Traditions

The Union College sign and students sitting at a table talking to one another.

Motto

Sous les lois de Minerve nous devenons tous frères et sœurs (Under the laws of Minerva, we all become brothers and sisters)

Commencement

Held each year in front of Schaffer Library, Commencement ceremonies include a celebratory walk through the western door of the Nott Memorial.

Video: 2022 Commencement highlights
Photo on the left shows students walkign through the Nott; the one to the right show students throwing their caps up inot the air

Convocation

The official start of the academic year is an opportunity for the entire Union community—students, faculty and staff—to welcome the incoming class.

Video: Convocation 2021 -2022 school year
A student holds a Golub House sign at Convocation 2021

Dutch Dip

Each winter, students plunge into icy water to raise money for Union community members fighting cancer. The event generates thousands of dollars.

A student sliding down a water slide
Cowabunga!!!
Left: President Harris addresses students at the Duthc Dip Right: A student making a running leap into a pool of ice cold water

Founders Day

Commemorating the anniversary of the granting of the College's charter, Founders Day features a distinguished keynote speaker, student musical performances and recognition of outstanding accomplishments in education.

Video: Founders Day 2022
Students singing as part of the Founders Day celebration

Homecoming and Family Weekend

Each fall, the Union community comes together to celebrate creativity, tradition and to make new memories.

Family with their dog at Homecoming

Fido is invited, too.

Various scenes of Homecoming acitivities including students singing

Springfest

One of the most anticipated events of the year, the student-run Springfest features an array of music from contemporary performers and bands. Past festivals have included DNCE, Charlie XCX, Anne Marie, 24k goldn, Sage the Gemini and Hot Chelle Rae. The festival takes place on the expanse of lawn known as West Beach.

Students cheering at Springfest

Springfest

Enthusiastic students cheering on a Springfest performance

Steinmetz Symposium

One Friday each May, classes are suspended to allow hundreds of students to present their research projects to faculty, peers and visiting parents. Topics are fascinating and varied—everything from women's freedom in ancient Athens to anti-nuclear activism.

A student presenting their research at the Steinmetz Symposium

80% of students complete a faculty-mentored senior thesis or capstone project, and many present this work at the annual Steinmetz Symposium research showcase.

Photo shows Bhangra dance performaners and students loooking at motorized vehicles

Nott Memorical icon