The tradition of Senior-Sophomore grew out of the “Old Girl-New Girl” custom and the “Sheets and Pillow-Case Party.” Margaret French Class of 1899 wrote about these traditions in the June 1899 Wellesley publication Our Town. Dana Hall started in grade 10 until 1962 when the grade 9 became part of the Upper School. This tradition was a way to make the “New Girls,” the sophomores, feel welcome in the Upper School. Sister relationships were formed between the younger and older classmates.
Today the seniors, called snitzels (the origin of this word is unknown but first appeared in the 1963 Focus), randomly select a sophomore but keep their identity secret. The festivities begin when sophomores are greeted with personalized posters a few days preceding the tradition. These posters decorated with candy and treats are left in front of Waldo for the sophomores to find. The night before the tradition the snitzels decorate their sophomores’ lockers and Common Ground with candy, confetti, balloons, and streamers. The next morning the sophomores file into Beveridge and find their costumes, which have been designed and created by their unidentified senior. With the help from the seniors, the sophomores are dressed in their costumes and are given small fun tasks to perform,
such as singing a song or asking for a senior’s or faculty member’s signature. At the end of the day, the sophomores circle around the flagpole in Eastman Circle. The seniors hide behind their sophomores, whose eyes are closed. Seniors surprise the sophomores by cheering their class song loudly behind them. The seniors then reveal themselves to their sophomores and give their sophomores decorated beanies.
The event ends with a festive banquet and tradition cake. The sophomores present the seniors with their snitzel song and the seniors sing their snitzel song from their sophomore year. Afterwards, the whole school comes together for a Step-Sing and the sophomores wearing their beanies perform their snitzel song for the rest of the school.