WILMINGTON — Wilmington College honored more than two-dozen employees — whose service to the institution totals 385 years — during the Opening Year Meeting of faculty and staff Aug. 15.
“It’s important we have a chance to recognize these milestones,” President Jim Reynolds said. “I greatly appreciate the people who work here everyday toward changing the lives of our students.”
The president hearkened the year 1973 when Secretariat won horse racing’s Triple Crown, Spiro Agnew resigned as vice president and the Watergate investigation began. It was the year the bar code was introduced, a gallon of gasoline was 40 cents, milk cost 98 cents and “The Sting” won the Academy Award for Best Picture. Roberta Flack’s “Killing Me Softly” won the Grammy for Best Song and the Miami Dolphins won the Super Bowl.
At WC some 45 years ago, Becky Haines joined the staff at Wilmington College as fine arts secretary and theatre technician.
Fast forward to 1988, the year a terrorist’s bomb took down Pam Am Flight 103 over Scotland, the first successful Lasik eye surgery took place and Prozac was introduced into the American market.
Also, gas was 91 cents, a first class stamp 24 cents, milk $1.89 and “Rain Man” and its star, Dustin Hoffman, won Oscars. “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” won the Best Song Grammy and the San Francisco 49ers captured the Super Bowl trophy.
Also, Wilmington College hired Robert Metcalf as a carpenter and Hal Shunk as a member of the art faculty.
Twenty-five years ago, in 1993, scientists cloned the first human embryo, the first bombing at the World Trade Center occurred and gas was $1.11, a stamp cost 29 cents, milk was $2.88, “Schindler’s List” earned Best Picture, Tom Hanks received the Oscar for his work in “Philadelphia” and the Dallas Cowboys won the Lombardi Trophy.
Also, Lori Watts, associate director of Student One Stop Center, joined the WC staff.
In 1998, 20 years ago, the Euro made its debut, Google was founded, the Good Friday Peace Accords were signed in Northern Ireland and the Clinton impeachment trail began. Gas was $1.15, milk $3.16 and a stamp 32 cents. Shakespeare in Love won the Oscar while its starring actress, Gwyneth Paltrow, won for Best Actress, Roberto Benigni won the Best Actor Oscar for “Life Is Beautiful” and the Denver Broncos captured the Super Bowl title.
In addition in 1998, the College hired Carl Coatney, athletic equipment manager; Trip Breen III, swimming coach and director of aquatics; and Ron Combs, track and field coach.
Others recognized for service milestones were:
• 15 years — D. William Newland, instructor in sport management; Dr. Sylvia Stevens, vice president for external programs; Dr. Michael Goldcamp, associate professor of chemistry; Dr. Stephen Potthoff, associate professor of religion and philosophy; Jennifer Walker, associate professor of athletic training; and Randy Gerber, Barrett Farm manager.
• 10 years — Leslie Nichols, assistant to the president; Dr. Corey Cockerill, associate professor of communication arts and agriculture; Dr. Ursula McTaggart, associate professor of English; Dr. Charles Dick, associate professor of accounting; Dr. Marlaina Leppert-Wahl, associate professor of political science; and Heath Whittamore, network administrator.
• 5 years — Sonia Thompson, assistant director of Student One Stop; Dr. Bonnie Erwin, assistant professor of English; Dr. Elizabeth Haynes, assistant professor of mathematics; Deborah Triance, Student One Stop Center representative; Danny Harp, assistant director of admission; Paula Stewart, assistant swim coach and Quaker Fit director; Christonia Fouch, Admission Office administrative assistant; Sandra Pierson, Enrollment Management administrative assistant; and Jena Frommeyer, Title III Team student success coach.
The College anticipates breaking all-time records for both total entering freshmen, with more than 400, and new students, which represents a combination of freshmen and transfer students totaling 475, as the school year begins Monday.
Enrollment numbers will not become official until the count in early September.
The extraordinarily large group of incoming freshmen at WC includes more than 50 from Clinton County, which constitutes at least a modern-day record. The College stands to break its all-time record of 383 freshmen, which goes back to 1946 and the massive influx of students on the GI Bill following World War II. WC tied that figure four years ago, in addition to breaking the record for new students with 437 in 2014.
President Jim Reynolds told faculty and staff Wednesday the College is on a “positive trajectory” and this potentially record enrollment provides a great opportunity to continue “changing family trees” through the distinct hands-on learning and other educational opportunities offered at the College.