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The Knox Student

Student Read, Student Written, Student Led Since 1878

The Knox Student

Student Read, Student Written, Student Led Since 1878

The Knox Student

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April 15, 2024

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Student committee plans to bring back Flunk Day tradition this year


Students participating in Flunk Day activities in 2019. (TKS Archives)

Students participating in Flunk Day activities in 2019. (TKS Archives)

While members of the committee know that this Flunk Day won’t be “normal,” they plan to remind students of traditional Flunk Days while keeping safety in mind.

As per Knox tradition, Flunk Day season has made its way again. Now with COVID protocols in place, the student Flunk Day planners are preparing for a return of tradition while also maintaining guidelines and keeping the community safe. 

As a member of the student planning committee, senior Maddie Tucker wants to remind students that while this year is not going to be a “normal” flunk day, it will be an interpretation of each suggested modification. Tucker joins seniors Kathryn Allee and Caitlin Edelmuth to create the student committee. They all agreed to keep most aspects of the event a secret, but in planning this year’s Flunk Day, they were clear on their intention to bring a day “as close to normal as possible” while still being safe. 

“I don’t want to give away too much… but yes, students can expect to see a return of some Flunk Day classics! We’ve had to modify some things, but the planning committee is confident that this day will still be a hit across campus,” said Tucker. 

To keep Flunk Day accessible for students who are off-campus, there will be two Flunk Days—one virtual and one in-person. Tucker mentions feeling just as excited about the virtual events lined up as the events that are happening in person. 

Tucker also mentions feeling proud of the adjustments the committee, with the help of the Student Engagement Coordinator Raina Johnson, has been able to make this year. Looking back at Flunk Week 2020, Tucker mentions feeling like great strides have been made in hosting events. 

“It’s been a really strange year! I recall participating in Flunk Week last year, knowing that I was going to be this year’s coordinator, and just feeling an overwhelming sense of worry about the uncertainty ahead,” Tucker said. “While it may look different than what our upperclassmen remember from years past, everything we’ve planned has a COVID-19 safety stamp of approval.”

With two years of Flunk day tragedies in a row—2019’s “Thunder Flunk” and 2020’s Virtual Flunk Week—the student committee has considered as many “worst-case scenarios” as they could. While they are hoping for positive weather and outdoor events this year, they have contingency plans for bad weather with safety concerns.

“Of course, we’re all hoping for a beautiful spring day, but if Mother Nature decides otherwise, we’ll adapt. What is 2021 if not a year of learning to be quick on our feet?” said Tucker. 

While they can consider all possible contingencies for Flunk Day, they are also relying on students to prepare themselves by making themselves aware of COVID policies and holding each other accountable. 

“We are also relying on students to be responsible and look out for each other by wearing masks and physically distancing,” said Edelmuth. “Please take care of yourself and the community, we rely on your good judgment and safe practices to keep everyone safe, happy, and healthy.”

Other things to expect this year include a variety of outdoor vendors coming throughout the day, making food available to students on and off dining plans. Unlike years past, this year the Flunk planners aren’t revealing a specific theme until the day of Flunk Day, but Edelmuth encourages students to keep an eye out on social media for hints. This includes Allee’s, Edelmuth’s and Tucker’s personal social media, along with the Union Board Instagram, the Wikifire. 

Also, back up this year is the Flunk Day Hotline. Dial (309) 341-8008 and a message will be played informing you whether it is Flunk Day or not. This is also a place to find potential hints for the Flunk Day theme, and the Wikifire encourages students to “check daily.”

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