Paradise on Earth - Norwich is a bit like that.

By Makayla Torrey

Norwich University students walking across the alumni bridge on campus.

You know the opening scene in Outer Banks where John B (Chase Stokes) is giving the audience the introduction to the Outer Banks? He says, “...the Outer Banks, Paradise on Earth, it’s the sort of place where you either have two jobs or two houses. Two tribes, one island.” Well, think of it this way: Norwich is a bit like that. It’s the sort of place where you have two jobs or two majors. Two tribes, the Corps and the civilians. One island: Norwich University.

Now, I can’t promise you that if you attend Norwich University, you’ll find a sunken boat and go treasure hunting (but if you do, let me know, I’d make a good Sarah Cameron), but the dynamic of it remains.

The Corps and the civilians are very different sides. One might argue that one has more freedom than the other or that one is better than the other. You’ll most likely hear that the civilian side is the “easy side,” to that I say, struggle isn’t a competition. But the point is, it’s very different, all the way down to the buildings.

As a civilian, I don’t have to wake up at a certain time. I don’t have to do physical fitness tests or attend trainings. I don’t have to wear a uniform. I don’t have to say “Good morning, Staff Sergeant (blank)” or “Good afternoon, Sergeant Major (blank).” Do I have to show respect? Always. Military ranking? Not so much. Whatever military obligation or Norwich obligation the Corps has, I don’t have to follow. I can experience college “the normal way,” to the best I can while also pulling over to the right side when the marching begins.

However, that doesn’t mean that the civilian side is purely civilian. For example, the guy who lives across from me is in the army. So a pogue can be a kook and a kook can be a pogue.

Difference isn’t a bad thing, and in a way, Norwich thrives on it.