When was the Marietta College Alumni Association founded and what was its early history?
On July 28, 1841, a small group of alumni gathered in the Marietta College campus chapel and formed a three-person committee to draft a constitution for an organization of graduates. Erastus Adkins presided over this no-nonsense session and Samuel Hall was chosen to act as secretary. And, oh yes, they demanded that a constitution be presented in less than twenty-four hours!
Typical Marietta College graduates, they met the deadline and on July 29, 1841, the alumni association was officially formed.
By the way, the ledger containing the minutes from that first meeting is preserved in the Special Collections area of the Dawes Memorial Library and makes very interesting reading. Its leather binding is worn, but still holds the documents together much the same way that Adkins and Hall held their fellow graduates to a common purpose."to confirm and perpetuate the bond of union to which we recur with so many grateful recollections as having subsisted among us during our college courses and to transmit an organization having such objects in view to the succeeding alumni of our Alma Mater."
What is the story of the early days of the Association?
Up until 1860, the largest graduating class numbered sixteen students and the total number of graduates was 222. Most students were from Ohio with a number from Virginia and some from as far away as Massachusetts and Mississippi. From 1860 to 1885, the number of graduates totaled 333 and the annual meetings of the Association took place during Commencement. They were remarkably well attended with sometimes as many as 75-100 graduates making the journey back to their alma mater.
Marietta College's earliest alumni chapter or club was formed in Cincinnati in 1854 and was among the first of its kind in the United States. From that gathering it was resolved, "That we deem a social reunion of the alumni and former students of Marietta College pleasant and conducive to good feeling."
Similar chapters were formed in New York and Boston in 1902 and Columbus in 1904. Their annual gatherings were attended by officials of the College. The seventy-fifth anniversary of the College drew a large number of graduates back to Marietta for the celebration in June of 1910.
Fort Worth-Dallas followed in 1930 and upon the 100th anniversary of the Cincinnati chapter in December of 1954 more than 100 alumni, faculty and staff gathered in the Queen City to observe the milestone.
What other key dates are there in the history of the Association?
In 1945, the current system providing for a member of the Alumni Association to represent the interests of the constituency on the institution's Board of Trustees was reintroduced and survives to this day. Each year, a slate of nominees is put forward for a vote of all alumni with a total of five Alumni Trustees serving on the Board at any given time.
In 1977, the Alumni Association introduced its program of recognition for outstanding service, contributions and achievement that now includes the highest award bestowed by the Association to its members, induction into the Hall of Honor.
What does today's Alumni Association look like?
Counting more than 24,000 graduates among the ranks of living alumni, the Association works to promote the continued well-being and excellence of Marietta and its alumni. Membership is open to any graduate of the College, any person who has attended and completed one or more semesters or any person who has received an honorary degree from Marietta College or been named an Honorary Alumnus/a by the MCAA.
The interests of the MCAA are advanced by a Board of Directors numbering between fifteen and twenty-two members. The Board meets twice per year in an advisory capacity and offers significant input into such areas of concern as event planning, communications and outreach, student engagement and award recognition. The nomination process for the Board and the awards program is available online.
How can I remain involved with Marietta College even after graduation?
There are several ways for you to keep connected. The first and most immediate opportunity is to keep up to date on the Alumni Association web site. News, a calendar of events, an online community and important information on alumni services and programs are available to maintain that relationship with your alma mater!
Can I volunteer?
You certainly can! Two of the most exciting opportunities to stay connected involve the Career Center Mentoring Program and the Marietta Alumni Admission Program. Providing professional guidance to current undergraduates and representing the College at admissions fairs at various locations around the country draw upon the considerable talents of our alumni and are rewarding outlets for Pioneers wanting to find unique and significant ways to contribute.
For more information, visit the web site or call Linda Rhoads, (MAAP), at 1-800-331-7896 or Kathleen Powell, (Career Center), at 1-740-376-4645.
What is the Marietta Fund and how do I participate?
Many alumni choose to explore opportunities to support the College through participation in the Marietta Fund where their generous contributions assure those who follow you in the Long Blue Line benefit from an outstanding learning environment. Scholarships, financial aid, classroom equipment, laboratory supplies, academic programs, and student activities all depend upon alumni support for growth and development. At the appropriate time, you may wish to consider a gift to the Marietta Fund to make a difference in the live of current and future students.
What is the most important way to remain connected to MC?
Updating your contact information is vital. If you don't furnish us with your correct street and e-mail addresses and phone number, we can't include you on all sorts of exciting mailings such as the information for Homecoming. It also allows us to share your news and adventures with your classmates and fellow graduates. Please use the handy form provided in this brochure or call us at 1-800-274-4704. Better yet, e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org!
What is The Long Blue Line?
For some, it's the alternate name for the Alumni Association, but it's really much more. It's the idea that from the very first graduates who came together at the chapel in Marietta that sultry July day in 1841, there has been an unbroken continuation of support, interest and involvement from Marietta College graduates. It endures to this day and serves as a truly unique legacy of commitment and dedication ready to be carried on by future generations of MC alumni.
Take your place in The Long Blue Line.