Tulane has one of the most geographically diverse student bodies in the entire nation - 85% of our students travel from over 300 miles away to attend Tulane. With them they bring a unique mix of interests, backgrounds, and cultures, and Tulane's traditions play a defining role in uniting such a diverse group.
Traditional events begin as soon as students arrive on campus in the fall. After everyone settles in their dorm, the new freshman meet in McAlister Auditorium for an official welcome from university administrators, the head of student government and Tulane’s president, Michael Fitts. Tulane’s cheerleaders and marching band also join in the Freshmen Convocation festivities. After the welcome, freshman join a "second line," as they are led out of McAlister by a traditional New Orleans brass band! Everyone cheers on the incoming freshman, and it's a fun start to an incredible college experience.
One of the most anticipated Freshmen orientation events is the Riverboat Cruise. As the majority of our new students do not come to Tulane with an entourage of friends, the Riverboat Cruise is a great way to meet other first year students.
Many traditions tend to center around food and festivals, seeing as though we are located in New Orleans! Tulane is probably the only school where you will eat red beans and rice every Monday in the dining hall and chow down on gumbo and fried catfish on Fridays. Another Tulane student favorite is boiled crawfish. Spring is crawfish season and also when Tulane students are constantly eating crawfish and attending "crawfish boils". The best event centered around crawfish is Crawfest: Tulane's two-stage, ten-band outdoor music festival for students and the community, that provides 18,000 pounds of free crawfish for the taking; (last year they were gone in four hours!). In addition to Crawfest, Tulane students enjoy free local food and music every Friday afternoon right on campus during Fridays at the Quad, (or FAQ), student's own weekly, mini-music festival.
Several other Tulane traditions revolve around cheering for our Green Wave teams. Tulanians are loud and proud! At any sporting event, both students and alumni can be heard cheering and singing along to Tulane's fight song. Below is Tulane's favorite cheer, The Hullabaloo, whose words have morphed over the years into the current lyrics. The Hullabaloo is yelled every time the Wave scores a touchdown or a run, and after each victory.
A One, A Two, A Helluva Hullabaloo
A Hullabaloo Ray Ray
A Hullabaloo Ray Ray
Hooray Hooray Vars Vars Tee Ay
Tee Ay Tee Ay Vars Vars Tee Ay
Some of the most anticipated, but also bittersweet, traditions surround our graduation festivities. The celebration begins on Friday night when the graduates, their families and their friends attend the Wave Goodbye party on Tulane's academic quad. They enjoy live music and delicious food while recounting their fondest memories of Tulane. During the commencement ceremony on Saturday in the Superdome, graduates hear from special guests - who could include anyone from Stevie Wonder to His Holiness the Dalai Lama - before they receive their diplomas and are bade farewell with a balloon drop and a traditional New Orleans "second line."
Did You Know?
Tulane's athletic teams are known as the Green Wave after a song written in 1920 by Earl Sparling, then editor of The Hullabaloo.