Taylor University is a place rich with legacies and traditions, one being legacy students.
While each student on campus has their own experiences and adventures both at Taylor and elsewhere, these legacy students carry a connection to Taylor that they’ve had their whole lives.
Legacy students are students whose parents (and even grandparents, in some cases) attended Taylor University.
With the second largest incoming class in Taylor’s history, there is no shortage of freshmen, some of whom have strong family connections to Taylor even beyond parents and siblings. These freshmen legacy students have taken up the torch and now are able to experience for themselves what they’ve heard about their whole lives.
Some of these legacy students live in the same residence hall, on the same wing or even in the same room as their parents once lived.
Freshman Emma Frizzell lives on Second Center Olson, which is where her mother lived while she was a Taylor student. Both her mother and father attended Taylor, as well as her aunt and uncle.
While Frizzell’s parents wanted her to visit Taylor to see what it was like, they did encourage her to find a school she felt she wanted to go to. Frizzell visited Taylor University during her junior year of high school.
Along with a tour of Taylor, Frizzell heard many stories about what Taylor life was like from her parents. This gave her confidence that she would enjoy attending Taylor.
When Frizzell was assigned her room in Olson, she and her mother tried to figure out which wing she would be living on.
“When we came for orientation, she was like, ‘Emma, this is literally right across the hall from my old dorm room,’” Frizzell said.
Frizzell finds it special to think that from the door of her own room, she is able to look across the hall and see the room where her mother stayed.
Frizzell said that sometimes when she is walking around campus, she wonders if her parents were in the same place at some point.
“It’s cool living where my Mom lived when she was at school,” Frizzell said.
Freshman Michael Hoover from First West Wengatz also grew up hearing about Taylor. Like Frizzell, both of his parents were Taylor graduates. Hoover’s father lived in Wengatz Hall while his mother lived in English Hall.
Hoover has many connections to Taylor, one being that his mother and father were part of Inter-Class Council (ICC). Hoover himself was recently elected as the President of the Class of 2026 ICC group.
But before coming to Taylor, his parents brought him to many Homecoming weekends at Taylor, and he grew up meeting many of his parents’ friends from Taylor, both while visiting campus and on vacations.
“Growing up in that environment and being like, ‘Wow, these are some awesome friends that they made at Taylor,’ I want that,” Hoover said.
Hoover’s family connection to his residence hall is close. So close, in fact, that he lives in the exact same room that his father lived in when he lived on First West Wengatz.
Hoover has been able to participate in some of the First West Wengatz traditions that he had been told about by his father, and he said that being able to experience it for himself was really fun.
“It’s so fun, I mean, just being able to think, ‘This is the same room that my Dad was in,’” Hoover said. “It’s really cool and I feel connected to him in a different sort of way. So that’s really, that’s really special.”
Having grown up hearing his father’s stories about wing traditions, conversations and incidents, Hoover finds that now he is better able to see from his father’s perspective and remember those stories in a new light.
There is a particular instance he hopes won’t happen to him as it did for his father.
“He would always talk about how ‘Oh, yeah, I was right across from the bathroom and sometimes it would flood’ and it would go right into his room,” Hoover said. “And so I’m like, ‘I’m right here, right across from the bathroom, I hope it doesn’t flood.’”
On the bright side, Hoover said that these stories make him feel connected to his father in a special way.
These adventures, whether they be as simple and precious as looking across the hall at a parent’s old room or as exciting as a potential bathroom disaster, are only snapshots of the legacies and memories that are made every day at Taylor University.
Many very important memories made at college involve friends and the relationships that continue even after graduation. Hoover, like many students, is excited to make these deep connections with people.
“I’m really looking forward [...] (to) getting to know a bunch of people at Taylor and form these really strong connections that will last a lifetime,” Hoover said.
Taylor University is home to many wonderful students, but for these freshmen legacies, their legacy adventure at Taylor is just beginning.