It’s Still Different Here


Here at Cistercian, we have our clubs and our friend groups to hang out with during lunchtime or after school, but there’s something about a sporting event which brings out a different sense of community among Cistercian students. Everyone that attends the game is branded as a Hawk. You get to see a mass of high school students screaming their heads off, waving large flags, using extremely loud noisemakers, and getting flour in their eyes all for the sake of cheering on their team. Even when you actually walk into the crowd, and you realize that it’s hot, it’s crowded, and it’s filled with way too many people, it’s still quite infectious once the crowd starts cheering. Hearing someone spell out “CISTERCIAN PREPARATORY SCHOOL” somehow makes you want to repeat after them as well, even when it’s something as long as our school’s name. Sure, we all complain about random things that could be changed but when we see Cistercian take on another school, we’re ready to scream our heads off for our school.

Another great part of our football season doesn’t actually happen on the field. Our pep rallies, led by the Black Hand and accompanied by super awesome acrobatic cheerleaders, are integral to the football experience. The joy of watching enraged teenagers burn a stuffed sacrifice cannot be compared, or perhaps rivaled only by the joy of being crushed by a hundred people stronger than me as we all chant “I believe that we will win!” over and over. Those pep rallies, in my opinion, showcase what it truly means to be a part of Cistercian. The bond that we create with each other over Cistercian’s crushing workload is unbreakable, but cheering on the Hawks creates a different bond.
Being at a Cistercian football game is a unique experience. It’s something so unique that people are willing to spend over 2 hours outside when it’s 88 degrees and extremely humid, just so that they can cheer on their team or hang out with their friends. They could always do that inside when it isn’t hot and humid, but they choose to do so because of the atmosphere that a Cistercian game has.

It tells you something about Cistercian and our community when hundreds of people still show up to a football game and choose to get wet in the falling rain just to cheer on their team. It’s not everywhere that people decide to dress up in costumes and pay money to drive on a bus to the other side of town to cheer on their football team at an away game. Alumni return from college on their break and decide to come out and watch the Hawks play when they could be spending time with their family. We go to school in a very special place filled with people that actually care about supporting their fellow students, rain or shine, and that then come back to do it again even after they graduate. And then we have members of the faculty drive for an hour to a cross country meet of all places just to watch the students run.

Cistercian’s community is something that we’ve all grown accustomed to. What’s exciting for the first time may be tiresome now for those of you who have been going to football games and other events for a while. But it’s important to still make an effort to come out and support your friends and everyone at the school, even when the games don’t seem as exciting as they once did or if you think you have better things to do. We all have our differences with our classmates, and we all think that some of them are annoying. But that doesn’t matter, because at the end of the day, if there’s one thing that we all share as a part of the Cistercian student body, it’s that we are Hawks and that we believe that we will win.