Editor’s Column: Playing Dress Up

Halloween is the perfect time to dress up and act like whatever you want to be. Some people dress up as fictional characters, or animals, or whatever their heart desires.

Well, this weekend I dressed up too, though not to go trick or treating but instead to act like I’m some sort of great successful person. For the first time since early 2020, I put on my suit and tie for an event outside of my own bedroom and was a guest at the Ferris Foundation dinner.

First and foremost, being invited to the Ferris Foundation dinner by Dr. Alspach is one of the biggest honors I’ve had as a student in the Sports Communication program. She gave me an opportunity to witness the event and intermingle with a few different people.

It’s interesting to see the financial side of an institution such as this. I feel as if I saw more millionaires at this event then in my entire life combined. Which explains all the pomp and circumstance when it came to eating.

For the second time in my life, I was given two forks and two knives along with a spoon to eat my meal. I had to have my professor explain to me why there was so much silverware. Apparently we work our way in with the different courses. Odd.

The food itself was the best food I’ve ever had. As someone who eats peanut butter so much I dressed up as a jar of it for the Torch Halloween party, eating food that I’ve never heard of before was a change of pace.

There were a few instances where people quickly vacated my presence when Dr. Alspach introduced me as both her star student and the Editor In Chief of the Torch. It was funny to see the facial expressions shift when these people realized who I am.

I guess it is the only power I have compared to the people in attendance. Which included many dean’s, provosts, vice president Fleischman, and President Eisler.

To be honest, I was out of my element when it came to actually talking to people. These are people who have left a mark on this university, some more than others. There were donors who helped raise millions of dollars for this university, deans and provosts that have worked here for years running their programs.

They were used to being at this sort of event. While I was just trying to figure out how to stand properly without looking too out of place.

At my dinner table, I was seated next to a CEO and Founder of a company, who had bought the table we were eating at, which means that he essentially sponsored the table. Jake Daugherty, the coordinator for Corporate Sales and Advancement for Athletics, Dr. Alspach, and Perk Weisenberger, our retired Athletic Director.

What do I even say to these people? Daugherty was the only person I have anything in common with, and most of the time he was talking with the CEO next to me. I struggled to even find the right time to get a word out.

I found that most of the time, it was better to just keep my mouth shut and let Dr. Alspach introduce me to everyone and make conversation when asked a question. I found myself keeping myself closed off so that I did not off-put anyone or act unprofessional, which 

The dinner and presentation went off without a hitch, they announced that they officially past their goal of $115 million dollars in donations and funding ahead of schedule with a $5 million donation by pharmacy alumni Phil Hagerman. 

Being present at such a high value event was one of the coolest experiences I’ve gotten to have while here at Ferris and I can’t thank the people who got me to this point enough.

Now I put my suit and tie away for another extended period of time, and go back to being the guy in sweat pants and sweaters. A place where I am much more comfortable being.