March 30, 2010, will mark the 100th anniversary of the legislative founding of The University of Southern Mississippi. In just one century, Southern Miss has grown from regional teachers’ college into a premier research institution educating thousands of students at multiple locations each year. To celebrate this momentous milestone, a day of celebration has been planned.
“Founders’ Day is a great day every year, but this year is going to be particularly rewarding. We will spend time looking back on the contributions of a great university for the last 100 years and
looking forward to excellent things to come,” said President Martha Saunders. “I hope everyone will mark their calendars now. This is not to be missed.”
Centennial Celebration Day 2010 will offer a full day of events open to the community beginning at 10:30 a.m.at the south lawn of the Aubrey K. Lucas Administration Building with the official installation of Student Government Association (SGA) officers, student awards presentations and inductions into the Hall of Fame. The events continue at 11:30 a.m. with the dedication of the Centennial Gateway and a Centennial Convocation at 2:30 p.m. in Bennett Auditorium.
The day’s events will culminate at 4 p.m. on Weathersby Lawn with a celebration picnic planned for the entire Hattiesburg community. Live music, free food, displays of historical memorabilia and the opportunity to take part in the “100 Years” human formation photo are just a few of the components that will make this celebration the most exciting in university history.
“I look at this Centennial Founders’ Day as a bittersweet moment in my time at Southern Miss,”
said J.R. Robinson, outgoing SGA president, who plans to graduate in May. “This is a time to be thankful for the past leadership of our university and to look forward to the future leadership that will steer our university toward its vision and mission.”
Founders’ Day at Southern Miss is not only a day of merriment, but also a day of reflection. “Our Founders’ Day in this Centennial year 2010 is truly a high moment in the life of our university,”
said Dr. Aubrey K. Lucas, President Emeritus and Honorary Chair of the Centennial Steering Committee. “With a century of significant accomplishments in our past, we will have a time of celebration; and then under President Saunders’ bold, determined, and creative leadership, we will look ahead to continuing to create a history filled with surges of pride, yet tempered with moments of challenge. Founders Day of 2010 will indeed be a landmark event.”
The day’s schedule includes the following events:
-- 10:30 a.m. – Founders’ Day Ceremony, including Student Government Association officer installation, student Hall of Fame inductions, South Lawn of the Lucas Administration Building
-- 11:30 a.m. – Dedication of the Centennial Gateway and time capsule, Hardy Street campus entrance
-- 2:30 p.m. – Centennial Convocation, Bennett Auditorium. Dr. Chester “Bo” Morgan will deliver the keynote address. Twenty faculty and staff members with 40 years of service will be awarded the Centennial Legacy Circle award, and there will be a reading of the Centennial Proclamations.
-- 4 p.m. – Centennial Community Celebration, Shoemaker Square, Weathersby Lawn, West Memorial Plaza. This event includes a free picnic meal, musical entertainment and Centennial exhibit tours.
-- 5:30 p.m. – Founders’ Day finale and “100” Formation photo, M.M. Roberts Stadium. Participants will be photographed in the form of the number “100.”
For more information about the day’s schedule of events, as well as Centennial events scheduled throughout 2010, please visit www.usm.edu/centennial
About The University of Southern Mississippi
The University of Southern Mississippi, founded in 1910, is a comprehensive doctoral and research-extensive university fulfilling its mission of being a leading university in engaging and empowering individuals to transform lives and communities. In a tradition of leadership for student development, Southern Miss is educating a 21st century work force providing intellectual capital, cultural enrichment and innovation to Mississippi and the world. Southern Miss is located in Hattiesburg, Miss., with an additional campus and teaching and research sites on the Mississippi Gulf Coast; further information is found at www.usm.edu.