IC history Photo

Commencement at IC

It is senior week at Ithaca College and we are getting ready for Commencement. Commencement has changed over the years, reflecting changes in the College’s campus, student body and also general cultural changes.

Commencement 1964 -- procession in DeWitt Park
Commencement 1964 — procession in DeWitt Park

During the years of the downtown campus, Commencement was held in one of the churches – St. Paul’s Methodist — or in one of the theatres — Strand or State. The academic procession wound through DeWitt Park on the way to the ceremony. (1964)

Baccalaureate procession, 1964
Baccalaureate procession, 1964

As the current campus on South Hill was being constructed, there were two transitional years, 1963 and 1964, when the Baccalaureate service was held in the Union (now Campus Center) and Commencement itself was held at St. Paul’s downtown. Where in the Union was there a space large enough for the graduating class and the faculty? As the current campus on South Hill was being constructed, there were two transitional years, 1963 and 1964, when the Baccalaureate service was held in the Union (now Campus Center) and Commencement itself was held at St. Paul’s downtown. Where in the Union was there a space large enough for the graduating class and the faculty?

1965 Commencement
1965 Commencement

Finally, in 1965, both Baccalaureate and Commencement were held on the South Hill campus. Commencement was held in the Hill Center, in the gym, and the Baccalaureate was held in the Union.

Commencement continued to be held in the gym until 1979, when it moved to the football field (now Butterfield Stadium). The Baccalaureate service transitioned to the Commencement Eve concert showcasing the talented ensembles from the School of Music.

As the student body grew, the tradition of having students walk across the stage and having their names read was dropped in favor of acknowledging them by school.

If you graduated from IC, what was your Commencement like? Where was it? Do you remember anything special about it?

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Cortaca Jug football!

The football rivalry between Ithaca College and SUNY Cortland goes back to 1959 when the team captains bought a jug.

Coach Butterfield with the Cortaca Jug, 1969
Coach Butterfield with the Cortaca Jug after the 1969 Ithaca victory.

The first game between Ithaca and Cortland that is reported in The Ithacan is in 1930, when the teams were the Ispies (for the Ithaca School of Physical Education or ISPE, one of the affiliated schools of the Ithaca Conservatory of Music and Affiliated Schools) and the Red for Cortland Normal. Cortland won, 12-0.

For an article in The Ithacan about the history of the Cortaca Jug and the 50th anniversary game, follow this link.

The Cortaca games have the highest attendance for any sporting events in Butterfield Stadium because of this longstanding rivalry between IC and Cortland.

Did you attend or play in a Cortaca  Jug game? What was it like in the stands or on the field?

 

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An outdoor pool? In Ithaca?

It is August in Ithaca. The outdoor pool is in daily use by students, faculty, staff and their families. Given the heat of this summer, an outdoor pool is a welcome opportunity to cool off and have fun in the sun. The pool was constructed in the early 1960’s (probably 1962) as part of the initial phase of campus.

Why, in an environment like ours, where swimming outside is chilly (or worse!) for the entire academic year, was an outdoor pool built so early? It turns out that the College leased the existing residence halls and the Union to a music camp for the summer and a pool was a requirement for that lease.

Men testing the water in the outdoor pool.
Spring Festival Water Football preliminaries, 1965

This photo was taken May 2, 1965 at the beginning of a game of water football that was part of the Spring Festival. Note that spectators are wearing jackets!

Did (Do) you swim in the outdoor pool? Were you on campus during the summer? What was it like?

Uncategorized

The South Hill Ski Slope!

Skiing on South Hill, 1964
Skiing on South Hill, 1964

In the early 1960’s, when the current Ithaca College campus was brand new, there was a ski slope on the eastern edge of campus. The arrangement included a tow rope system to haul skiers up the hill that was operated by an engine in a pickup truck and a little shack to shelter from the wind. It appears to have staffed and maintained by a student Ski Club. Because Ithaca winters are uneven, there were some years when the slope was never active and it appears to have been abandoned some time in the early 1970’s.

We have recently posted a new video about the Ski Slope.

Did you ski on campus? When was the last ski run down the hill? Or when was the first? What were winters like during your years at Ithaca College?

 

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Were you on the radio at Ithaca College?

Disc jockey in a radio studio
Disc jockey in an Ithaca College radio studio, 1958

Ithaca College has had a radio station since the late 1940’s. The first call letters were WITJ, later the station became WICB. The studios have moved over the last 60+ years — starting in the Little Theatre next to DeWitt Park, moving to the “Radio Workshop” on Court Street, then to the TV-R studio on Buffalo Street, then to Dillingham Center and now in Park.

Were you a DJ? An engineer? Other station personnel? Which studio did/do you work in? What was/is it like? What kind of program did/do you do?¬† Did/do you listen to IC’s radio on the air? Or did you work for the television station? What was your role? What was it like?

Do you have photos that you could share with us? This 1958 photo seems to be the most recent radio studio photo available.