1. Katie Couric
A staple on any University list of accomplished alumni, Katie Couric occasions U.Va. to stroll along the Lawn, remember her years at the University and occasionally make a cameo in Alderman Library. While Couric’s success gives me further proof that Alderman Library people are the best people, it also goes to show that even those with liberal arts degrees find high-paying jobs. As U.Va. as they come, a photo at Homecomings with Couric would produce at least 200 likes on Instagram.
2. The frat dad
He is most likely sporting a Vineyard Vines bow tie and checking out his old “stomping ground” at [insert fraternity here]. He will undoubtedly join the students on the Hill, despite the expensive seats he purchased front and center. While the frat dad might be a tad too old for Young Alumni Reunions, don’t be surprised if you see him out on Rugby Road on Saturday night. For the frat dad, his glory days are behind him and Homecomings is the one opportunity to relive them.
3. Tina Fey
The antithesis of Couric, Tina Fey embodies the counterculture — and gives us funny but normal looking people the hope we one day might be equally as appreciated. Let’s be real, Fey likely would never be spotted at Homecomings and definitely didn’t make her class donation to the Honor Committee. While her time at U.Va. may have been nontraditional and she might not constantly yearn for ‘dear old U.Va.,’ we proudly claim her as our own and pretend her four years in Charlottesville heavily contributed to her greatest hits on Saturday Night Live.
4. That hot guy from your seminar
You never learned his name and never moved beyond awkward eye contact across second floor Clemons, but Homecomings is your one opportunity to rekindle this deep romance. Imagine, five years from now, you can email your professor from your cozy house in the suburbs and share photos of your first child, affectionately named “American Political Tradition” after the course in which you first met. Even if you don’t fall in love, at least you can cry over the loss of second floor Clemons together.
5. Edgar Allan Poe
Rumor has it, despite his short residence at the University that we cannot ever seem to forget, every year on Homecomings Poe’s ghost returns to celebrate his Cavalier heritage. If you listen closely outside his Lawn room, you can even hear the beating of the “Tell-Tale Heart.” When the hour gets late, you’ll find his ghost twerking it out at his treasured namesake, Eddy’s on the Corner.
6. [Insert family member here]
Deep-seated with tradition and loyalty, many University students are bound to see an aunt, uncle, mom, dad, grandpa, grandma, cousin, etc. returning for the weekend festivities. For some, this may mean an uneventful game sitting in the stands with your parents and younger siblings instead of traipsing the Hill with your #squad in search of the perfect gameday photo op. If you’re lucky, this means you have dance partners for Young Alumni Reunions and stadium tailgates featuring free Take It Away and Bodo’s. Here’s to hoping you don’t run into the ‘fun aunt’ at Trinity later.
7. The cool elderly couple
Whether you admit it or not, the idea of returning to Homecomings 40 years later with your college significant other turned long-time spouse is almost cute enough to settle for that awkward guy you met on Love Connection. You’ll see them bright and early at Pancakes for Parkinson’s, because they’ve reached the stage in life where the morning isn’t meant for hitting snooze on the alarm 15 times. Since they went to U.Va., they’re probably both still beautiful, lacking wrinkles, incredibly successful and have a collection of equally beautiful, smart grandchildren that are now students on Grounds. They’re also probably University Guides.
8. The founders of Roots
Plot twist: they’re still here. While they might be a regular feature in the Charlottesville community, there’s no reason not to appreciate them on Homecomings too. Without the valiant efforts of these U.Va. alums, students everywhere would live lackluster lives, not knowing the wonders of the “El Jefe.” Don’t question it. That tiny bit of kale makes it a salad — they should know, they have a U.Va. degree.
9. The Philosophy TA who destroyed your GPA
To commemorate the destruction of your spirit, why not reconnect with that impossible TA from the class you took “for fun”? While it stung to get your first paper back with the comment, “lacking original thought,” there are no hard feelings, right? Hopefully, you’ve evolved enough to appreciate the abrupt end to your potential philosophy career — and the lifetime of dense reading and contemplation you narrowly dodged. If you were a philosophy graduate student, wouldn’t you need a way to get out your frustrations too?
10. A Virginia Tech fan
This unfortunate soul won’t be hard to spot sporting maroon and quite possibly camouflage in the sea of blue and orange. Following graduation, this hoo likely fell off the wagon and in with the wrong crowds. Like a car crash, it’s hard to look away from all the lost potential. Keep your fingers crossed that this hoo’s future children attend the University to rebel against dad’s hokie ways. While he may try to sway with the best of them during “The Good Old Song,” every other day of the week he’ll pull the classic, “I would like to be excluded from this narrative.”