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Polytechnic campus students dance through move-in

Sparky dancing with students

Elizabeth Raney from San Tan Valley, Arizona, is an 18-year-old freshman who will be studying education on the Polytechnic campus.

August 17, 2015

Editor's note: As ASU gears up for the start of classes this week, our reporters are spotlighting scenes around its campuses. To read more, click here.

Arizona State University’s Polytechnic campus has a 3-D printing lab, flight simulators and people who study the ability of algae to power society.

It also has an official dance called “The Whip,” which involves pushing a closed fist forward and swerving your body as you bring it back.

“It’s the Cha Cha Slide of our generation,” laughed Paige Berringer, a 20-year-old ASU student referencing the early 2000s dance craze. “It’s a regular thing here on Poly.”

Berringer broke into the dance, originated by teen pop singer Stilento, with Megan Lymer while the two were representing the residential hall association table at the registration inside the Cooley Ballroom.

The duo even coaxed Sparky into the action, teaching the Sun Devil mascot the dance’s finer points.

“We have more of a sense of community here,” Lymer said of the Polytechnic campus. “We all get along and we know where to go if we need anything. It’s fun.”

The ASU Polytechnic campus will welcome 600 new freshman and move in approximately 1,300 students by this Thursday. Naturally, the campus still retains a down-home feel.

Maroon and gold balloons tied to sandwich boards sit on almost every corner, which are manned by staff members and volunteers who wave at every passing vehicle and personally greet pedestrians. That friendliness goes a long way for 18-year-old freshman Elizabeth Raney, who admits to being shy and reserved.

“I’m not a party student,” said Raney, who graduated from San Tan Valley’s Poston Butte High School. “I’m looking forward to learning the skills to do what I want, which is teaching. I’m also looking forward to a little independence.”

Raney was accompanied by her mother, Ange, and her 14-year-old sister, Sarah. Ange said that she hoped the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College would help her daughter fulfill her dream of teaching kids with disabilities, but hinted that finding the freshman some new friends might not hurt.

“I would like to see her make some friends and participate,” Ange said. “She doesn’t need to befriend everybody on campus, but a tight-knit group would be nice.”

Maybe she’ll even learn The Whip.