Blog post written by Julivette Torres, Library Circulation Graduate Assistant, MA Applied History
As Shippensburg University hosts many celebrations highlighting the accomplishments of students, faculty, and staff throughout the school year, alumni are celebrated during Alumni Day and now, Alumni Weekend. This has been a tradition of the university where alumni are encouraged to visit their alma mater for activities, lunches, and to reminisce about their time in Shippensburg. Activities include recreational sports games, tours of the campus, time dedicated for class reunions, and more events to keep one’s day busy.
Classes collaboratively contribute funds to donate to the university to go towards various areas such as providing support for students to building renovations, so their class legacy continues. Many can recall the colored plates now used at Reisner Dining Hall and the loud sound they make when they fall to the ground. These sounds are nothing new to Reisner. In the 1930s, blue pigmented porcelain plates were just as loud when they fell to the floor except, they broke into many pieces. As a part of their 50th reunion in 1989, the Class of 1939 gifted $12,000 dollars to the Shippensburg University Foundation, SU Foundation, to help replace the blue plates.
Besides tangible contributions, Shippensburg alumni have been ranked number one in alumni participation across the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education for the past ten years according to the Voluntary Support of Education Report, 2011-2021. Much of their participation stems from volunteering to be a phonathon caller for the SU Foundation to volunteering time for the Annual Fund and for athletic events. The most common way Raiders give back is through the creation of scholarships, academic and athletic, to not only motivate students but to provide financial support to help students accomplish their academic and personal goals.
Caption: Photograph of the Class of 1939 at its 50th reunion in 1989.
Alumni Harold U. Crouse, class of 1939, and his wife Helen F. Crouse created the Business and English Composition scholarship and later their children, who are also alumni, created the Crouse Geo-Environmental Science Scholarship for juniors enrolled in the Geoenvironmental Studies Program. Harold was also a recipient of the Jesse S. Heiges Distinguished Alumni Award, which is given to alumni that have notable achievements professionally and to the community. Other recipients of the award include Dr. Gary (1968, 1970M) and Mary Jo Grove (1969, 1970M), Frederick D. Potthoff (1970), and most recently in 2021 Chad S. Lesher (1994) to mention a few. Whether through class gifts, volunteering, creation of scholarships, or simply supporting their alma mater by visiting on Homecoming weekend, it is clear to see that once a raider, always a raider is embodied by alumni.
Photos retrieved from photos.ship.edu