If you want to fit in at Georgetown, you have to speak the language. And no, I’m not talking about Arabic or Spanish or Chinese — I’m talking about acronyms. So much more than collections of letters, they’re more like a way of life.
I’m talking more than the standard OMG, LOL here. From schools to clubs to buildings, our campus is full of acronyms. Some of them are fairly straightforward, like NSO, VCE and GUSA. While the B in MSB can stand for either “Business” or “Bros,” either way it wouldn’t be too hard for an outsider to figure out what you were talking about. ICC is another one of these. Although, since it’s the Bunn Intercultural Center, shouldn’t we refer to this building the BIC? A question for the ages.
But then we have a crop of more confusing acronyms. GUASFCU? The pronunciations of our dear credit union’s acronym vary. Some give it a hard C, while others say it with a Ch sound. And some people say the GUA- then resort to mumbling incoherent syllables. And since when does GUGS rhyme with jugs? There’s some linguistic trickery going on there.
Meanwhile, if you go on on Outdoor Ed trip, you’ll find yourself guided by a GOAT. While that might bring the farm animal to mind, it actually stands for Georgetown Outdoor Adventure Trainer.
But no one loves acronyms more than the SFS kids. Sentence-long majors can be shortened to a single syllable. It’s hard to find a class without an I stuck on the front of it.
So where does this appreciation for acronyms stem from? My guess is efficiency. Shortening everything to just a few letters makes it quicker and easier to communicate:
“I’ll meet you in the ICC at 4 to do our CPS homework,” is so much more convenient than “I shall make your acquaintance in the Bunn Intercultural Center at 4 o’clock, whereupon we shall convene with our Comparative Political Systems homework.” Maybe you would have kept your other words the same. The more formal language just felt appropriate. Acronyms keep it casual.
So look out for my new club at next year’s SAC fair — Georgetown University Arts and Crafts. GUAC. We’ll have plenty of glitter, and even more guacamole.
Stuff Georgetown Kids Like is our attempt to classify and understand, well, the stuff that students at Georgetown like. It is homage to Stuff White People Like, which we (though we are not all white) like.