A Symbol of Change
Record crowds filled Horace Mann Auditorium on April 1 for the highlight of this year's highly successful homecoming celebration-a moving ceremony honoring civil rights pioneer Ruby Bridges Hall.
President Arthur Levine and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean Darlyne Bailey were on hand to introduce the honoree. Responding to a standing ovation, Bridges expressed appreciation to TC for its faith in her mission. "Thank you so much for helping me with my work across the country," said the honoree, who continues to fight racism through her foundation, Ruby's Bridges.
Attended by nearly 500 alumni, friends, trustees, faculty and elementary school children, Homecoming "really exceeded our expectations," said Andre McKenzie, President-elect of TC's alumni council.
After Bridges accepted her medal, John Merrow, Peabody award-winning commentator and TC Trustee, moderated a discussion on the aftermath of Brown v. Board of Education. Panelists included Sybil Hampton, President of the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, who was the only African-American student to enter the 10th grade at Little Rock High School in 1959; Amy Stuart Wells, Professor of Educational Policy, who recently completed a study of adults who attended integrated schools in the 1970s; and Edmund Gordon, Director of the Institute of Urban and Minority Education at TC, who offered a reflective overview of the past 50 years.
Homecoming kicked off with a well-attended showcase featuring research, projects and initiatives from teachers and students, a popular venue introduced at the 2002 homecoming.
FOR MORE: TC Homecoming 2004 Web site; "Teachers College Honors Desegregation Groundbreaker Ruby Bridges Hall"