By Megan Kenslea
Forget Dancing With the Stars – how about Dancing With the Students? Flash mobs have been popping up all around the world lately, so it’s no surprise that college students across the country are joining in on the craze. But not all flash mobs are created equal.
Here are the Top 5 College Flash Mob Videos that caught our attention and have that elusive “x-factor” that the rest just don’t have:
1. Ohio State University – Flash Mob at the Ohio Union
Two Ohio State University – Main Campus students, Jordan Davis and Luc Nutter, put together a unique flash mob to christen the school’s new student union last year. Students and staff dressed in Ohio State gear danced through the Union to Glee’s “Don’t Stop Believin’.” OSU President E. Gordon Gee even made a cameo at the end.
2. Furman University Flash Mob 2011
This April, Furman University students surprised picnickers at Falls Park in Greenville, South Carolina with a flash mob of nearly 200 people. The students, decked out in Furman purple-and-white, converged on the park, dancing to Cee-Lo’s “Forget You.” The Furman Paladin Mascot joined in, as did Furman University President Rob Smolla – who wore a tux! We also liked the students’ friendly play on the lyrics – they shouted “F.U.” for the school whenever Cee-Lo sung the words “Forget You.”
3. MIT 150 Flash Mob
Massachusetts Institute of Technology is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year with 150 days of celebration. At one event, the Open House this spring, with over 20,000 visitors present on campus, students organized a flash mob in the campus’s main lobby to surprise the visitors. The flash mob was comprised of undergraduate and graduate students, staff, and faculty – with a special appearance from University President Susan Hockfield and the school’s Beaver mascot.
“We recruited the skills from many corners of the student body and saw great enthusiasm from our peers,” said Shreya Dave, the student coordinator. This flash mob had it all: break dancing, high kicks, and even some students dancing on pedestals. The flash mob ended as the group of over 150 danced out of the lobby and onto busy Massachusetts Avenue.
4. Emerson College – ArtsEmerson Fraulein Maria Flash Mob
The new ArtsEmerson program at Emerson College kicked off the 2010 school year with a flash mob in the busy City Place food court in Boston early last September. For Rob Orchard, the Executive Director at ArtsEmerson, “there was no better way to celebrate our first performances, the Paramount Center’s opening and the collaboration between our office and Emerson students,” he said.
The flash mob was professionally choreographed, with more complicated dance moves than most flash mobs – which the Emerson students mastered with ease. Not only did the flash mob give “students a chance to work with Doug Elkins, a superb choreographer,” Orchard said, but also “highlighted the energy and enthusiasm of Emerson students in the heart of the Theatre District.”
5. Colgate University
After watching the clip of the Colgate University flash mob that took place this spring, we kind of wish we went to Colgate – if only so we could celebrate “Colgate Day,” a campus-wide tradition of celebrating each Friday the 13th with something out of the ordinary. This May 13 (you guessed it, a Friday), the university released a video of students performing a flash mob earlier in the spring. While members of the administration originated the idea and “got the ball rolling,” said Alison Kimble, the student coordinator, there was no lack of enthusiasm among the students: especially throughout the audience.
The cheers grew even more enthusiastic when the students were joined by the school’s Raider mascot, as well as the university’s president, Jeff Herbst. Kimble said the alumni response was just as positive: “Several alumni reached out to me and other dancers to tell us how much they enjoyed the video, and it made them miss their days” at Colgate.
Here are a few of our other favorites that didn’t quite make the cut, but are definitely worth watching: