OUR VIEW: Graduation Day is nearing
April 10, 2016
April is here and with it comes a date that’s been looming in the minds of seniors for months: April 30, graduation day.
Calendar pages are torn off and each day is marked with an X as we draw closer and closer to the day when members of the class of 2016 officially become alumni of Simpson College.
This graduating class went through a lot at Simpson. When we started our visits to campus as juniors and seniors in high school, there was still a C Street, an Art Building next to Mary Berry and a Brenton Student Center.
The class of 2016 saw some dark times for Simpson.
We dealt with weight rooms in the Catholic Church across town and the passage of multiple members of the college’s high-level administration. Faculty and staff were cut, tuition increased time and time again, the community suffered the loss of Coach Joe Blake.
But despite the low points and times of sadness, this graduating class also saw some of the best times at Simpson.
The fall of our freshman year brought the opening of the Kent Campus Center. Winter of sophomore year marked the completion of the Steven Johnson Fitness Center and the Cowles and Carse Hall renovations.
Former President John Byrd retired at the close of our first year and we helped welcome President Jay Simmons upon our return in August 2013.
Our campus adopted a gender-inclusive housing policy. Members of our graduating class helped a young speech and debate program advance to national champions through their own competition and mentorship of younger students.
We are leaving a much different Simpson College than when we arrived.
Another member of the administration is departing. There’s a Pedestrian Plaza in place of C Street and an increased campus admiration of the squirrel population.
As we leave Simpson, we hope the college will continue to improve where it can and keep in mind the interests of its students.