A campus wide birthday bash was held to celebrate SRU’s 125th anniversary. If students and faculty were observing the happenings on campus this Wednesday, they may have noticed the plethora of green and white balloons around the Smith Student Center. Some may have even ventured inside, to discover the greatest part of all birthdays: free food.
This Birthday Bash was held for none other than Slippery Rock University. It turned 125 years young this week.
The Green and White Society president, and special education and early childhood education major Katie Hill helped run the Birthday Bash. Some of the companies and organizations she and her fellow G&W members collaborated with for this event included The Grove apartment complex, SGA, and the Association of Residence Hall Students (ARHS). AVI provided the food, which included soft pretzels, cupcakes, and cake.
Criminology major Kelsi Dobran, 21, is an ambassador for the Green and White Society. She explained that SRU’s president, Dr. Cheryl Norton, and Dr. Robert Watson would both be giving small speeches at the Bash.
Dr. Norton became the university’s first female president, after taking the position in 2012. Dr. Watson is the interim vice president for student affairs, and is a descendant of one of SRU’s very first founders. He also happens to be the author of “Slippery Rock University: The Legend Behind the Name.”
Earlier on that morning was the Founder’s Day Ceremony, held in the Alumni House. Dr. Watson spoke on the history of Slippery Rock University and how it was founded in 1887.
According to Watson, the foundations of the university began when citizens gathered to discuss the possibility of creating a higher education opportunity for their children. The names of these families are now names we recognize near and around campus today, such as Kiester, Miller, and Patterson. Beginning with just 168 students and three buildings, SRU’s campus has grown to accommodate almost 9,000 students.
About 20 families, who all collaborated to purchase 197.75 shares of stock, did the work. Over time, Main Street added another road off of it, one we know today as Morrow Way. The first dorms built, North and South (now Rhoads) Hall, had carpets and bedding hand-sewn by the local women.
At the Birthday Bash for SRU, Watson spoke about the preparation of the day.
“I want to give full credit to the students” he said. “The Green and White Society put together the whole event. I simply pulled strings when necessary, and helped them out whenever they needed me.”
It was also made known that everyone attending was to wear green and white, to honor our university’s colors. A picture taken on the first floor of the Smith Center displayed everyone’s eagerness to participate in wearing green and white.
The amount of effort put into the ceremonies and events on Wednesday was extremely apparent, from the decorations on a sign outside the Smith Center, to the giant, elaborate tray of 125 cupcakes. SRU students of all different organizations came together to provide a wonderful celebration.