Become a true Iowa Stater, learn the traditions of campus

Kelsey Roehrich

The Zodiac and Fountain of the Four Seasons:

If you enter though the north entrance of the Memorial Union you better watch your step. You will notice on the floor lies a large zodiac.

Rumors dating back to 1929 say that if you step on the Zodiac, you will fail your next exam.

If you happen to be careless one day you better have some loose change. If you throw a coin into the Fountain of the Four Seasons, right outside the north entrance, the curse will be lifted.


If you are on campus at midnight you may notice a plethora of couples around the Campanile.

This is due to a very old ISU tradition called “Campaniling.”

According to the tradition, a student is not considered a true Iowa Stater until he or she has been kissed under the Campanile at midnight.

Beardshear to Curtiss Run:

Midnight on Central Campus is not just for kissing. You will also notice a very strange phenomenon.

When the Campanile rings at midnight, you may see some figures running across Central Campus who appear to be naked. 

No, you are not imagining things, this is an old challenge that says you must run across Central Campus from Beardshear Hall to Curtiss Hall naked. You must make it across in the amount of time that it takes for the Campanile to ring 12 times.

Hit by a CyRide:

You will notice there are many buses passing through campus; these are CyRide buses.

Rumor has it that if a student at Iowa State were to accidentally get hit by a CyRide bus, that student would get free tuition.

If you ever hear someone saying this, please tell that person this is untrue. Iowa State does not need its students intentionally throwing themselves in front of buses for free tuition money.