Bison 101 shares history of NDSU
Published: Thursday, September 20, 2012
Updated: Thursday, September 20, 2012 12:09
Four speakers shared the history of NDSU at 7 p.m. on Tuesday night. Student body government plans one Bison 101 each month; last month Bison 101 prepared students for their first football game of the season, and this month was a history lesson.
Student body president Luke Brodeur began the event with a “pop quiz” on facts such as the school’s first official mascot (the commonly believed “Aggies” was in fact preceded by the “Farmers”).
Brodeur also asked what the school’s colors are, warning the participants, “Please don’t get it wrong.” Bison colors are green and yellow, “not green and gold,” he said after handing out several stickers for the correct answer.
After the quiz, he described his years at NDSU. He and his roommate didn’t get along, which forced him to meet new people, he had an awkward first date on campus, and he road tripped down to Frisco.
Brodeur didn’t tell his story because he thought it would be interesting, although it was, but because “it’s the little experiences from a bunch of people that makes NDSU what it is,” he said.
Brodeur culminated his part in the event by inviting faculty member Robert Littlefield, who was awarded the 2011 NDSU Distinguished Educator award by the Blue Key Honor Society.
Dr. Littlefield agreed with Brodeur about the importance of little experiences; the NDSU professor of 34 years said NDSU has its Bison identity because “students have always stayed at the heart of the university.”
Many things have changed since NDSU began in 1890. Freshmen are not forced into green beanies and female students are not required to have their drapes closed by 7 p.m., but “the essence of NDSU continues to thrive,” Littlefield said.
After a quick slideshow challenging students to guess which building in a set of three pictures, NDSU Archivist Michael Robinson was introduced.
Robinson shared only a few of the thousands of interesting facts the NDSU Archives has to offer. NDSU has a 100-year-old rivalry with SDSU due to the fact that the first time NDSU played them, SDSU lost 85-0.
There is no building named after one of NDSU’s best presidents because “his last name was Worst,” Robinson said with a laugh. There was not always a street between South Engineering and Old Main; a chemistry building sat between them until December 24, 1909, when it blew up.
He also shared many of the old rules for women on campus before ending with a thank-you and an invitation to visit the Archives or the Archives Flickr site, which hosts over 5,000 images.
As Student Government promised, the event was lively and interesting. Students walked away with much more knowledge, and a free Bison towel. The next Bison 101 event, dubbed “Our Community,” will be held Oct. 30.