A half century of change
Monday, April 4, 2005
When members of the class of ‘54 celebrated their 50-year reunion last fall, they came back to a very different campus.
In the mid-50s they came to learn teaching, liberal arts or business at St. Cloud State Teachers College.
Some of the obvious changes that have taken place on campus over the years:
- Many more students: In 1950 there were just
1,700 students; now there are more than 15,600 enrolled.
- More buildings: Stewart Hall was just a year old and
Kiehle Visual Arts Center opened when they started here,
but 24 other buildings, the library and the new stadium have
been added since then.
- Rules and customs: Back when they were on campus,
a young man visiting a “coed’s” dorm could only wait in
the front parlor, and if a young lady was brought back after
curfew, she was likely to be campused by the dorm mother
for her infraction. Now of course there are no curfews and
men and women are free to visit all floors.
- International students: Reunion-goers were reminded
that while they were here one of our first students from a
foreign country, Razak Danmole, enrolled. The young man
from Nigeria arrived at the St. Cloud bus depot with ten cents
in his pocket and no overcoat, but faculty and students soon
made him feel welcome. Today we have more than 800
students from 85 different countries mingling with students
from Minnesota and across the nation.
- Graduate degrees: During their junior year we won
approval to add the school’s first master’s degree program.
Currently we offer more than 50 graduate-level programs.
- Entertainment: Swimming across the icy Mississippi River
became a springtime craze for SCSU students in 1952 after
Charles Everhard (known as “Great John L”) braved the frigid
waters. Each year after the ice melted, a new daredevil
greased like a channel swimmer would carry on the tradition
A mid-1970s near-drowning ended the practice.
- Student organizations: The Vets Club and the Married
Couples Club were big groups on campus in the post-war
years. Now there are more than 200 academic, governmental
and social organizations for friendship, leadership andvolunteer opportunities.
Alumni were also reminded that some things about the college experience here haven’t changed. Our students still come here – just as they did – to grow and develop into adults ready to go out on their own. They come to experiment and explore, to discover new ways of thinking, learning, and studying, and to make lifelong friendships.
<< Previous | Contents | Next >>