Not only was this year’s homecoming a welcome return, it was also a limited one. Much to the surprise of many, events on campus like the pep rally allowed for only so many students and alumni to participate.
As the Gaither gymnasium began to fill up with rowdy students and alumni, event security began closing the doors. In a matter of time, a crowd outside began to form and demanded to be let in.
Lenorra Rone, the business manager for FAMU Elite Dance Squad, had difficulty getting inside even after she tried explaining she had a performer with her.
“As I was walking up, I saw a big crowd in the entrance and at the exit and I was trying to figure out what was the hold up and why we couldn’t get in,” Rone said. “People were leaving as they weren’t letting anyone in so if it’s at max capacity and people are leaving, why can’t we get in? I was showing the officer that I was a part of FAMU Elite Dance Squad and I had a dancer with me and they were about to perform and he was not having it. I asked him to talk to the head officer in charge and he was just like they said no.”
SGA Senator Iman Goodman says the limited capacity was enforced to follow COVID-19 restrictions, but that it resulted in students sneaking inside the gymnasium.
“Due to COVID-19, there are a lot of restrictions,” Goodman said. “Being that people’s parents were in town, especially alumni, it was kind of hard to get all of the students inside of the gymnasium. Students were sneaking in from the back so it was kind of hard but the pep rally was a good turnout.”
Some students had to face missing out on events due to the limited capacities. Second year student Sydnee Mykel says the events could have been planned better.
“The limited capacity events made me feel like I couldn’t get the full homecoming experience,” Mykel said. “I feel like FAMU could’ve planned better and had the events in a bigger setting to accommodate everyone. The way they were not letting people in came off as disrespectful. They don’t even try to listen to concerns, especially to those who needed to get in there for different reasons.”
Students are also reacting to next month’s limited capacity graduation. Students are allotted only four tickets to invite friends and family to commencement. Rattlers are scratching their heads at the fact that football games are occurring at full capacity but there is still a limited ticket admission for the next month’s commencement.
“If FAMU can allow over 31,000 people to the game, then they should allow us to invite more people for graduation,” Twitter user Kent killmonger said.