Have you ever wondered how Wagner College was able to become one of America’s best colleges in the Princeton Review’s new “Best 388 Colleges” guide?
Learn about the history of Wagner College, from its 1883 founding as a Lutheran seminary prep school in Rochester, New York, through its evolution into a liberal arts college with schools of business and nursing as well as its renowned signature curriculum, the Wagner Plan for the Practical Liberal Arts.
The exhibit was researched by current students using the Wagner College archives, leading to an array of discoveries. The exhibit highlights some of these as told through the eyes of its students. For example, one student highlights the letters written by World War II service people to faculty and friends on Grymes Hill and the impact of the G.I. Bill, while others profile various academic disciplines such as psychology, the physical sciences and theater.
The exhibit shares major turning points in Wagner’s history, from the enrollment of Wagner’s first women students to the occupation of Cunard Hall in 1970 by African Americans students calling on allies to support their concerns. While the exhibit highlights the college’s accomplishments, it also points to areas for continued growth and renewed commitment.
In 2014, Wagner College awarded civil rights activist Julian Bond with an honorary doctorate. During his speech to the graduates, he said, “Each one, reach one, until all are productive citizens of this world. Someday someone will ask you, ‘What did you do with your education?’ Be sure you have an answer.”
The exhibition is inspired by these words. We hope that, by looking back, we can also look to the future to make Wagner a place of opportunity and connection.
The exhibition is scheduled to run from Wednesday, Dec. 2, through Wednesday, Dec. 9, with this opening reception and presentation scheduled for Dec. 2 from 4 to 6 p.m.
The project is funded with support from the NetVUE Grants for Reframing the Institutional Saga.