The College of Engineering wasn’t the only student organization denied access to last week’s 2001 Homecoming Parade. Phi Theta Kappa and the Adult and Transfer Student Services were told that their names were not on the list, and as a result, could not participate in the parade as well.
But the difference between the two organizations is that Phi Theta Kappa was able to obtain the forms needed to participate in the parade, while the College of Engineering was not.
“For all that time we spent to be wasted is just angering,” said Brenda Flanagan, a College of Engineering senator who worked on the float.
Both organizations spent approximately $500 and took about a week to build their floats.
Pedro Pozo, a member of ATSS, said that Phi Theta Kappa and ATSS worked together in building the float. He also said they arrived at the parade staging area about 5 p.m., only to be told they weren’t in the parade.
Pozo wasn’t at the parade, but did help the group get the materials needed to make the float.
Mitch Rebenstorf, a member of Phi Theta Kappa, was at the parade and said that when he and his wife showed up, they were told to go to different people to check to see if they were on another list. But, as it turned out, they were not.
“My wife and I attended a special Homecoming Committee meeting and learned exactly what we had to do,” Rebenstorf said.
“We wanted to get the gross amount of beads that were available.”
If a group turned in all the paperwork completely, they would receive beads to pass out with their float. Phi Theta Kappa and ATSS were competing for the SuperBull award for the best float in the parade.
All participants had to fill out an application, a liability form, and the committee had to have a copy of the participant’s insurance for the float.
April Sager, chairwoman for the parade, said the forms take more than 20 minutes to complete, and if one participant did not have them, it was a serious liability issue.
Rebenstorf said he told one of the Homecoming Committee members they would be in the parade and told them to look again for their name. At that time, Rebenstorf started to get upset because all their hard work would have been for nothing.
Rebenstorf also said that the committee said they would call the University Police if Rebenstorf’s temper was not toned down.
“Yes, I did raise my voice. Yes, I was hot and I would tell that person (he yelled to) I am sorry,” he said. “But I didn’t swear.”Tara Marczynski, president for Phi Theta Kappa, said the parade was mainly about school spirit and she would’ve liked to have seen a little more consideration from the committee.
“I remember that it was like pulling teeth trying to get the forms,” Marczynski said.
Sager said because Phi Theta Kappa and ATSS arrived an hour before the start of the parade and that one of the Homecoming Committee board members remembered the application, they were allowed to fill out the necessary paperwork and participate.
“They were a team competing for the SuperBull award, and a board member remembered them,” she said. “We had no recollections of the College of Engineering.”
However, Sager said the University Police is always out for the parade for security reasons, and if that committee member felt threatened by Rebenstorf, the University Police would have responded.
Rebenstorf said he understands that doing Homecoming is a very exhausting job, but to tell someone they are not in the parade is not right.
As for the College of Engineering, Flanagan still doesn’t understand why the committee wouldn’t allow them in the parade.”We arrived 45 minutes before the parade, and I don’t think that 15 minutes is not a big difference,” she said. “We offered to go get our insurance and to refill out all the necessary forms, as well. If they remember us or not, it is just wrong.”
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