Faculty dress: a critique

By John Reid

“What the hell is Craigie Hall?”

“Oh you know, it’s right beside Reeve Theatre, somewhere around the Education building.”

“Wait a minute. Are you telling me there’s a building called ‘Education?’ That’s the worst name I’ve ever heard. What do they think is going on in the rest of the buildings? And I’ve been here for four years and haven’t heard of any of those buildings. Pretty sure you’re full of shit.”

It’s September and I’m talking with my friend. She’s trying to tell me where Craigie Hall is so I could find my class there. I guess I haven’t explored the campus all that much, but I’ve never had any reason to venture to a building like Craigie Hall. Also, did you know we have a museum on campus? Yeah! Nickle Arts Museum, no bullshit.

Anyway, in order to make it over there I had to venture out of the niche I’ve built myself in Kinesiology and investigate buildings with names that tell nothing of what’s actually going on in the building. Kinesiology, Biological Sciences, Earth Sciences: good, strong names. There’s no grey area about what’s going on in those buildings, not like the shitmix of possibilities that accompany building names like Haskayne, CCIT, Scurfield or Murray Fraser Hall.

So here I am, taking my first trip around and I think it was somewhere between the MacKimmie Library Block and Professional Faculties (what goes on in Professional Faculties?) that I started to recognize a trend– slowly at first, but it became more and more apparent as I covered more buildings. Then my revelation: students dress according to their faculty! So that’s why I was getting stared at while walking through Haskayne with sweats, I knew my attempt at a masculine moustache wasn’t yet full enough to attract this much attention.

After my discovery, I started to notice more what’s going on every time I enter a new building on campus. Using these observations I’ve managed to compile a kind of summary of each faculty’s dress codes that should allow any student to fit into any faculty they find themselves in.


It hurts to make fun of my own faculty, but it’s just too easy. Seventy-five per cent of us just took this degree because we played sports in high school, but now are washed up and coming to realize the only thing it will do for us is get people to ask if we’re going to be gym teachers– a good way to waste 20 grand. The other 25 per cent are the brilliant ones going into medicine, physiotherapy, chiropractic or occupational therapy– the brilliant ones are easy to hate.

If you’re going to dress to fit in here, it’s pretty easy. Guys dress the same as girls and preparation consists of something like this: roll out of bed, throw on sweats, at least one article of Lulu Lemon and don’t do your hair– chances are you’ll be working out later. If you’re an athlete, then you’re required to wear your team’s jacket three days a week, with obnoxious big-jock-high-fives encouraged whenever possible.

Quote: “Hey bra, what kinda protein shake you got there? Vanilla? Sick, me too. K, see you at the Roadie on Sunday?”


Probably a fun group of people if you’re in the faculty, but there’s too much nerd stigma surrounding you guys to actually respect you. Walking through engineering is a more multicultural experience than the UN and is usually accompanied by an assault on your nose of ethnic foods, body odour, cheap beer and anxiety sweat.

Blending in around Schulich is easy. Just wear an enormous, oversized backpack to hold all your Bible— or Torah-, Tanakh-, whatever’s appropriate— sized books, a free T-shirt from your summer camp two years ago and walk around everywhere with terrible posture and a quick pace because you’re late for your extra thermodynamics tutorial. Girls don’t have to worry about a dress code because if there’s a girl in Schulich, she’s probably lost.

Quote: “Saturday night was awesome! We got wasted in my parent’s basement and pwned noobs on GOW2 all night!”


Science is a broad faculty. You can walk through Bio Sci, Earth Sci, Science A and B, Math Sci and ICT and never really get a feel for the faculty. One thing I do know, walking through the hallway between Bio and Math, it sounds like the comp sci guys have the sickest avatars in WOW. Wood elves mana skills are untouchable! I did see an unusually high number of U of C sweatshirts in this area so, if in doubt, I’d say sell out and buy one from the bookstore.

Quote: “Oh are you in pre-med? Weird, me too.”


This faculty is The Hills of the U of C. Good looking, rich parents and everyone is wearing HOLLISTER or ABERCROMBIE shirts with the brand name in gigantic letters on the front, just in case you didn’t catch it when you walked past the last three guys wearing the exact same shirt. I’ve never felt more hostility than I did while walking through Haskayne in my casual attire. I could be wrong, but I think one of the admission requirements for Haskayne is an oblique angle between your chin and throat that allows you to look down your nose at everyone else. I don’t know why everyone here has to dress so nice, apparently there’s a perpetual chance that Donald Trump is hiding behind every corner of Haskayne looking for the next CEO. Oddly enough, I have to say that walking among beautiful, dressed-up women that look at you like you’re a Toyota Tercel in a parking lot of BMWs is kind of a turn on.

Quote: “Did you see the guy Olivia brought to Candace’s cocktail party last night? Light wash denim? Eww.”

Social sciences

Anthropology? Urban studies? Linguistics? You can make degrees out of these courses? Weird. I thought they were just fillers for your schedule in fourth year, just like I think most of you are taking this as filler for an undergrad before you do something else. This faculty is the Sunday morning vomit of the university– there are a lot of different kinds of something in there, but none of it’s worth looking at too closely.

The dress code is as liberal as the programs, but there are a few consistencies. Try a Che Guevara T-shirt and loud plaid shirts or, if you’re really looking to get some friends, nothing screams social sciences like an Obama T-shirt. Just make sure your backpack has a coffee mug hanging by a carabineer, Mother Nature hates Styrofoam.

Quote: “Rise Against is totally selling out to big corporation, man.”

Communications and culture and humanities

I think you guys were all forced into university by an overbearing parent and then took the degree with the easiest requirements. East Asian studies? Religious studies? Spanish? Come on. I’d go into your dress code, but I dropped the Craigie Hall class so I never made it to where you guys “study.”

Fine arts

Does it match? If it does then you’re doing something wrong. Plaid and polka dots, red on orange on purple, that’s what you want to be rocking in the fine arts faculty. A good place to start is thick, black framed eyeglasses and a shoulder-slung hemp bag that you bartered for in Guam while finding yourself after high school. Just make sure to cover it with 10 or so buttons that you found at the garage sale in your neighbourhood. Now try a wacky headpiece like a fedora and sit at the front of the lecture hall using words like “transcend” or “benevolent” out of context. Essentially it’s all about looking unique and original, just like everyone else in the faculty.

Quote: “I peered into the winter of my discontent and in its name I found yours too (if it doesn’t make sense then you seem more misunderstood).”

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