Author: Sarah Jablon ’16
St. Mary’s College of Maryland ended its yearlong 175th anniversary celebration with a bang in November. A culminating week of events included fireworks over the St. Mary’s River, a celebratory luncheon, a performance by spoken word artist Clint Smith, and a performance by alumni band “Byzantine Top 40.” The week also included performances of “Crossroads: On Common Ground,” an original collaborative performance drawing from the stories of the communities whose histories intertwined at St. Mary’s.
In remarks during the celebratory luncheon, President Jordan said, “St. Mary’s College of Maryland is the perfect place to show the country how our community can come together… it is about inclusion. At the end of the day, it is really what WE did. That’s the St. Mary’s Way.” President Jordan’s remarks served in part as an ode to two events which occurred during the week: in the wake of tragedy, St. Mary’s students organized a candlelight vigil for the victims of the Paris attack and a march to stand in solidarity with the students of the University of Missouri.
Since its founding in 1840, St. Mary’s has stood through two World Wars. It has undergone expansion from a small female seminary to a four-year-coeducational college. It has thrived under the leadership of individuals like M. Adele France and May Russell, even in times when some doubted the school’s survival. But more importantly, it has been shaped by the students and faculty who call St. Mary’s home, to become a community which prides itself on inclusivity and diversity between people and thought.
As a senior at St. Mary’s College of Maryland, I feel grateful to have been a part of such a momentous year. There is more history wrapped up in the school and nearby Historic St. Mary’s City than students actually realize. The 175th anniversary celebration offered a chance to pull back the curtain, to show the community the foundation upon which St. Mary’s stands, through 175 proud years as the “monument school of the people.”
Here’s to 175 more.