UBC Traditions

Diego Lozano
Diego Lozano

“My favourite tradition at UBC is not having enough time to get between classes.”

­— Nathaniel Andre-Peirano

Storm the Wall

UBC is all about challenging yourself with rigorous education so that you can get a better job, a better place and a better life. There’s no better metaphor for that whole experience than having to swim, run, bike and hurl yourself at a 12-foot-tall wall, praying that you’ll be able to pull yourself up. Don’t worry too much about that though, the UBC Rec staff’s whole job is to make sure you don’t fall.

Defacing the Engineers’ Cairn

The Cairn is basically the main character on campus at this point. It’s the concrete E on Main Mall that engineering students are sworn to defend with their life. It gets painted for all kinds of reasons: advertising parties, commemorating important events, promoting causes and furthering faculty rivalries. The best time to paint it is at night, but you didn’t hear that from us.

Polar Bear Swim

This event happens on the last day of term one classes, and it is a great way to release all that academic tension before exams start. This is not a tradition for everyone, but it is definitely an experience. So why not put on your swimsuit and embrace the cold waters of Wreck Beach with your wild peers?

Day of the Longboat

The Day of the Longboat is a classic tradition, dating back to at least the mid-’80s. This event takes place in early fall semester and is a good time if you really like paddling hard and being on the water.

Pit Night

What’s better than an 8:30 class on Thursday morning? Showing up brutally hungover to an 8:30 class on Thursday morning. Pit Nights happen every Wednesday night and have been happening online since the pandemic started. Obviously, you have to be over 19 to attend in person — but if you want to simulate the feeling, just play loud music and dance in your shower to replicate how sweaty you would get.

“My favourite tradition at UBC is not having enough time to get between classes.”

­— Nathaniel Andre-Peirano
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