‘T’ thefts strengthen skills, community

Many are concerned this semester by some students’ attitude that a ‘T’ still in possession of its sign must be in want of a new home in a student’s room. They inveigh against the debasement of the venerable tradition of daring Tech Tower ‘T’ thefts into petty acts of vandalism. Others have seen little merit in these freshly purloined letters beyond their maintenance of tradition. Still unspoken is the chief virtue of these disappearances, which greatly succor students and redound to our institution’s lasting benefit.

This salutary consequence is that this expansion of ‘T’ removal improves our students’ technical, risk management and organizational skills. Consider what students must leverage under pressure to pull off a heist of a ‘T.’ They must design an appropriate mechanism for removal of the targeted ‘T,’ coordinate their procedures, and proceed safely and discretely, all through teamwork. Students at this excellent educational institution seek opportunities to apply skills and demonstrate abilities in real-world situations. Removing T’s undoubtedly fulfills both.

Additionally, ‘T’ removal confers lasting benefits on the very institution whose signs are temporarily defaced. Out of love for it and regard for its traditions students steal T’s, and being able to forever carry a ‘T’ with them may very well foster that extra bond and fond memory that will cause them to lavishly support their alma mater as professionals, more than compensating for the cost and confusion caused by a missing T. Even if no money is forthcoming, alumni will be more inclined to speak fondly of their college days, which can only improve this school’s reputation.

If the administration and SGA do not accept the above arguments, they may instead co-opt the nascent movement with the following technique: host an annual “True T-Theft Night,” for which student teams scrupulously prepare to heist the T from Tech Tower. This should refocus students’ aspirations on the true T, provide skills currently practiced through illegitimate venues and create a more aesthetic campus. Participating students, having overcome the roof-sensors, cameras, fences, and other unannounced obstacles emplaced by the administration, will have one more practicum in their portfolios.

Moreover, they will have the experience necessary to abscond with scarlet letters from that campus in Athens. Ultimately, they will enter the workforce stronger and more prepared than ever before, and may it be to our institution’s greatness!


David Gibbs

BIO PhD student


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