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Monday, April 23, 2018

Staff Editorial

Aggie tries to change outdated tradition


Texas A&M is a university that prides itself on its traditions, many of which have existed with little change since the founding of their university. Samantha Ketcham, a senior at A&M, wants to radically change one of those traditions.

Ketcham is campaigning to become one of A&M’s senior yell leaders. Yell leaders have been a tradition at A&M for 105 years. As a third-generation Aggie, Ketcham seems to be an ideal candidate for the position. The only problem with her campaign is that A&M’s yell leaders have always been male.

Although female Aggies have run for the position in the past, they have never received enough votes to change the all-male tradition.

Ketcham told The Eagle that students at A&M should try to elect yell leaders that are representative of their student body.

“I think it would show the nation and the world that A&M is a more accepting place than people realize,” Ketcham said.

Even if Ketcham becomes the first female yell leader at A&M, this will be a tough sell.

While A&M is known for its traditions, it is also known for its lack of diversity. According to The Princeton Review, 70.88 percent of A&M’s student body is Caucasian; only 47.53 percent of A&M students are female.

In comparison, only 29.2 percent of UH’s student body is Caucasian, and 49.75 percent of our students are female.

The Princeton Review ranks A&M third on the list of colleges with the most conservative students and 10th on the list of the most LGBT-unfriendly colleges in the nation.

The election of Ketcham would be a step in the right direction for her university, but A&M still has a long way to go before it can prove to the nation that it is an accepting place.

Nevertheless, The Daily Cougar wishes Ketcham the best of luck in her pursuit to turn an outdated tradition on its head — change happens in baby steps.

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