Western New Mexico University will commemorate its 125th anniversary with a Founder’s Day celebration on Friday, Feb. 9, 2018, hosting the public for tours, birthday cake and history presentations on campus.
Founder’s Day will kick off at 11 a.m. in Light Hall Theater. Silver City mayor Ken Ladner and other WNMU dignitaries will speak at the opening ceremonies, which will also include a reading of Western New Mexico University’s Founder’s Day proclamation and an historic video presentation.
Local musicians will give a live performance during the cutting of the cake on Light Hall Patio at noon, and Western New Mexico University’s Mariachi Plata will play in Old James Stadium, while the university photographer gets an aerial group photo at 1 p.m. Members of the public are invited to be in the photo, forming the numbers 125 with their bodies for the camera.
During the campus tour, which starts at 2 p.m., the public can wander campus and learn some of the stories behind historic campus buildings, such as Light Hall, Bowden Hall, Hunter Hall, Ritch Hall, Graham Gym, the MEChA Building and Fleming Hall, which turns 101 years old this year. The tour ends at Miller Library, where vintage clothing, posters, documents and photos will be exhibited.
Western New Mexico University was founded on February 11, 1893, as a state normal school for the training of teachers in the state’s southwestern mining region. Today, it is recognized as a dynamic institution, contributing to New Mexico’s cultural, intellectual, social and educational growth while honoring its community roots.
The New Mexico House of Representatives proclaimed February 11 Western New Mexico University Founder’s Day, the date when the university remembers its contributions as a comprehensive regional, rural, public coeducational university that caters to a student body diverse in age, culture, language and ethnic background. In 2018, Founder’s Day will be celebrated the Friday before the actual anniversary.
Western New Mexico University has been continuously accredited since 1942. It has provided teacher training and administrative training to thousands who now staff New Mexico’s public education system. For the next 125 years, Western New Mexico University aims to continue attaining educational excellence through academic publications, symposia, cross-cultural experiences and scholarly pursuits.
Leading up to Western New Mexico University’s 125th anniversary, the Foundation is holding a special fundraising drive. The 125 Hours of Giving event takes place Monday, Feb. 5, through Friday, Feb. 9, 2018. The Foundation’s goal is to raise $16,000 that week, which means donors need to contribute about $125 per hour over the 125 hours. Learn more here or click on the button below to give.