Traditions at Russell Sage

Rally '06

Students "Get up and Moove"

Casey Deyo ’07—an intern in the Office of Communications, and sports editor of The Quill—reports on what traditions like Rally mean to today’s students.

Every Russell Sage College student knows about Rally—cleaning cans, painting banners, and acting silly are just a few things that make Rally so memorable. This year, Joan Messick and Dana Mainella, Overalls from the Purple Cow Class of 2006, encouraged students to “Get Up and Moove” for a great cause. Rally raised more than $1,000 for St. Jude Children’s Hospital.


Rally is about sharing time with friends and classmates, helping out the community large and small, and school spirit. Rally is the spirit of Russell Sage, and maybe that’s why Rally has been part of Sage since 1937.


“I believe that Rally is still alive after all of these years because the students believe in it,” said Aggie Stillman, Russell Sage archivist. “Rally means noise and laughter, creativity, fun, frustration, late nights and bleary eyes, charity, leadership and friendship, and memories, memories, memories.”


Rally is an opportunity for students to see themselves as forces of change. “To me, Rally is an opportunity for young women to see the difference they can make in their immediate community and in the world,” said Messick. “Rally is about bringing the community together,” said Danielle Jenkins ’07. “It is about making a name for Russell Sage as more than just a women’s college, but a women’s college of influence, where students are willing to help those in need.”


The first-year, sophomore, and junior classes built toy boxes for Gimmick. Seniors and faculty filled the boxes with educational toys and presented them to Troy’s Unity House, YWCA, and Sunnyside Center. Mainella was as moved as the recipients. “Dropping off the toy boxes and seeing the faces of the children light up just made my heart melt,” she said. “That is what Rally is all about.”


There isn’t one word to describe Rally— there are many: fun, charity, community, spirit, stress, work, memories, commitment, appreciation, Russell Sage. Each person’s Rally experience is different, but the feelings never change.


I am a Student at Russell Sage College

Once I visited Russell Sage College, I knew this was where I wanted to go—the campus is gorgeous. On my tour, I fell in love with every brownstone I entered. I remember walking into McMurray- Spicer-Gale House (MSG) with my mom and looking around the rooms that were used in the film Age of Innocence, thinking, “I want to live here someday.” My sophomore year, I did live in MSG!


Russell Sage College's historic campus and small classes attracted student Charlotte Hays


The small classes made me feel like I would receive personal attention and— feeling intimidated by lecture halls and the prospect of a professor not even knowing my name—personal attention was what I wanted. At Sage, I know most of my professors on a first name basis and feel comfortable turning to them for advice.

Many students are apprehensive about attending a women’s college. I hardly notice the difference. At first I was nervous I would be stereotyped, but now I see that stereotypes do not hold true. I am proud of the contributions that every student on our campus makes, and grateful for the opportunities we may not have received at a larger coeducational college.


I’m news editor of The Quill, cochair of the Ring Dinner, and a member of the Business and Communications Club and the Dance Ensemble. I've been involved in athletics through tennis and the Student Athletic Advisory Committee. I’ve traveled to conferences in Virginia and New York City. If I attended a larger institution, I may not have the opportunity to be involved in so many activities.


Russell Sage is not just a booklearned education, but a life-learned education. Russell Sage teaches us about community, leadership, friendship, and loyalty as part of our education. The experiences I’ve had and the relationships I have formed will stay with me throughout my life.


I am proud to say, “I am a student of Russell Sage College.”