by Joshua Chlebowski ’21
Since the basketball season started last week, there is a renewed focus on having, or at least expressing, some form of friar pride here on campus.
Although there is nothing inherently wrong with equating friar pride with the Providence College basketball team’s performance, the fact it is almost exclusively used to do so is problematic.
It would be pointless to argue that basketball is not important to the PC community. When games are at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center, buses line up behind Raymond Dining Hall to shuttle students directly to the games. Students pass out flyers advertising free food for the first attendees at these games, and between email blasts and table tent updates, students are constantly reminded of upcoming games.
Should students not go to a game, they will almost certainly be met with questions about whether they have school spirit, why you weren’t there, and the ever-popular, “you have to go to at least one basketball game during your time here!”
It is these sentiments that lead to the pairing of school spirit with attendance at various sporting events, though especially basketball games. Taking pride in the performance of PC’s basketball team is not a bad thing, but it is important to remember that sports are just one of the many incredible features of our community.
Friar pride and school spirit should not be exclusively used to describe reactions to sports teams’ accomplishments, or titles given to those who regularly attend such events. You can have pride in PC without ever attending a sports game or actively wearing PC apparel.
On a campus with 4,834 students, what is there to take pride in besides athletic achievements?
One could start with the incredible alumni network, always willing to help establish connections and provide advice in regard to life in the professional world.
One could look at the beauty of the PC campus, and the dedication of the various employees that allow for the floral, natural elements to shine. Or how about the UG2 workers that work tirelessly to keep residence halls clean, even when the residents are making their jobs harder?
On that same note, consider the campus safety officers that respond to emergencies and their efforts to keep PC a safe campus. Even the smiling faces of dining hall employees that greet and assist countless students every day can elicit that feeling of pride in our school.
There are so many parts of the PC community that are deserving of our appreciation, and consequently, our pride. The people that work to keep the campus running, who do the mundane tasks that many students do not even think about, are among the people we should be lifting up and admiring.
Friar pride describes a recognition of the superiority of any of the various elements which make up the friar family community at PC. While this can be used to describe one’s feelings about sports achievements, it should not be used exclusively for this.
Whether you are someone who actively attends sports games or someone who focuses expressing appreciation for the hard work of the various employees and members of the campus, there are many ways to take pride in PC’s community.