Origins of a Tradition

When Sarah Seberger and the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) had a breakfast meeting with then Truman President Darrell Krueger in the fall of 2009, the topic of discussion was school spirit and how to increase spirit across the campus. Seberger, who was serving as the vice president of SAAC, proposed to the committee that they have a designated day of the week for wearing Truman apparel. The committee thought it was a great idea as most of them had spirit days in high school. Once she got the approval of Linda Anderson, Truman’s associate athletic director and the SAAC advisor, she reached out to Laura Bates, Center for Student Involvement director, Liz Jorn, instructor in exercise science, and the members of Student Senate. This informal group brainstormed and ended up with the foundation for Truman’s Purple Fridays with the ultimate goal to encourage campus pride in being a member of the University and being a Bulldog. Student Senate voted on a resolution* deeming the first Purple Friday as Dec. 11, 2009.

The group worked hard to encourage students, faculty and staff to wear purple every Friday to show their Truman Spirit. A more formal Purple Friday committee was formed in the fall of 2010 and additional activities were added that included student gatherings in the Student Union Building and music on the Mall, as well as giving out prizes every Friday to reward those who were found showing their Truman Purple Spirit.

The Purple Friday Committee is now under the umbrella of Truman’s Student Government, but continues to have involvement from Residence Life, the CSI and SAAC, along with other students dedicated to showing their support and pride for Truman State University by wearing purple every Friday.

Beyond Campus Purple Fridays
Seberger graduated from Truman in 2010, but she still tries to wear purple on Fridays. “In law school, that wasn’t hard, but now that I am actually practicing law it is going to be a little more difficult,” Seberger said. “Wearing purple is actually a great way to accidentally bump into Truman alumni or people familiar with the school who want to talk about it. I ran into an alumna at Costco who was wearing a Truman T-shirt. We happened to unload our carts at the same time and both of us had Truman car decals. It was great to talk for a few minutes about Kirksville and Truman athletics. I certainly continue to feel that sense of pride in Truman and being a Bulldog.”

•    Supports in conjunction with Student Athlete Advisory Committee “Purple Fridays”—a day in which students, faculty and staff are encouraged to wear purple and visibly show support and pride for Truman State University;
•    Encourages all students, faculty, staff, student organizations, Student Affairs departments, the Athletics department and all other departments to participate in the “Purple Fridays” event beginning on Dec. 11, 2009; and
•    Supports programs designed to increase school spirit and respect for the quality institution in which they attend.

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