Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Stephens: A Look Back - 1948

No doubt he had some enormous shoes to fill, but Homer P. Rainey apparently had a successful first year as president of Stephens College.

The 1948 Stephensophia hails him as a friendly, hospital leader with a plan. In fact, this year marks the first of a 25-year plan, although we’re not told much about what’s actually in it. Details are yet to be unfolded, the yearbook staff reports.

Field trips are popular in various academic programs this year. The science program, for instance, includes a field trip to the Lake of the Ozarks and biology and botany enthusiasts engage in a “real Missouri fox hunt” and get a first-hand look at the countryside with a hike to Devil’s Icebox. Sciences, we’re told, are strong and practical. In geology class, students are learning to predict weather; in botany, students discover how to plant their own gardens.

Students taking social studies courses get field trips to housing developments, the police station, the county court, state prison and industrial plants in Kansas City or St. Louis to learn about important problems such as labor, crime and politics. The World Citizen Organization participated at a mock UN Conference held at Missouri University with Stephens representing the U.S. and Brazil.

And three editors of Stephens Life attend the Associated Collegiate Press Convention in Minneapolis.

Among distinguished guests to campus this year include distinguished musicians Lois and Guy Maier, Syliva Zarembra and San Roma. The Aviation Club hosts Miss Elnora Johnson of TWA, William Gray of Pan-American World Airways and Florence Kerr of Northwest Airlines. And the Foreign Relations Club hosts Raymond Swing, a noted correspondent, General John Hildrig, assistant secretary of state in charge of occupied territories, and Richard Lauterbach, a Times correspondent.

John Brinnin, a poet, is in residence at Stephens during the spring semester.

The 1948 Stephensophia includes a slight variation of the Ghost of Senior Hall story we hear today. In this version, a student is doctoring up a Union soldier secretly in her room, but the two actually die as they sneak out one night and come up against a flooded creek. When the bridge collapses, they both drown. That’s a slightly less violent version than the stories we hear today of the soldier being killed and the student hanging herself from a Senior Hall window.

While we in the marketing office have our doubts, the Stephensophia staff has included photographic "evidence" of said ghost.

We’ve not mentioned it in a while, but the Burrall program is as active as ever. Overseen by the Burrall Cabinet, the program includes Sunday evening prayer, Saturdays at 7:22, an evening discussion program, a weekly Vespers service, a symphony orchestra, a choir featuring University of Missouri men and a concert chorus.

Among notable students this year is Barbara Temple who became Barbara Lander, a world traveler who was active in her church. She also started the Grand Forks, N.D. chapter of PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays). In 1948, Temple was president of the Student Activity Board, which hosted campus wide events such as the spring picnic.

Joy Kuyper, editor of the Stephens Standard literary journal this year, went on to work in advertising in New York and for the Herald Daily Newspaper.

Barbara Berry, editor of this year’s Stephensophia, earned a degree in journalism from the University of Georgia and worked in advertising as well. She was also known for being a talented cook and hostess.

And Doris Mitten became Doris Holden, who was active in politics in Dallas, serving on a number of boards and organizations including the United Republicans of Dallas County. This year, she’s president of the Senior Independent Council.

As usual, there are a few amazing full-page photographs in this year’s Stephensophia.

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