How Do You Spell Spirit and Loyalty?



When I was 13 years old my brother started his four wonderful years at the University of Notre Dame.  I attended my first college game in the fall of 1971 and I believe it was against Navy…don’t hold me to that one, though.  Anyway, we were there for the bonfire and pep rally.  The game was almost an anti-climax but who cared?  I was sold.  I wanted to go to Notre Dame.  Period.  No talking, just action.  In 1972, just one year later, Father Theodore Hesburgh decided to admit women as Notre Dame Undergraduates.  Score!  So, study I did getting higher SAT’s than my brother and having a higher class rank.  I applied.  I was rejected.  A boy from my high school class with lower grades and test scores got a full scholarship to play what else?  Football.  And I was rejected.  I had no plan B but needed one fast.

I applied to Canisius College.  I got in.  In the fall of 1976 I entered as a freshman, waiting for the pep rallies.  There were none.  I waited to learn the fight song.  There was none.  No marching band, no football stadium, no identity, no spirit, no loyalty…at least that’s how my wounded 18 year old heartfelt.

How did I end up here?  It was so unfair – lucky freshmen flocked to the South Bend and I was in Buffalo.  Buffalo?  Are you kidding me?  Really?

Well, I was just dumb.  Seriously dumb.  What I found at Canisius was an intimate learning environment where professors knew me by name and guided me through the maze of opportunity.  I became involved in student government and sat on several search committees.  I did television shows promoting Canisius College with Rev. Ryan, S. J. and met my husband of nearly 30 years. 

I even found school spirit with our horrible basketball team just off NCAA probation for violations surrounding NBA trouble maker, Larry Fogel.  I loved my four years at Canisius and I made friendships that have lasted to this day.  Add to it my 21 years of work service to my alma mater and you have nearly half my life lived as a devoted Golden Griffin.

Tonight marks the second annual bonfire and C-Block Rally in the Quad.  Better yet, the unveiling of the newly arranged fight song.  A real live fight song!  I only had to wait 34 years!

Go Griffs!!!!  Beat Niagara!!!!

Life is good!


Twitter: MidMajorMom

Twitter: JudeCaserta


2 thoughts on “How Do You Spell Spirit and Loyalty?

  1. Go Golden Griffons! Roooaaarrrr…er, um, uh sorry. Musta been some Mizzou Tiger spirit intermingled in me! 🙂 What exactly is the sound a griffon would make?

  2. Geeze, Joe – leave me with something! I believe the Golden Griffin (the mythical creature with the head of an eagle, the body of a lion and the tail of an asp) would roar like a lion. All we have to do is get someone from Baylor to join the discussion and you know what we’ll have? Wait for it…do you know??? Lions and Tigers and Bears! Oh my – notice who is first? I rest my case. I vote for the little guy any day!

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