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Ryanne Meyers posts on her Instagram page @adventures_with_ryanne about walking around the arch in front of King Hall for her tradition’s keeper’s checklist. She claims in her post “I am not really a superstitious person, but I still won’t dare to walk under the arch...”. 

As transfer students enter their first semester at Emporia State, they may feel a sense of longing that comes with being in a new place. Struggling to connect with the community, students and to find their place in this new environment.  

This is how Ryanne Meyer, junior communication major, felt after transferring to ESU last semester from Barton Community College. Since arriving at ESU, Meyer has decided to take part in Traditions Keepers 

According to the hornet central website, “The Traditions Keeper is a distinction that Emporia State University students can earn at the time of their graduation. The purpose of this program is to encourage ESU students to get involved in campus programs and events, strive for high academic success, show black & gold pride and participate in civic engagement within the Emporia community.” 

Students can take part in different traditions on and off campus and send photos of themselves participating in these events to the website. They can start as early as their freshman year and must finish by the deadline to be recognized at graduation as a Traditions Keeper.  

While taking the communication course Social Media for Strategic Communication, Meyer decided to take traditions keeping one step further by creating an Instagram account that logs all of her experiences and completed traditions at ESU.  

“I've also been really interested in blogging and stuff because I want to do a semester abroad,” Meyer said. “I kind of just combined it and made a public account.” 

Meyer’s account @adventures_with_ryanne currently has 77 total followers and has not only been a log of her completed traditions, but also has served as a time capsule of many college memories for Meyer.  

“I think that's another reason why I started the Instagram account,” Meyers said. “It's just going to be a really nice memory holder for everything.”  

If students cannot complete the entire list they can still qualify for different distinctions. According to the Hornet Central website, students who complete at least five traditions from one category receive a black distinction, 12 completed traditions will qualify as a gold distinction, 20 completed traditions will qualify as a Corkey distinction and 30 or more will allow students to receive the highest distinction which is known as a Traditions Keeper.   

Some of these traditions are ones that students may have finished without even realizing it. Living in the dorms, studying at William Allen White library and eating in the Hornet’s Nest are all a part of this list. While some traditions require more time and energy, students like Meyer prefer them. 

“There’s one that is ‘write a thank you letter to some of your professors,’” Meyers said. “Which I think is really cool, especially since I applied for my semester abroad lots of teachers wrote me recommendations.” 

Traditions Keepers has been around for almost 10 years according to Hailey Kisner, marketing and traditions chair for ESU ambassadors. Due to COVID-19, it had lost much of its participation but is now back in full swing.  

Deadlines for this year's graduates to become Traditions Keepers was April 1. However, for those wanting to apply who are not seniors, they can start by visiting hornetcentral.com and entering Traditions Keepers. And for those who aren’t, they can still follow Meyer’s journey on Instagram while she continues to post each of her traditions throughout her time at ESU.  

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