Tucked away within the heart of the picturesque trees of northeastern Connecticut sits the 140-year-old rural University of Connecticut, or UCONN. Over 27,000 students, both undergraduate and graduate, call UCONN their home and cheer for the Huskies. UCONN is affiliated with Division 1 of the NCAA and is an affiliate of the Big East Conference, which also competes in the NCAA. The main campus is located in Storrs, Connecticut, a small college town with few other inhabitants besides those residing on UCONN’s campus. The town of Storrs is named after the brothers who were instrumental in the founding of UCONN, Charles and Augustus Storrs. The Storrs Brothers were both born in Mansfield, Connecticut, just minutes south of downtown Storrs, and they both offered to donate land for the establishment of UCONN in 1880. In 1881, the donation was accepted and the Storrs Agricultural School, now UCONN, was established by an act of the Connecticut General Assembly.
Since the school’s founding, it has grown significantly. Agriculture still plays a heavy role in academics at UCONN, with many undergraduate students majoring in agricultural sciences; however, general economics, allied health sciences, nursing, and psychology are also among the top majors chosen at UCONN. The school also has a notable presence in Women’s Basketball, considering they have won 11 Division 1 championships since 1982. In New England, it is commonplace to see out-of-state students from Massachusetts, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. Although, it is most unusual when a student from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, a city almost 1,600 miles from UCONN, applies, is accepted, and physically travels to Connecticut to attend college.
Adam Hughes (’18) is precisely that student, who, in his time at UCONN, has been majoring in allied health sciences, with a penchant for law school. According to him, the experience is amazing, and he said, “Meeting so many different people from the rest of the country is fun and a great learning experience for me.” Adam is particularly interested in history, whether it be American, European, or World, and he has “enjoyed the chance to travel through revolutionary America in Boston, New York City, and Philadelphia.” Due to his close proximity to each of those three cities, it would be odd not to visit each of these astonishing and very historic locations. His freshman year was a blast, according to him, because he “found a great roommate, joined Beta Theta Pi, and met his girlfriend.” Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic put a damper on his sophomore and junior year of college; however, Adam plans to return to campus with a smile for his senior year this year, and he is very excited to get along with his studies.
If you were to drive south down the main road toward the campus, you would see the cows that reside near the UCONN Dairy Barn. The cows of UCONN are a large part of academic life and student life at UCONN. Those cows provide the milk for the UCONN Dairy Bar, which produces some of the “best ice cream ever made,” according to Adam. It is also a tradition to head over to restaurants such as Sgt. Pepperoni, Wings Over, and Ted’s Restaurant, which are some of the regular haunts of UCONN students who just want to meet up someplace, eat some great food, or catch a sports game.
Greek life, as with many universities, is prominent at UCONN, with over thirty chapters of fraternities and sororities and over 2,700 members. As previously stated, Adam is an active member of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity, and, as the Pledge Educator, he works closely with the new pledges each semester and provides them with a taste of what it is like to be a member of Beta Theta Pi. From August 6th through the 8th, Adam served as the delegate from the University of Connecticut to the National Beta Theta Pi Convention in Oxford, Ohio. While they were there, delegates from across the nation participated in activities and meetings, complete with Robert’s rules of order and many discussions involving the future of the fraternity. In fact, during the trip Adam, met up and reminisced with a friend and fellow Casady alum, Sam Atkinson (’18), who served as the delegate from the University of Oklahoma.
College is a trying time for many people. The realities and tribulations of adult life are becoming ever so closer as you maneuver through academics, athletics, and social life. In Adam’s case, however, he feels confident in his future, and he is determined to pursue his dreams. According to him, “UCONN, and especially my girlfriend, have helped me become a better person to say the least.” As senior year creeps upon him, Adam is ready to take on the semester with grit and fortitude, the Casady way.