The Office of the Provost announced on Feb. 28 that Seton Hall will hold its first ever Charter Week, a week-long celebration of the annual Charter Day. Events will begin on March 10 and end on March 15.
Charter Day, which is Seton Hall’s birthday, celebrates the founding of the University in 1856 and the granting of its charter by the New Jersey Legislature in 1861. This year, the University will be extending Charter Day into a week of various events that celebrate and acknowledge the history of Seton Hall as well as its Catholic identity and mission.
“We wanted to expand the concept of Charter Day to be all-inclusive so that we can include all of the different clubs and organizations on campus,” said University Archivist Alan Delozier. “It really ties in with the celebration of the University.”
Delozier said that in years past, Seton Hall only hosted a special program on Charter Day that encompassed the SHU community in one place with music, a keynote speaker, and refreshments.
The week of events will commence on March 10 with an event hosted by the South Orange community that will focus on the importance of preserving and celebrating family and local history. The event begins at 11 a.m. in the South Orange Public Library.
On March 12 and March 14, SHU will be providing special tours around campus. The tours will focus on the historical buildings that cultivate the university’s history over time and its chronological development.
The blessing of the newly commissioned statue of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton will take place in the lobby of Bethany Hall on Tuesday, March 13 at 3 p.m. Birthday cake will be served after the blessing to commemorate the Charter Day celebration.
WSOU, Seton Hall’s student-run radio station, will celebrate its 70th anniversary in the Beck Rooms of the Walsh Library on Tuesday, March 13 by presenting a film about the history of the radio station, called “Pirates of the Airwaves – The WSOU Story.” Producer Rob Longo will introduce and the comment on the making of the film.
The Joseph A. Unanue Latino Institute and Catholic Studies will be hosting several events in support of Charter Day on Wednesday, March 14. A luncheon and lecture on the Lady of Guadalupe with Fr. Augustus Puleo will take place in the Chancellor’s Suite followed by a Spanish mass at the Immaculate Conception Chapel.
March 15 will be the official Charter Day. There will be a historical symposium on the history of Seton Hall in the Faculty Lounge. The panel will feature faculty who have researched the more than 160 years of Seton Hall’s history. Panelists will discuss an overview of Seton Hall, the history of the Immaculate Conception Seminary, and the development of the University’s athletics.
Seton Hall will also continue its annual program at 3 p.m. on Charter Day. The annual Bishop Bernard J. McQuaid Medal for Distinguished Service will be awarded to a long-serving Seton Hall employee for their distinguished service and commitment to the university’s mission.
The President’s Award for Student Service will also be awarded and the Servant Leader Scholars will be recognized.
There will be daily events and activities during Charter Week, including a daily trivia contest and a food drive that will take place in the residence halls. The Walsh Library will also feature a window display on the 50th anniversary of the university becoming a co-educational campus.
Delozier said that he hopes that a week-long celebration of Charter Week will have a bigger impact on students.
Nate Valyo, a freshman economics major, said that he is interested in taking one of the tours around campus.
“I really would like to learn about the history of our school,” Valyo said. “Since I’m a freshman, I think it is important to know about the history of the place where I will spend the next three years of life.”
Brielle Runfeldt, a freshman biology major, said that she is interested in attending the University’s history events.
“Learning about the roots of our school is important,” Runfeldt said. “It will show us the growth of our University and give us pride in our accomplishments.”
Liam Oakes can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.