The award is named after Walter Jerome Mathews, the first student to arrive on the campus of the N.C. College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts in 1889 (we chronicled Mathews’ arrival on campus in the commemorative 125th anniversary issue of NC State magazine). The Mathews Medal recognizes seniors who have made significant contributions to the university based on leadership and service.
Here are this year’s recipients:
Emily Tucker of Gaithersburg, Md. Tucker, a Park Scholar, served on the University Affairs committee as a student senator and founded the Reusable Regatta, a raft race to on Lake Raleigh to promote campus sustainability. She also chaired the Krispy Kreme Challenge and served as president of the Institute of Industrial Engineers.
Josh Privette of Wendell, N.C. Privette was transportation and campus safety chair in his time serving in the Alumni Association Student Ambassador Program. He also represented student interests in his time serving on the Physical Environment Standing committee, streamlining access to campus departments for students.
Andy Walsh of Pittsboro, N.C. Walsh served as student body president. He was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and served in the Alumni Association Student Ambassador Program, where he implemented the University’s Tradition Keepers program, known as The Brick. He also oversaw the Coaches’ Corner project aimed at celebrating NC State’s most beloved coaches.
Keynote speaker Vartan Gregorian, president of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, called the library “a Laboratory of human endeavor, a window to the future.” He said the library embodies the spirit of the Morrill Act, the legislation signed 150 years ago that created land-grant universities such as NC State. Gregorian, the former president of Brown University, praised the vision of Gov. Hunt and his support of education. “I salute you. Today is your day,” he said to Hunt, who sat on the front row with his family.
Chancellor Randy Woodson said the library on Centennial Campus is nothing like the libraries of the past. To those who haven’t been through its spaces, he said, “you’re in for a surprise.’’ Woodson added, “Today’s students need to interact across disciplines in creative ways….We created space for that to happen.’’
The library uses an automated bookBot retrieval system that allows storage of over a million volumes while freeing up more space for study areas. The group study rooms are each equipped with large-screen display monitors, and walls made of whiteboard are ready for students to write down equations and notes. A Teaching and Visualization Lab and Creativity Studio offers opportunities for simulation that can enhance teaching. And patrons can use technology such as 3-D printing. At the conclusion of the dedication, Woodson presented Gregorian with a 3-D printed version of the Hunt Library.
Andy Walsh addresses the audience at the dedication of the James B. Hunt Jr. Library.
Andy Walsh, student body president, spoke of the buzz among students about the building— saying it was a constant presence on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. He noted that more than 1,700 images of the library are online through the #myhuntlibrary campaign to collect photos of the library.
Pullen Hall had seen many different purposes carried out within its walls over the years as a campus landmark. The first men’s basketball game was played there in 1911. It had housed a dining hall, auditorium and library. The English and math departments has been based there.
“Since 1955, it had been home to the music department,” wrote Cherry Crayton ‘01, ‘03 MED , in a 2009 NC State magazine article about the fire. “But because of its age and mostly wooden construction, it was restricted to limited use.”
That age and wood gave way to a towering blaze on this day in 1965, when around 8,000 people watched in the night as Pullen Hall burn to the ground.
Firefighters fight the Pullen Hall blaze.
There had been a string of fires on campus that year. And on April 2, 18-year-old former student Vernon Dodd was arrested and charged with eight counts of unlawfully burning property. He went to trial a year later and pleaded guilty to five charges of willful and malicious burning of property, but not to the charge involving the Pullen fire, according to Crayton’s piece.
A new Pullen Hall went up on campus in 1987 and today houses student affairs offices.
Katharine Stinson was a teenager in 1932, a young woman with dreams of flying airplanes. She was working at the Raleigh airport when she got to meet her idol, Amelia Earhart, who was flying through the area for a promotional tour.
“I told Miss Earhart I wanted to be a pilot, but she said just being a pilot wouldn’t be enough to make a living,” Stinson said in a 1998 NC State magazine article. “She said I should study aeronautical engineering.”
Photo by Simon Griffiths. It originally appeared in the Spring 1998 issue of NC State magazine.
Stinson heeded her hero’s advice and came to NC State as a junior to study engineering. She was, in fact, the first woman to graduate from the university’s engineering program, in 1941.
Stinson went on in 1942 to become the first female engineer hired by the Civil Aeronautics Administration, today known as the Federal Aviation Administration. But over the years, different dates have been listed as her hiring date. University records indicate that Stinson was hired by the CAA on this day in 1942. (See Editor’s Note below)
Regardless of her exact hiring date, Stinson saw her work at the CAA as a way to fulfill her dream. “I never thought about the fact that I was the only woman, because I never saw any women,” she told NC State magazine in 1998. “That may sound funny, but I just wanted to be a good engineer.”
Stinson worked for the agency for more than three decades before retiring in 1973. She died in 2001.
Editor’s Note: Historical State, an online archive maintained by NCSU Libraries, cites today’s date in 1942 as the day Stinson was hired by the Civil Aeronautics Administration. Multiple sources suggest she was hired on an unspecified date in 1941. A clipping from the Feb. 1, 1942, issue of The News & Observer, though, has a photograph of Stinson seated in her office at the CAA building in Washington, D.C., indicating she had started work at the CAA before this day in 1942.
The winter edition of NC State magazine serves as a tribute to the 125th anniversary of NC State University. In researching the different stories in the magazine, from a tale of an athlete lost to history to the story of the first freshman class in 1889, we found a treasure trove of artifacts, pictures and documents that weave together an important tapestry of the university’s past.
We couldn’t include everything we found in the magazine, so we’ve compiled some of the more interesting finds and information for the blog as a way to look back just a little more. We hope you enjoy what we found.
S.M. Young and Walter Jerome Mathews were two of the longest living members of the Class of 1893. Young ran a hardware store in Raleigh for years, and Mathews was the first student to arrive on campus in 1889, a young man from Buncombe County, N.C., ready to study mechanics. He is remembered every year when the Alumni Association awards the Mathews Medal, the highest non-academic award given to students, in his honor. Below, they both stand with Chancellor John T. Caldwell in 1959.
From left to right: S.M. Young, Walter Jerome Mathews and John T. Caldwell.
Alexander Quarles Holladay was the first president of North Carolina College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts when the first 72 students arrived in 1889. He apparently stayed connected to some of the graduates in the Class of 1893, as we found a letter of recommendation for a job written for Louis T. Yarbrough. In the letter, dated August 16, 1895, Holladay lauds Yarbrough’s mathematical skills and knowledge of machinery.
Below is a photograph from a 1943 NC State College News issue. In it, some of the members of A&M’s first graduating class stand as they gather to celebrate their 50th anniversary in 1943. Joining six of the members in the photograph is Exum Taylor, one of the first African-Americans to set foot on the university’s campus. He’s listed in the photo as the first class’ valet when classes and lodging were both held in Main Building (now Holladay Hall).
Front row, from left to right: Mathews, Yarbrough and Young. Back row, from left to right, Taylor, unidentified, C.B. Williams and W.H. Turner.
A 1951 column by H.E.C. "Red Buck" Bryant.
A&M’s first freshman class produced men who pursued a variety of careers in engineering and agriculture. But it also held two future wordsmiths, neither of whom are listed in archives as graduates from A&M, who left their marks on the pages of newspapers around the state. H.E.C. “Red Buck” Bryant was a well-known columnist for the Charlotte Observer in addition to writing about politics in Washington, D.C., Boston, New York and Raleigh. Baxter Clegg Ashcraft was an editor for the Monroe Enquirer for 25 years before dying in 1922. Upon his death, the paper published his last editorial, seen below, which he wrote some time before he died to serve as a reflection on his life.
Ashcraft's last column, re-printed here in the News & Observer in 1922 after his death.
Former NC State swimmer Duncan Goodhew ‘79 will be in a comfortable place when the opening ceremonies of the 2012 Summer Olympics get under way on July 27 in London.
Goodhew, a London resident, won a gold medal for Great Britain in the 100m breaststroke at 1980 summer games in Moscow. We feature the former Wolfpacker in the summer issue ofNC State magazine, and he talks about his Olympic victory, how he’s translated it into a career as a motivational speaker and how his dyslexia motivated him to succeed.
Goodhew is serving as an ambassador for Great Britain’s Olympic team this year. Since the Olympics starts in two weeks, we thought our readers might like revisiting — or watching for the first time — his gold-medal swim from 1980. Enjoy!
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Thomas H. Stafford’s day begins at 8 a.m. and reaches past the limits of 5 p.m. to the uncertain realm of “whenever.” We tagged along with Stafford, who will retire in June, on one of his “non-routine” routine days for an article in the Spring 2012 issue of NC State magazine. Click here to watch and join Stafford along for the ride.
Also, Stafford’s office in Holladay Hall doubles as a museum of the artifacts he’s collected in his life. Click to watch him give a tour of his office and reflect on his interests.
We profiled a day in the life of Thomas H. Stafford Jr., who is retiring from his post as vice chancellor for student affairs in June, in our Spring 2012 issue of NC State magazine. We asked him to reflect on the places on campus that have become the most important to him during his tenure at NC State. Here are his six favorite spots:
1. Stafford is a walking encyclopedia of NC State history, and the place on campus that is most meaningful to him is the Memorial Bell Tower. He regularly gives tours, where he recounts the history of the landmark, something he hopes to continue in his retirement.
2. Holladay Hall not only houses his office, but it was the first building on campus. Stafford appreciates that symbolism and lines every tour group on the building’s steps to recreate a famous picture of NC State’s first freshman class, taken in the same spot in 1889.
3. The sports junkie in Stafford cherishes Reynolds Coliseum. The storied arena was the home to so many great memories, but he also appreciates it as the home to NC State women’s basketball and Kay Yow’s legacy.
4. One of the places he is most accessible is on his strolls through the Brickyard, where he chats with students.
Thompson Gymnasium in the 1920s. Photo Courtesy of NCSU Libraries.
5. Colleagues celebrate the vice chancellor’s eclectic tastes. He says his love for the arts has grown because of the plays he’s seen in University Theatre in Frank Thompson Hall. And he points out that in its previous life, Thompson Gymnasium was where “big-time college basketball started in the Southeast.”
6. While Stafford has overseen student affairs since 1983, many forget that he was a student himself when he attended graduate school at NC State in the mid-1960s. He and his wife, Judy, lived in Owen Residence Hall, which allowed married couples to live there. He might get in trouble at home if this one didn’t make the list.
With the weather starting to turn a bit cooler, we want to tap your memories of your days as a student at NC State for the Memories section of the winter issue of NC State magazine.
Raleigh is generally known for mild winters, but the NC State campus occasionally gets socked with a snowstorm. Sometimes that means being snowed in with no classes for days — or slogging through the mess to get to chemistry lab.
Share your memories of snow days at NC State, from an unusual snowman on the Brickyard to your favorite sledding spot. Leave your comments below or drop us a line at email@example.com. We’ll publish some of the comments in the winter issue of NC State magazine.
D.H. Hill Library, for anyone who has visited in recent years, is spilling over with technology. All the students have laptops, are listening to iPods or working with data on giant screens. Many of them are doing all of the above, and more, at the same time.
At first glance, it’s almost as if the books have been forgotten.
Of course, one only has to take a stroll through the stacks on several different floors to recognize that books still have great value at D.H. Hill.
Or, as we were able to do for the upcoming fall issue of NC State magazine, take a peek behind a door in the basement of D.H. Hill marked “Preservation.”
That is where D.H. Hill’s preservation team does the painstaking work of bookbinding. They are the people who save books that are falling apart from age and wear, restoring them so that they can be put back on the stacks and checked out by the next generation of NC State students and scholars.
Photo by Peter Hutson
So, if you get a chance, check out the next issue of NC State magazine to learn more about some old-school craftsmanship that is still being practiced amid a lot of new-school technology at NC State’s D.H. Hill Library.