Sheldon Hall Cupola
With the lighting of the Sheldon Hall cupola and the historic statue of founder Edward Austin Sheldon on Sept. 8, 1998, Oswego State University returned to its roots on the eve of the inauguration of its tenth president.
The torch traditionally represents learning and the passing of knowledge from one generation to the next. At the Sheldon Lighting Ceremony as part of the tenth inauguration week of events, the torch was passed in a different sense to President Deborah F. Stanley.
A reader’s theatre performance titled “Oswego’s Ten Presidents,” adapted by Professor of Theatre Mark Cole ’73 from Dorothy Rogers’ two volumes on the history of Oswego State University, preceded the lighting ceremony. Master of ceremonies Steve Levy ’87, invited President Stanley and various members of the academic community to light their candles from the Torch of Learning.
The setting on the lawn in front of Sheldon Hall was enhanced with the return of the historic statue of Oswego State founder Edward Austin Sheldon, according to campus tradition, constructed with the pennies collected by New York state’s school children. The ceremony culminated in the dramatic lighting of the cupola of Sheldon Hall itself.
Sheldon Hall, the historic home of Oswego State, was opened in 1913. A site on the National Register of Historic Places, the building was closed in 1983 and was returned to campus use in 1998.
Now with the torch passed to a new president, historic Sheldon Hall, named in honor of Oswego’s first president, returns as a beacon to future achievements.
Text adapted from the Inauguration Program for Deborah F. Stanley, September 1998