Unveiling of ring statue to kick off Parents’ Weekend 2011
Parents’ Weekend 2011 will begin like no other before it with the unveiling of a statue of a Citadel class ring.
The unveiling ceremony begins at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Oct. 14, at the three-way intersection of Hagood Avenue, Lee Avenue and Avenue of Remembrance – the gateway to The Citadel campus. The statue is a gift to The Citadel Alumni Association from Palmetto Balfour, the South Carolina division of the national class ring manufacturer. Palmetto Balfour, which is owned by Jason Cline, Citadel Class of 1993, is the official provider of Citadel class rings.
The statue unveiling coincides with the presentation of rings to the Class of 2012. More than 380 seniors are expected to receive their rings at 1 p.m. Friday in McAlister Field House. It is the first major event of Parents’ Weekend, which runs Friday through Sunday.
“The Citadel Alumni Association is honored to dedicate this unique ring statue. It represents the band of gold that every Citadel alumnus looks forward to proudly wearing upon graduation,” said Ralph Tice, Class of 1974. “It is a universally recognizable symbol of the integrity and leadership The Citadel strives to instill.”
The statue is bronze and was created by Deep in the Heart Art Foundry in Bastrop, Texas.
The alumni association paid to create the monument site. No state money was used to create the ring or for the site work.
The number 12, which appears on the crest of each senior’s ring, will be affixed to the statue’s crest. Each Parents’ Weekend it will be changed to represent the most recent class to receive rings.
“I believe the ring statue will be a daily reminder for all cadets of their goal of earning the right to wear The Citadel ring and ultimately their Citadel diploma,” said Cline, whose brother is a 1989 grad and whose father is a 1959 grad and worked for Balfour for 43 years. “As alumni they will be reminded of the sacrifices and challenges they overcame during their cadet career.”
Also celebrating a milestone event this Parents’ Weekend will be the members of the Class of 2015. The freshmen, also known as knobs because of their shaved heads, will be promoted from cadet recruits to cadet privates and will be officially inducted into the South Carolina Corps of Cadets.
“On behalf of The Citadel family, I congratulate our cadets on their achievements that we celebrate during Parents Weekend,” said Lt. Gen. John W. Rosa, president of The Citadel. “For seniors, receiving their class rings signifies that upon graduation they will join the ranks of Citadel alumni. Freshmen are no longer recruits, joining the Corps of Cadets as privates, which is an important step in their leadership development.”
In addition to the class ring presentation and the Fourth Class promotion ceremony, the campus will be abuzz with activity during Parents' Weekend, including a drill competition and military dress parade, performances by the Rifle Legion and Regimental Band and Pipes, and Bulldog football. Each of the college’s academic departments will host open houses for parents and the barracks will be open to families to visit cadet rooms.
Parents’ Weekend is one of the college's four major weekends. The others are Homecoming, Corps Days and Graduation Week. A complete schedule of events, most of which are free and open to the public, is available at www.citadel.edu.