Oglethorpe Day: A Beloved Tradition Grows

The Petrels of Fire Race ca. 2012

Oglethorpe Day is an annual celebration of Oglethorpe University’s namesake, and as Dean Michelle Hall puts it, a “pride-in-my-school-and-organizations day.”

And this year, there are numerous ways to show your school pride. Student organizations (and maybe even some staff and faculty) will be decorating shopping carts for the parade of shopping cart floats (contact Kendra Hunter for more details). And, to celebrate President Schall’s affinity for wacky socks, the Programming Board is sponsoring a sock decorating event today in The Petrel’s Nest. Then, at 12:45 p.m. tomorrow, on Wednesday, February 13, put on your craziest socks and head to the quad for the exhilarating annual Petrels of Fire race!

While the race usually begins at noon sharp, this year it will begin at 1:00 p.m., due to class scheduling… which doesn’t mean that the bell will only ring once! It will ring 12 times, and runners will race around the quad in hopes of arriving back before the last bell tolls. To my knowledge, no one has ever won this race—maybe you will be the first?

This year's Oglethorpe Day speaker: President Schall

After the race, a surprise guest (a local celebrity!) will lead attendees to Conant Performing Arts Center for the Oglethorpe Day annual address. This year’s speech will be delivered by our own President Schall on the topic of “Non nobis solum (not for ourselves alone): What is the Role of a University President in Liberal Society?”

“We have a very student-centered president,” said Dean Hall.  “Students know they are known and loved by their president…The theme (of his speech) will focus on how to make a difference, and that’s something we want all our students to think about.”

The occasion will include The Ogletones, our new a cappella group, and end with Oglethorpe’s Alma Mater and Fight Song (The Stormy Petrel March), courtesy of OU Winds and Singers. Attendees are then invited to enjoy Coke floats and peach cobbler and ice cream, all served in observance of the day’s Georgia theme.

“We’re building some more traditions into this tradition,” said Dean Hall, who went onto explain that the Presidents of other schools and organizations will be recognized during the event, and that the class with the most participants will win a prize. “Come if you want to support your class, if you are an athlete or the head of an organization… or if you just want to see what socks Dr. Schall is wearing.”

I know my curiosity has been piqued. Join us at Oglethorpe Day, this Wednesday, February 13th starting at 12:45 p.m. on the quad!

The Coca-Cola Foundation Awards $1 Million to OU for Scholarships

The Coca-Cola Foundation LogoThe Coca-Cola Foundation — the global philanthropic arm of The Coca-Cola Company – has awarded a $1 million grant to Oglethorpe University to establish the Coca-Cola Oglethorpe Scholars program.  The foundation recently announced grants to seventeen colleges and universities totaling $5 million as part of The Coca-Cola First Generation College Scholarship Program. Oglethorpe will award its first Coca-Cola scholarships during its annual competitive scholarship competition in January 2013.

“Oglethorpe has a longstanding tradition of providing a high-quality, hands-on liberal arts education to first-generation college students. In fact, nearly 35 percent of our students are first-generation, a rarity among the nation’s top liberal arts colleges,” said Dr. Lawrence Schall, president of Oglethorpe University.
“We are extremely grateful for Coca-Cola’s recognition of our service to these students and to the city of Atlanta through this very generous grant. Our new Coca-Cola Oglethorpe Scholars program will help 100 first-generation students learn to make a life, make a living, and make a difference.”
For nearly 100 years, the Coca-Cola Company and Oglethorpe University have shared strong ties to one another and to the city of Atlanta. The very first Coca-Cola bottler, John Thomas Lupton, was a great Oglethorpe benefactor for whom one of our signature buildings is named. Throughout the years, numerous Coca-Cola executives have served on Oglethorpe’s board of trustees, including current Oglethorpe board chairman Norm Findley, retired Executive Vice President for Coca-Cola Enterprises, and board member Ceree Eberly, Chief People Officer for the Coca-Cola Company. Coca-Cola CEO Muhtar Kent was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Oglethorpe in 2008.

Read the press release from the Coca-Cola Foundation

Download the OU press release (pdf)

‘Space on the Green’ Proves Physics is Fun

 

Mentos+Coca-Cola+fast reaction time: Louisa Barama '12 demonstrates.

Explosions could be heard across campus on Thursday as the Society of Physics Students turned Oglethorpe’s academic quadrangle into an outdoor science lab.  Students from all disciplines stopped by the quad to try their hand at a number of exciting physics experiments, some that included bursting soda bottles with Mentos candy, making dry ice “bombs,” and re-freezing ice cream with liquid nitrogren.  Check out some of the fun below!

OU students look on as Dr. John Cramer demonstrates to his students Newton's first law of motion, or the "Law of Inertia."

Watch out for dry ice bombs!

Ice cream, anyone?

Provost Dr. William Shropshire (center) gets a lesson in physics from Dr. Rulison and Dr. Cramer.

Painting Global Connections

Benedicto Ixtamer's works depict traditional Mayan culture, emphasizing the collaborative effort displayed in harvesting coffee beans.

During a journey to Guatemala, President Schall had the opportunity to meet and stay with the family of one of that country’s treasured artists—Benedicto Ixtamer.

Impressed by Benedicto’s captivating paintings of traditional Mayan life, Dr. Schall helped the artist to connect with the Coca-Cola Company, which was busy putting together an exhibition to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Now, the Mayan painter’s mural “Cooperativa de Cafe” graces the walls of their Atlanta global headquarters.

The 7’x9′ oil on canvas mural depicts the Mayan people working cooperatively in harvesting and processing coffee, a regional agricultural tradition. Proceeds from the sale of the mural support “Al Planeta un Pincelazo,” an organization that will facilitate the purchase of 4000 plants of coffee and 3000 trees.  The funds will also help support several young adults finish their education.

Benedicto, who still works  in the coffee plantation part-time, recalls joyfully picking coffee fruits with his brothers in his native Guatemala.  The artist, who began painting at the age of 13 with only three jars of paint, traveled to Atlanta to present the mural and stopped by Oglethorpe’s Hearst Hall to attend a reception in his honor,where he displayed and sold smaller works of art, quickly snapped up by attendees.

For more information about Benedicto Ixtamer’s work and Al Planeta un Pincelazo, visit http://www.benedictomayanartist.org/Bienvenidos.html