Section: Editorial

Staff Editorial: Bicentennial efforts should extend beyond 2024

Happy 200 years, Kenyon! You barely look a day over 135.

From Allison Janney to Paul Newman, John Green to Bill Watterson, Rutherford B. Hayes to Leopoldo Lopez, our professors to our parents, Kenyon has left a lasting mark on American history and the liberal arts tradition. Graduates have gone on to forge successful and meaningful careers across all disciplines, each bringing the product of their Kenyon education to the workforce and world.

Kenyon’s bicentennial celebrations will take many forms and bring together generations of these alumni from across the country. In the coming months, President Julie Kornfeld will travel to Chicago, San Francisco and Washington. Alumni are encouraged to share their Kenyon memories as part of an oral history project. The College will update alumni records, host alumni and student engagements and has launched the Bicentennial Special Projects Fund for campus beautification, student research projects and alumni groups, to name just a few. 

We applaud Kenyon’s efforts to expand the reach of its alumni network, its steps to update alumni records and their commitment to provide funding to a litany of campus projects, but these initiatives should not be limited to the celebration of Kenyon’s 200th year. These are efforts that should always receive resources from the College — not just on an anniversary. Kenyon should proactively continue to connect students and alumni to better prepare current students for the workforce and keep the Kenyon legacy alive by documenting its story. 

We do not know what Kenyon’s next 200 years will look like, but the College must make a sustained effort to strengthen the ties between campus and the broader community we all hold so dear. Alumni-student relationships are crucial for the success of the College beyond the four walls of a classroom. Making it easier to translate a Kenyon education to the real world will ensure that the College’s commitment to liberal arts education does not remain a classroom ideal. 

So, Kenyon, here’s to 200 more!

Sincerely,

Annalia, Audrey and Katie

This editorial was written by editors-in-chief Katie Sparvero ’25 and Audrey Baker ’25 and managing editor Annalia Fiore ’25. You can contact them at sparvero1@kenyon.edu, baker10@kenyon.edu and fiore1@kenyon.edu, respectively. 

0 Comments

Comments for this article have closed. If you'd like to send a letter to the editor for publication, please email us at collegian@kenyon.edu.