“Be yourself – as long as you dye your hair and get piercings to fit in”
For many Aggies around College Station, it is the most exciting part of the spring semester: new Fish Camp camps. Though times are becoming increasingly tough for applicants, the lucky few thousand who do get funneled into the rainbow tutu world of snapbacks and powerpoints are getting into the swing of their schedules being rocked by an intense load of hangouts, DP’s, Groupme explosions, and denim infused photoshoots.
As new counselors are being selected, it is also a time for freshmen to reflect on their experience last summer, and how it has affected their college experience so far.
“Fish camp changed my life,” freshman biology major Anne Williams said, “Coming into college, I loved my hair and my face, but Fish Camp helped me realize that four piercings and rainbow hair makes me so much more unique, and I love that I get to add to the growing diversity of this campus.”
“The feeling of belonging definitely changed my experience for the better,” said David Ericsson, a freshman history major, “I thought I had mastered inside jokes in middle school, but Fish Camp introduced me to a whole new world of exclusiveness of such depth that even I have a hard time following what my fellow counselors are saying.”
Fish Camp has been a favorite tradition at Texas A&M for thousands of students every year, and as the culture of Texas A&M changes, Fish Camp has no trouble keeping up.
Former Counselor and now Co-Chair Evelynn Perry said that she has seen tremendous growth in the Fish Camp trends over the years, from the increase in facial piercings to the expansion from highlights to full blown hair dye.
When asked if maybe there was concern that incoming freshmen might actually feel excluded by the intensity of Fish Camp, particularly the new piercings and colorings, counselors seemed a bit perplexed by the question. The philosophy behind altering one’s appearance and only being a Myers-Briggs ENFP personality type is designed to make everyone feel comfortable and included in a judgement free zone.
Though there have been whispers of possibly accepting introverts in coming years, Fish Camp will remain a rainbow of screaming and unintelligible chanting to any passerby. Fortunately, statistics lead us to be confident that at least 10 percent of freshmen will be comfortable in their skin at Lakeview this summer.