What is “Homecoming?”

Homecoming subfeature

Homecoming is a traditional celebration at many U.S. and Canadian colleges, universities and high schools. It began in the early 20th century when universities began to invite their alumni to return to campus, or “come home,” to join current students in watching a particular athletic game, usually American football. Many of the oldest Homecoming traditions revolve around generating a sense of anticipation for the annual game and (hopefully) defeating an opponent.

Typically held in the middle of autumn, Homecoming involves a series of events over several days. Homecomings exist to celebrate the unique shared culture of the university and its sub-communities, host visiting community members who don’t have daily contact with campus, mark the passage of time, recognize and honor the accomplishments of community members, share good news, and connect or reconnect individuals to one another and the university itself. But each institution does this in a way tailored to the values and goals of the particular community.

Case Western Reserve University brings together a history of Homecoming traditions from each of its predecessor institutions and schools, as well as the traditions created within a single entity since federation in 1967. You will find the schedule includes both large all-university events as well as activities meant to be particularly significant to a subgroup. 

In true CWRU fashion, Homecoming has many opportunities to attend a lecture, hear about someone’s expertise, catch up on the latest thinking in a field and listen to stories of how ideas have developed. Sharing our passion for what we study and getting very excited about other people’s discoveries is something that ties us all together. Homecoming is also a time to celebrate CWRU, the people who make up CWRU, and meet new people that share a connection and appreciation for the university. It’s always easy to start a conversation with alumni because you already have something very important in common before you even meet: CWRU.

Homecoming is a special time of year! Plan to attend some events. You don’t need to attend everything, but try out a central event and maybe one of the smaller events. Just register. Join in. Celebrate.