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Is it okay to wear another college’s apparel?

Illustration: Madalyn Drewno – The Sentry

Be true to your school

Opinion by Amanda Blackman

It’s not unusual to see students wearing gear from colleges they do not attend. The act of doing so does nothing beneficial for the school’s community or the wearer’s reputation. When someone is wearing gear from an entirely different university, it comes across as disrespectful and takes away from school spirit. 

Colleges with a strong community have one thing in common: They all support each other. Whether on campus or off, wearing a school’s gear signifies a key part of the wearer’s personality. People who wear the same college’s gear can strengthen a university’s sense of community by their unspoken, shared passion. When wearing another school’s gear, an unspoken rivalry is created rather than a community. 

Wearing another school’s gear can come across as being ungrateful for the education being received. Some people may wear gear from a school that they did not get into. Or, this gear may have been free promotional material while the student was applying. It may just be a free shirt, but it implicitly tells others “I’d rather go here than be here with you people.” It can come across that the wearer is unappreciative of the education they have chosen to receive.

While my opponent will argue that another school’s gear might be worn to show support for a friend or family member, that train of thought is incorrect. Yes, people can be proud of their loved ones, but people who see a shirt that advertises another university will not instinctively think that the wearer’s best friend goes to that school. They could believe that the college they are both attending isn’t where the wearer wants to be. It can come across as an insult to those who enjoy attending the university, weakening their sense of community.

Choosing a college can be one of the biggest decisions of someone’s life. It’s something to be proud of, and that deserves recognition. When wearing a different school’s gear, all it does is signify dislike in the choice of attending the school. It weakens the sense of community and has no benefit to the wearer.

What people wear is their right

Opinion by Sarah McLaughlin

Why should it matter if someone is wearing another university’s apparel? People come from all over the country to go to different universities, so it isn’t uncommon to see people walking around campus wearing other college gear.

There are many reasons why someone would wear another university’s gear to the college they are attending. One of which is that they are a graduate student who is representing their alma mater. There is no shame in wearing the gear from a college one has personally graduated from. In fact, wearing their alma mater shows their own personal spirit for their school.    

Another reason why someone might wear another school’s apparel, is because their siblings or parents could have gone to that specific university. This could be because they want to support their family member’s school’s sports team or because they simply want to represent their family’s collegiate history. 

In many instances, some college gear could simply just be comfy. When walking around on campus, most of the time students just want to be comfortable. If their articles of clothing happen to have another school’s logo on it, then so be it. People aren’t just not going to wear an article of clothing because it isn’t representative of their university. Comfy clothing is comfy clothing, and it shouldn’t matter what logo is on it. 

More specifically, schools like CU Denver are alternative universities that don’t have any rival schools. Therefore, representing another school or another school’s sports team someone might like isn’t being disrespectful. For schools that share their campus with other universities, seeing other schools being represented is common. 

For commuter campuses like CU Denver, there can be some loss in a sense of community. But people don’t have to wear a school’s apparel to create a community. They could get involved through clubs or organizations. 

Overall, it shouldn’t matter what people wear to campus. What one chooses to wear on their body is their own personal right and choice. What gives someone the right to judge someone for wearing an article of clothing? 

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