While this may be a time of separation from others across the world, Student Government (SG) decided that homecoming this year would be a way to bring students together and cultivate USF spirit no matter their home campus or where they are.
After USF merged its three campuses in July to become one consolidated university and with many students choosing to stay home this semester, SG recognized it would have to choose a theme that could reach students across all campuses and countries.
“The overall theme for this year’s homecoming is #ONEUSF to celebrate the consolidation,” SG Director of Programming Sagarika Susarla said. “There were a couple ideas that were thrown around but something that really stood out to me was ‘home’ because USF is our home and we’re also at home wherever we are as well.
“I know some people have decided to come back to Tampa [and] I know a lot of friends have decided to stay home wherever they are. It’s important to put emphasis on the fact that we are a family no matter where we are.’’
Homecoming spirit week will look a little different this year without its traditional socials and photo booths. In a way to still bring up the USF spirit, this year’s events will take place virtually and feature different activities that students can participate from the comfort of their home.
“Monday we have a door decorating contest where students can decorate their door green and gold and then tag us on Instagram,” Susarla said. “Tuesday we have a Bulls trivia night where they’re also able to earn some prizes. Thursday we have a scavenger hunt where we’ll post the list [on Instagram] and then they can take part in it at home.”
Throughout the week, students will also have the opportunity to participate in themed dress-up competitions for a chance to win prizes, such as an Amazon Echo Dot, Pop Sockets, stickers and tumblers.
Starting on Monday, students can dress in their favorite sleepwear for Pajama Day. Next, students can pair up and wear matching outfits for Twin Day on Tuesday. Wednesday is when students can dress up as a tourist and pair a classic Hawaiian shirt with a clunky polaroid.
On Thursday, students may show off their favorite sports team’s apparel. To cap off the week, students can display their Bull pride by dressing in green and gold on Friday.
To compete in the dress-up days and door decorating contest, students must post on Instagram and tag @usfstudentgov. Other events will be hosted through websites like Kahoot! and Netflix Party.
“It will be pretty much through social media because that’s the easiest way we can connect with students,” Susarla said. “So what we are doing is we’re doing a giveaway that is lasting from Monday to Friday where students can submit their pictures dressing up for the day and then tag us.”
Despite the different atmosphere, Susarla said students have the chance to be imaginative with items they already own.
“I’m just looking to see the creativity,” Susarla said. “When coming up with the days for spirit week, I wanted to choose themes that people would already have in their closet. So I’m just kind of looking to see what students do with it because everyone has their own ideas.”