St Andrews students to take part in virtual May Dip on Club Penguin

The tradition is still alive and kicking

Every year, May 1 is an important date in the St Andrews calendar. Usually, it means a night of partying until dawn before a chilly dip in the North Sea. This tradition is as important to students as Raisin weekend so it’s not surprising many students are eager to carry out the tradition, even while they are away from St Andrews.

The May Dip gives students the opportunity to wash away their academic sin in order to pass their May exams. Academic sin comes in a multitude of forms but the most common mistake students make is walking on the famous ‘PH’ outside the Quad. This is easily done so a lot of students will be desperate to take part in the dip this year. Thankfully, two events have been hosted virtually by organisations in St Andrews.

Nightline, the University’s anonymous, confidential and non-judgmental listening and information service has organised a virtual May Dip on Club Penguin. The event is to be held on the iceberg at 6pm BST to allow students scattered globally to take part in the tradition where “no submergence into a cold body of water is required”.

For the more method St Andrews students, Soaking for St Andrews organisers are encouraging students from all years, wherever they are around the world to get totally soaked whatever way they can and share their footage on social media. The Soaking for St Andrews team are not only looking to keep alive the May Dip tradition, but also the Senior Soaking tradition, where final year students are drenched following their final exam.

The Fellowship of St Andrews is behind the Soaking for St Andrews campaign. They are using the platform to raise money for the University Community Fund which is providing aid to students and the local community still in St Andrews.

A second-year student noted how “special” it is to be able to continue this tradition during lockdown. “It really is one of the highlights of the second semester and relieves a lot of exam anxiety because you have cleansed yourself of all the academic sin you gained throughout the year”.

A first-year student also said: “It’s really good that an effort has been made to continue the May Dip even though we aren’t all actually there. Coming to St Andrews you hear a lot about the traditions and it really makes you want to take part, so having that taken away felt like I was missing a lot of the unique St Andrews experience in my first year.” While the student commented “it’s not quite the same as actually doing it”, they did appreciate “the work put into uniting all of the St Andrews students for this tradition”.

Students still residing in St Andrews are advised not to enter the North Sea on May 1 as per recommendations from the Principle, local authorities and NHS.