Archive for August, 2011


Widener Gallery Hosts Art for Justice Exhibit

August 29, 2011

I Survive by Charles Lawson (Zafir)

More than 2 million people in the United States are in prisons or jails.  Among that large population are many talented men and women who turn to artwork to express themselves. A new exhibit at the Widener University Art Gallery will display exceptional examples of art produced by inmates.

The show runs from Aug. 30 to Oct. 15 and is curated by Art for Justice, a Philadelphia-area based non-profit organization that supports and exhibits the artwork of prison inmates.  The exhibit consists of works by Charles Herbert Lawson (Zafir), Luis David Gonzales (Suave),  and twelve others.

A reception will be held from 4-7 p.m.  on September 15,  with a spoken word presentation at 5 p.m.   Gallery hours are Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and  Wednesday–Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  (The gallery will be closed Saturday, September 3.)   For more information, see the news release.

Pill Line by Luis David Gonzalez (Suave)


A New Widener Building for a New School Year

August 25, 2011

Incoming freshmen and their families stroll by the new academic building during better weather earlier this week.   The 35,000-square-foot building that houses the School of Nursing and the Oskin Leadership Institute is now in use, and was opened up for returning faculty to view Thursday afternoon (as the verdant new landscaping soaked up the rain).  Many naming opportunities are available for the new building, and can be found on the Taking the Lead – The Campaign for Widener web site.   To see inside the new building — as well as photographs of the newly renovated cafeteria — check out this photo slideshow from Aug. 8.



Online Scrapbook: A Family Connection to Pennsylvania Military College and Prep School

August 23, 2011

Arthur Ryan III in a miniature PMC uniform, with his father, 1944

When Arthur Ryan III was a young boy, he often played where Pennsylvania Military College kept the horses for the polo team in the mid-1940s.  “I used to spend a lot of time around the stables,” said Ryan, a retired U.S. Army major who lives in Oxford, Pa.

He was there because his father, Captain Arthur Ryan Jr., a ’38 alumnus who had played polo as a cadet, was a staff officer at PMC and later worked for the college as admissions recruiter.  He took his son on recruiting trips as far west as Ohio and as far north as Maine.  They put a lot of miles on their car.  “He had a new Packard every year,” Ryan said.

Ryan later attended Pennsylvania Military Prep School (PMPS) until 1956 when it closed.  His father left the college in the mid-fifties, and died in 1975.

Ryan recently donated a scrap book that had been his father’s to the Widener University Archives that includes photographs and memorabilia from PMC from 1933 to 1956, as well as many newspaper clippings about the college.  You can view the scrapbook online in the Digital Archives.

Ryan went on to graduate from Haverford High School, and after a year at Penn State – where he competed against the PMC Pershing Rifles team – he attended West Point, graduating in 1963.  From there, his career in the military included two tours in Vietnam, service as advisor to the Colombian army, and assignment as assistant professor in the Department of Engineering at United State Military Academy.  He retired from the Army in 1984.

Ryan is interested in conducting an oral history of the prep school and asks former students and alumni interested in talking with him to contact him via e-mail at 

Also note that yearbooks from the prep school from 1923 to 1956 can be found online in the Digital Archives.


Widener University: Almost Time for School

August 19, 2011

Widener University students will have some big helping hands to keep track of time this semester – thanks to the Pennsylvania Military College class of 1961.

This 16-foot high, 19th-century style clock now stands in the new traffic circle on 14th Street in front of University Center.  The clock is a gift from the 1961 PMC class, celebrating its fiftieth anniversary this year.  Homecoming events include a champagne breakfast for the class of 1961 on Saturday, Oct. 1. Click here to see the complete homecoming weekend schedule.

Across from the clock, a classical colonnade welcomes visitors to the campus.   The finishing landscaping touches are underway on the grounds from 14th Street to the Wolfgram Memorial Library and from the new academic building to Kapelski Learning Center.  The School of Nursing has moved into the new academic building (It’s mostly obscured in this photo by the tree on the right; look for a photo of it next week.)

Orientation and freshman move-in day is next Wednesday, and classes start Aug. 29.


Widener-PMC Alumni at the Old Ball Game

August 16, 2011

Laura Cogar `92 and Charles Drasser `65 (pictured) were among members of the regional Widener-PMC alumni chapters from Washington and Baltimore who enjoyed a baseball game at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in Baltimore.

Alumni on Aug. 10 met for a pre-game party featuring unlimited ballpark food and beverages in the Advocates Room and then sat together at the game.  The Orioles won the game over the Chicago White Sox 6-4 in 10 innings.  Director of Alumni Engagement Tina Phillips Ed.D.,’82,’98,’03 believes the home team won because the Widener Alumni group was in attendance!

To get involved with your regional alumni chapter and to find out about other upcoming alumni events in your area, visit the Alumni web page.

You also are encouraged to join Widener’s online alumni community to connect with other alums, create profiles, class notes, alumni clubs, photo galleries and more.  Please visit the Widener-PMC Online Community today!


All Widener-PMC Yearbooks Now Online

August 4, 2011

Widener reference librarian Jill Borin reports that all of the Widener and Pennsylvania Military College yearbook are now accessible online in the Wolfgram Memorial Library’s Digital Collections website.

“With tremendous help from Rosalie Fisher, who did all the scanning, we now have a total of 98 yearbooks on the site covering the years 1900 – 2008, including 11 preparatory school yearbooks,” Borin said.

To view the yearbooks, visit the Digital Collections Website and scroll down to see the selection of yearbooks.

To learn more about the archival process, see the newest edition of Postcript, Widener’s alumni newsletter, and the lead article “Digital archives allow alumni to search for yearbooks, photos, and more online.”