No. 123 – Mace and Medallion

The official College Medallion donned by the SUNY Oswego president at Commencement and other official ceremonies was a gift of the Class of 1966.

President James Perdue, 1966

President James Perdue, center, with the College Medallion.

Designed by Art Professor Emeritus Dominic T. DiPasquale, the medallion commemorated President James Perdue’s inauguration. It contains two dates: 1861 for the college’s founding and 1948, which marks the date Oswego became a SUNY school.

“At the time Oswego was very small … the kind of place where everybody knew everyone else,” said Russell Herrmann ’66, who was class president at the time. “The students definitely had a special feeling for the college and they wanted to leave their mark.”

That they did, as the Medallion is still in use today.

“I am honored that it is still a part of the [Commencement] ceremony,” said Herrmann, whose wife, Leslie Seelbach Herrmann ’66, was also a class officer. Son Greg ’91 is also a graduate of Oswego.

Another Commencement staple, the College Mace, was a gift to Perdue from the Class of 1969. Art Professor Joseph F. Shoenfelt created its design and silver work while Technology Education Professor Emeritus William D. Todd shaped its rosewood shaft.

The jade sphere centerpiece symbolizes wisdom and knowledge, according
to a short history included in the Commencement program. The first to bear the mace was the late Professor Donald Snygg.

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