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Traditions

Tulane students come from all over the country and all over the world, with 85% of our students traveling from over 900 miles away to attend Tulane. Students bring unique interests, backgrounds, and cultures to our community, but are united through Tulane’s traditions.

Events begin as soon as students arrive on campus in the fall for New Student Orientation. During Welcome to the Wave, the incoming freshman class is all together for the first time, learning about what it means to be a member of the Tulane community.

Freshmen come together again 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 the Freshmen Convocation festivities. After the welcome, freshmen join a "second line," as they are led out of McAlister by a traditional New Orleans brass band. It's the perfect start to an incredible college experience.

Fittingly, many traditions center around food and festivals as New Orleans is one of the food capitals of the world. 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 Tulane students love 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!

Several other Tulane traditions revolve around cheering for our athletics 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.

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
Tulane!

Some of the most anticipated, but also bittersweet, traditions surround our commencement 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. These guests could include anyone from Stevie Wonder to His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Helen Mirren - before they receive their diplomas and are bade farewell with a balloon drop and a traditional New Orleans "second line."