By Brendan McGrath
Dozens of freshmen gathered in the Travers/Wolfe Main Lounge on Monday, Jan. 24 with one goal: design the best cake.
This was to compete in “Does Your Floor Take the Cake?” — one of many events in this year’s Community Competition.
Created for freshmen in the first weeks following their return from winter break, the Community Competition consists of a variety of events orchestrated by Residential Education staff, in an effort to foster a sense of togetherness between freshmen. In a way, it is a less structured return to Welcome Week.
This particular night was devoted to the decorating of cakes, and participants even got to eat their finished products afterwards.
A snowman, a fish bowl, a flag, a X-Box controller and the fountain from the Science Complex all lined a table in cake form. These cakes were judged on their creativity, presentation and incorporation of the theme of the competition — “Putting the U in Community.”
“We’re trying to capture the entire (College) community,” said Sean Modri, freshman psychology major, as his floor constructed a replica of the College’s football field on a large rectangular sheet of cake.
“We can go outside as a community and build a snowman,” said Caitlyn Stack, freshman mathematics major, as an explanation for how her floor’s snowman cake represented the theme.
The competitive aspect of this week of events may be better reflected in tug of war, as the floors rely on brute force to top each other. Additionally, the Penny Wars may spur a last-minute competitive streak, as floors try to sabotage each other by dropping large bills into the jars that have collected the most change; when dollar bills are added to the jars, the money is deducted, thus an incentive to get large amounts of donations.
The competition also includes a Talent Show and Mural Mania, which all contribute to floor’s overall score at the end. The winning floor is determined ultimately by the tallying of a points system, rewarded on the floors’ success at various events. As important as it is to any given floor to win this competition, the staff running it has a greater overall goal.
“Many of the first year students choose to compete, and our staff uses it as an opportunity to encourage the residents to re-connect after being separated for the long winter break,” said Kawanna Leggett, Assistant Director for the First Year Experience.
The cake decorating aimed to bring these students back together as they battled it out and incorporated the theme of community into their desserts. With different shapes and
colored icings, the cakes, created collaboratively by floormates, consistently displayed College logos and floor names.
By incorporating the community theme through various aquatic symbols, Travers 9 came in first place. The cake consisted of a small beach with an ocean scene. They used the scene to represent their situation — one example was that they used various coral to represent the homes that they left in order to join the College community represented by the ocean. It illustrated the process by which College students evolve from their separate beginnings to become a part of a diverse community.