for the universitys 175th anniversary celebration are
Historians could argue
that RITs first tuition was $5.
That was the annual
fee in 1829 for Rochester residents to hear lectures from some
of Americas best-known orators Oliver Wendell Holmes,
Horace Greeley and Ralph Waldo Emerson. The lectures were presented
by the Rochester Athenaeum, founded by a Revolutionary War veteran
and the citys namesake, Col. Nathaniel Rochester.
RIT dates to the Athenaeum
and later Mechanics Institute. Next year, RIT begins celebrating
its 175th anniversary with the May 2004 commencement. The commemoration
continues through the 2004-2005 academic year.
A planning committee
has begun to sketch out potential activities for the milestone,
building off the slogan RIT: Celebrating 175 years of Education,
Exploration and Innovation.
charge is to plan an anniversary year that celebrates RITs
past achievements, promotes its current success and highlights
its vision for the future, says Deborah Stendardi, associate
vice president for government and community relations and co-chair
of the planning committee. We want to engage the entire
university community as well as the external communities of which
we are part. We envision a variety of events that highlight RITs
significance as a university and as a community, national and
Potential events include
major speakers, time capsules, library and gallery exhibits and
alumni celebrations across the nation and around the world.
This is an opportunity
to enhance the sense of community and pride among the RIT family,
celebrate RITs accomplishments and build new traditions
for the future, says Fred Smith, secretary of the institute
and assistant to the president, who also co-chairs the planning
RITs last such
birthday party was the 150th anniversary in 1979. Here are some
of the highlights of that special year:
of President M. Richard Rose.
A Bob Hope show.
A Kenny Loggins
of a $42 million
capital campaign (By
comparison, RIT announced a $300 million campaign in September
cross-country run by RIT athletes who ran from the Pacific Ocean
to the Atlantic Ocean in 14 days.
The 175th will
be an equally memorable celebration, promise Stendardi and