On Thursday Sept. 13, the 2012 Homecoming court members were surprised in their classes with sashes and balloons. However, what was not implied with the celebratory actions is the huge time commitment associated with the title.
“Homecoming court is whatever you decide it to be. There are 10 people on court, and some people on the court will be at every single event for the entire time it is happening,” Executive Director of Homecoming Bridgette Carrier said.
Court members were given a survival guide, a list of their expectations and a calendar of the events they are expected to attend, Carrier said.
Carrier (senior-kinesiology) said that it could be hard for some of the Homecoming court members due to their other major commitments they may be involved in on- and off-campus.
“There will be people on court that do and stay for the whole time, and others that will have to leave because of their involvement in other organizations,” Carrier said. “It really is a big honor, and some people will take advantage of it.”
The survival guide that each Homecoming King and Queen nominee receive consists of a list of important Homecoming executive contacts, a note from Royalty Director Malik Richardson and an elaborate list of events that the members are expected to attend and participate in.
Each event has the specific time and place of the occasion, as well as a side note of description of the event and a provided dress code. While normative events such as the FTG Talent Show, Homecoming Parade, the Pep Rally and the Homecoming football game against Northwestern are listed, there are other events required of the members that might be unexpected.
“I saw the Google document for events, and it was so overwhelming. I love it, it has been so much fun, from everything from dance rehearsal for the talent competition, ice cream social, to the wing eating contest,” member of Homecoming court Courtney Moskios (senior-animal sciences) said.
For some members of the Homecoming court, success in time management is key in being a successful role model during and after Homecoming week.
“I knew it was going to be hectic. Being on it is such an honor, you need to utilize time management skills. It is so important to be a student leader as well as a role model, and how to go about getting work done,” Tracey Edouard (senior-public relations) said.
With all of the activities and events associated with being on Homecoming court, members have to find the balance between school and academics work with the extensive list of responsibilities.
“For me, my grades are important, but next year, after I graduate, I’m not going to remember grades. I’m going to remember my experiences here and the people I have met,” Julianne Robbins (senior-biology) said. “Being on the court is the coolest thing ever, and it’s what Penn State is all about, being involved and giving back to the school.”
However, another aspect of being on the Homecoming court is the social aspect, including the chance to get to know the other student leaders participating in the court.
“The coolest thing is that we are getting together, and we are going out and hanging out as friends,” Moskios said. “We’re forced to do the competitions and stuff, but we are hanging out outside of it all, too.”