relatives and friends come to see how it goes. When the official part ends, it is time to get victory laps, drink Champaign and sing songs. There are two important components for graduation in Italian-style: the graduate’s friends should draw or print their friends’ funny pictures and place them all over the campus and city. The graduates are obliged to change their clothes and do something strange and funny during the day. It is time to start new life: graduates must be ready to meet different fates and lessons.
All Italian students are very creative for graduate traditions. Thus, the students, or graduates from Padua, go to the channel bridge and throw the bicycles down into the water. They are really weird.
PORTUGAL: COMBAT DEBUT AND TIN-CANS PARADE
As you probably know, the unique university traditions and ritual student holidays were born in Portugal many centuries ago in the University of Coimbra. You can get there by hiring car in Porto to spend some time to meet the ancient tradition of all Portuguese students. Actually, this is the set of ceremonies that is called Praxe Academico. Watching after the students debuting must be very funny. The students of the first course are gathered together to wear silly clothes and paint. What is then? The newcomers are watered with water and awarded with the colorful stripes that mean your belonging to one or another faculty.
There is also a tradition to participate in the tin-cans parade or Festa das Latas. This is one more silly tradition when newcomers are decorated with cans. May is a period of exams. The academic week starts, with the funny holidays, concerts. The applauses are decorated with multicolored stripes with the signs of the graduate students and professors. Finally, these bright stripes that were made at the moment of entering the university, are burnt in the special pots. This is the tradition to say Good Bye to the student life.
The tradition to burn the stripes came from the middle of the 19th century. All students gathered together after their exams and burnt the belts that they used to bind the books during the year. So, May is a big holiday for students in Porto and Coimbra. The students sing songs, make noisy parties and concerts.
GERMANY: BEER PARTY AND KISSES
Of course, the most of traditions in Germany comes to the big beer party. Nevertheless, there are many traditions that are not connected with drinking, but kissing. Thus, you can see the statue to Gänseliesel. This girl is considered to be the most Тkissed girl in the world. The monument is located in Chöttingenе, close to the city hall. It was established in the 19th century. The new-coming students stood in the long line to kiss the statue after they succeed in their exams. The statue began destroying. The city government prohibited to kiss the monument.
The tradition was transformed since then. The bronze chick is attractive for scientists but not for students now. They always take care of the bronze girl by carrying flowers, dressing their holiday clothes.
There are many universities in the world. They have their own traditions to study and learn. The traditions are funny and very serious, silly and strict. Thus, the graduates from Poland dress the statue of the swordsman that is placed at the university. The universities of your country are also full of interesting traditions. Be ready that entering the university, in our country and abroad, you enter the family of students with their own traditions to keep and follow for 4-5- years of your study.