Words by William Ton | @WilliamHTon
From the oldest, Morocco’s University of Al Quaraouiyine – founded in 859AD, to the wealthiest, Harvard University – worth $36.9 billion, university students and their institutions have long been attempting world records. But how many of those have actually been broken? Here are some weird, wacky and wonderful feats which have been conquered by tertiary champions.
It may seem like all fun and games to bounce around in a jumping castle, but in this case, a group of eight brothers from the Beta Theta Phi fraternity at Cornell University broke the world record for the Longest Marathon on a Bouncy Castle (team), jumping for a good cause.
The record was broken over three days, starting at 6:00pm on September 1, 2017 and concluding on September 3 after the team reached 50 hours. The record concluded the Beta Theta Phi event ‘Betas Bounce Against Sexual Violence’.
The previous record was held by Tuggerah Lakes Police in NSW, Australia at 43 hours, 25 minutes and 1 second, which they held since May 2015.
Now to India, where more than 25,000 Saveetha University students broke not one, but two world records for the most people in a CPR relay and the most people to complete CPR training in 24 hours in April 2016.
The record for the most people in a CPR relay involved 2,619 students who had to perform chest compressions for one minute, before the next person could take over. A delay of even a few seconds would have rendered the attempt invalid.
The second record for the highest amount of people to complete CPR training in 24 hours was broken by 28,015 students in a little over eight hours.
These attempts were organised by the university on World Health Day, to promote awareness and knowledge of cardiopulmonary resuscitation as part of their ‘Save a Life’ campaign.
Well, Newcastle University student Isaac Harding-Davis is the holder of two food-related records. The 21-year-old broke the world records for the most dumplings eaten in two minutes and the most ice cream eaten in a minute this year.
In February, Isaac pulverised 30 dumplings without drinking any water in a matter of two minutes, almost doubling the previous record of 18 at an eating contest in Sydney.
In July, on the Today Show, Isaac broke the record for the most ice cream eaten in one minute on International Ice Cream Day. Battling through the brain freeze, Isaac chowed down on a little over two tubs of Ben & Jerry’s ‘Strawberry Cheesecake’, which is equivalent to 806g of ice cream.
These records are all impressive, sure.
But did you know, RMIT has a (former) world record holder in its midst?
Dr Carol Tan, a Senior Lecturer in the School of Fashion and Textiles, broke the world record for the largest collection of cow memorabilia. She amassed a total of 3,320 cow-related items in her ‘Chateau De Moo’, which broke the Australian record in 2014 and the previous world record of 2,429 items in 2015. Her collection is worth over $20,000.
Dr Tan, who started collecting cattle paraphernalia at 17, revealed that she hadn’t seen an actual cow in real life until she was 20 years old and recalled the phrase that started it all;
“How now, brown cow.”
The record stood for a few months until it was broken by another cow collector in the US, who accumulated a total of 15,144 items of cow memorabilia.
By university standards, these records highlight the best of the best. As you head into the exam and holiday periods, why not attempt a few of these world records yourself? Who knows – maybe you could be the next big cow collector or dumpling destroyer.