Students pledging for a fake club called Alpha Alpha Alpha could be spotted this past week doing things such as dragging an orange behind them on a floss-leash, or making animal noises as they entered and exited buildings.
AAA was created by Andrew Brown, sophomore international studies major from Carlsbad, N.M. and Jerry Polvadore, sophomore engineering major from Iowa Park, because they said they fancied the idea of pledging.
“I think we both just want to do weird things and not get ostracized,” Brown said. “We like the idea of doing the activities [the social clubs] do.”
Brown said pledging was originally only going to be two weeks, but might have to be extended due to the large number of students joining daily. The fake social club, that even made bids to accept pledges, currently has 34 pledges. The pledges include students who are already members of Pi Kappa, Alpha Kai Omega, GATA and Zeta Rho.
Both Polvadore and Brown said they never expected to get the reaction they did to their fake club.
“We thought it was the two of us being weird, and then people were asking to join,” Brown said.
Cara Buenz, junior social work major from Woodridge, Ill. and secretary of Alpha Kai Omega, said she decided to pledge because she likes the fact that it doesn’t have ACU set rules.
“Basically, I just wanted to see what ridiculous things he would try and make us do,” she said. “I just like any excuse to make a fool of myself with purpose.”
Buenz said that it’s interesting for her, as an officer of a club, to be pledging a fake club in the middle of helping with Alpha Kai’s pledging season.
“There are some people pledging my club that I’m supposed to have authority over, who I’m also pledging with in Alpha Alpha Alpha, which is an interesting dynamic,” Buenz said.
Katy Escott, junior secondary education major from Arlington, is pledging Alpha Kai Omega and AAA at the same time. She said there is a definite difference in the pledging styles of the two.
“In club, we have to do stuff that’s maybe weird, like wearing two watches, but it’s not outright totally outrageous,” Escott said of Alpha Kai’s pledging.
AAA, on the other hand, is pledging just to have fun.
“I feel like the stuff we are doing is for us to look stupid, and we’re choosing to be stupid,” Escott said.
Jenny Dudensing, junior accounting major from Rule, is not a member of an actual social club but is pledging AAA. She said the activities they do are a play on pledging.
“They’re obviously going, like, way over what normal pledges do but it’s funny because they’re just being stupid,” she said.
Each night, pledges receive instructions for the next day’s pledging activity and a picture showing them how to do it by email. Brown said the point of the ridiculous activities is just to have fun with other students.
“You have to get over yourself to do some of this stuff,” he said.
Pledges for the fake club are called “Energizers” and members will be called “Enforcers.” The club’s mascot is the Energizer bunny, playing off of the club’s initials “AAA”.
Brown and Polvadore said they are still deciding what will happen once pledging ends. Members will receive a shirt, and there may even be a Grub in the works.
Brown said the biggest lesson they’ve learned from the club is to have fun.
“Don’t take yourself seriously. If you’re in a group, it is okay to be weird,” Brown said.
Mark Jackson, director of Student Organizations and Programs, said Alpha Alpha Alpha is in no way connected to any of the established social clubs on campus.
“This isn’t endorsed by the university; this isn’t endorsed by Student Life,” Jackson said.
He said he is always open, however, to discussing the possibility of new clubs on campus.