Ramapo community celebrates 48th Founders’ Day

Photo by Alyssa Rabinowitz

Ramapo College celebrated its 48th birthday on Wednesday afternoon at the annual Founders' Day event. President Peter Mercer was joined by Ramapo’s Student Government Association and the Board of Trustees for the occasion. The Founders' Day event honors the College’s first faculty, who were instrumental in Ramapo’s current success.

According to Ramapo’s website, “These founders and pioneers took a chance when joining this new collegiate effort and each November the College celebrates their commitment.”

Festivities included music, games, a photo booth and much more, which created an energetic and celebratory atmosphere. Many students and faculty enjoyed various foods and refreshments provided by the SGA. There were desserts from Rockland Bakery and drinks from Mahwah’s Blueberry Frozen Yogurt.

“I’ve attended other Founders' Day events in the past, and each year it’s actually a lot of fun,” said junior Sarah Garcia. “It’s really cool that every year all these actives are provided for us, as well as all this food.”

Along with lunch, there was a celebratory cake in honor of Ramapo’s birthday. The annual cake presentation is a tradition at the Founders' Day party. Students also made their own tie-dye T-shirts and even had their portraits done by a caricaturist.

“This was a really fun event, and a nice surprise on the way to my class today,” said senior Michaella Bermudez. “So many people showed up, and everyone seems like they’re having a great time.”

Ramapo was founded in 1969, and today is New Jersey’s premier public liberal arts college. President Peter Mercer explained that this is largely in part to the college’s founding staff and many supporters. President Mercer also acknowledged the three founding members who were in attendance for Wednesday’s event.

“We are very fortunate to have these founders physically here with us today,” Mercer said.

President Mercer also gave a speech to thank the members of the SGA. He acknowledged their help and overwhelming enthusiasm and support for this Founders’ Day, as well as their support toward the College as a whole. Members of the SGA volunteered, passing out food and overseeing the event.

“I think it’s really important to acknowledge the founding faculty and all the commitments they made to this College. Without their hard work, Ramapo wouldn’t be as successful as it is today. It’s great that we’re all honoring them, and today’s event was a really fun way to do that,” said senior Jenna Lupardo.

Along with this event, the SGA joined the Ramapo College Foundation to host Ramapo’s first Day of Giving.

Within his speech, SGA President Stephan Lally shared a memorable Kofi Annan quote, saying, “Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family.”

People were encouraged to make a donation of any size to the 2017-2018 Annual Fund. These donations honor Ramapo’s founding staff and their countless contributions to the College.

Mercer said, “Your generosity helps to provide countless student scholarships, funds faculty-student research and supports College projects.”