President Joanne Glasser’s voice may have been weak during homecoming’s Founder’s Day Convocation, but her words were strong.
Glasser said three characteristics, focus, foresight and faith, were the foundation of a very successful man, William Rainey Harper, Mrs. Bradley’s “right hand man.” She said she believed Founder’s Day was a great day to reflect on his success, and the overall success of Bradley.
“Founder’s Day has always been, and always will be, an occasion of joy and remembrance for all of us,” she said.
More than fifty members of the faculty and staff received awards during the ceremony. The employees who have worked for Bradley for 25-50 years were honored for their dedication, and five professors were specifically awarded for their professional excellence.
Four Bradley alumni also received awards for service and outstanding achievement in their fields.
However, the focus of many speeches, while honoring Bradley’s diverse past and achievements, looked to the future. Various speakers, including Douglas Stewart, Regional President of central Illinois’s PNC Bank, spoke of Bradley’s progress and continuous expansion.
“Our vision for a bigger, bolder Bradley continues,” Stewart said. “It is our students who are making a difference every day.”
One such student, student body president Alan Bukingolts, joined the prestigious men and women onstage at the ceremony. He represented the students by saying a few remarks that echoed Stewart’s faith in Bradley students, both now and in the future.
“No matter what our age, we can always make a contribution to the world around us,” said Bukingolts. “In doing so, we will fulfill Ms. Bradley’s vision: ‘Go Far, Go Bradley.’”
The Bradley Chorale also represented the students by leading everyone gathered in the “Star-Spangled Banner” and “Hail, Red and White,” Bradley’s school song. They also performed “Mundi renovatio” or “the renewal of the world” in Latin.
Freshman engineering major Nathan Cornell, who attended as an assignment for his EHS100 course, said he enjoyed the ceremony and his cancelled classes.
“No classes for me today,” he said. “But I’m glad I got the chance to come to this. It was formal, but informative.”