Western blows out 125 candles
By Marshall Bellamy
MY BIRTHDAY, I CAN GLOAT IF WANT TO, GLOAT IF I WANT
TO, GLOAT IF I WANT TO, YOU WOULD GLOAT TOO IF IT HAPPENED
TO YOU. London Mayor Anne Marie DeCicco and Western President
Paul Davenport celebrate the 125th anniversary at The
Great Hall Tuesday.
Hundreds gathered at The Great Hall in Somerville House yesterday
to celebrate Western's 125th birthday and eat free cake.
"The University of Western Ontario has always been and
always will be an integral part of London," said London
Mayor Anne Marie DeCicco during her address at the celebration,
adding the university has greatly contributed to a strong relationship
with the community over the last 125 years.
"We see no reason why a young man should go to Toronto
or Kingston for a university degree," stated an actor
portraying Western founder Bishop Isaac Hellmuth.
"The bishop's presence reminds us of our humble beginnings," said
Western President Paul Davenport, noting 125 years ago Western
was an underfunded offshoot of Huron College. "We were
dependent upon the Anglican Church -and the City of London," he
According to Davenport, the dependence on the city for support
developed into a strong relationship which has lasted until
today. "We must never forget those local roots," he
Davenport also pointed out the accomplishments of the university
over the years. "I don't think any of you have to be reminded
what we have accomplished," he said, citing more students
have been recruited, Western's entrance average has increased
to 83 per cent, graduates are flocking to the school for research
and more faculty have been recruited since Western's last major
growth spurt during the 1960s.
"It was great to see so many students were out at the
event," said University Students' Council President Paul
Yeoman, noting he was pleased Western administration sent an
e-mail inviting all students to the celebration.
"[I came] to celebrate the 125th anniversary; I came
[to Canada] as an exchange student so it's all new to me. I'm
very interested with all of the people who came [and spoke]," said
fourth-year economics student Joohye Kim.
"I had no food in my fridge, so I'm totally indulged," said
second-year political science student Ciara Gawdiak-Smyth of
the free food that was offered.