Upon arriving at Agnes Scott College I knew that I was embarking on a journey full of tradition. Even as a prospective student I was excited about the possibility of partaking in the many Agnes Scott traditions, especially Black Cat week. Fortunately through the scholarship I was awarded by the Simple Gifts Fund I was able to do just that.
During the week of Oct. 1-7 I was able to celebrate the long held Black Cat traditions alongside my fellow Scottie Sisters. Beginning a week before Black Cat the campus was already gearing up with preliminary events such as Date Raffle. The Agnes Scott Date Raffle is dual-purposed, designed not only to help Scotties find a date for the Black Cat formal but to raise money for the non-profit organization Aids Atlanta as well. Throughout the night the participants showed off their talents as young ladies bid on their chance for a date to the formal. The event was very successful not only leaving many Scotties with a Black Cat Date but also resulting in over $2,000 raised for Aids Atlanta.
As the eve of Black Cat week approached us, each class worked tirelessly to secure their position as the most spirited class on the Quad by collecting items of their color to display. At midnight, sharp, on the morning of Monday Sept. 30 the bell rang officiating the start of Black Cat QWeek. Students of every class rushed to the quad with decorations of their class color. Each class proudly displayed the items that they had scrambled to collect leaving the quad a vibrant display of senior red, junior blue, sophomore green and freshman yellow. Throughout the week each class really pulled together, especially first years that were experiencing this sisterly bonding experience for the first time. Song and dance committees met up to write and choreograph songs and dances to show off our class spirit. Each person used their talents to contribute to festivities. Some stayed up late cramming Agnes Scott trivia facts for the trivia competition others coordinated simple cheers to encourage those who participated in field day.
While there were many activities that catered to the different talents and interest of individual Scotties there was one thing we all did together and that was the Scottie Sister bonfire. Each class prepared songs to honor their sister class and the student body of Agnes Scott as a whole. It was such a joy to stand around the fire and join in with my Scottie sisters as we collectively took pride in each other, our college and our traditions. All these events through the week of Black Cat all let up to one momentous occasion — the Black Cat formal. Scotties and their date dressed up and entered Evans dinning hall that was beautifully decorated in a way that displayed in the luxury and grandeur of the Great Gatsby theme.
At the conclusion of Black Cat week I was able to reflect on the whirlwind of traditions that I had experienced as an Agnes Scott student. At that moment I realized that I am a part of a diverse, outgoing and talented group of women who take pride in our school. As we continue to participate in decades old traditions, we each realize that we also have an obligation to press forward and make our own legacy and make our mark not only on the school but on the world as well.
To me that is what being an Agnes Scott student is all about and I am very grateful to the Simple Gifts fund for allowing me the opportunity to receive an education at an institution that grounds me in tradition and yet propels me to engage in the social and intellectual challenges of my time.
(Editor’s note: Madison Bryant is a graduate of Hobbton High School and a Simple Gifts scholarship recipient.)