AU Archives is celebrating the launch of its newest digital collection, American University Commencement Programs. An almost complete set of AU’s commencement programs dating between 1915 and 2015 is now available online. The programs are full text searchable and individuals can download pdf copies. Additional information on the commencement ceremonies prior to 1925 including the program can found in The University Courier.
Procession to 1925 Commencement
If you click on the magnifying glass icon and select the “only in this collection box,” you can search just the commencement programs.
American University first celebrated Martin Luther King Jr. Day on January 20, 1986. AU cancelled classes and gave its employees the day off. The AU Black Coalition called for AU’s celebration of the King Holiday to “capture the essence of the man and the movement that he represented.” In 1987 and 1988, AU held “State of the Dream” conferences which looked at what progress has been made in civil rights so far and what remains to be done. The speakers focused on the areas of education, skills, housing and economic mobility. Starting in 1989, AU held an annual commemoration ceremony with speakers and music. AU inaugurated its MLK Day of Service in 2003. AU’s current celebration includes a variety of activities including lectures, musical tributes, film screenings and a day of community service.
AU Gospel Choir performing at AU’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day ceremony in 1998
Stop by the first floor of Bender Library to see our new exhibit which features photographs and programs that showcase the longevity and diversity of the performing arts at American University. AU has offered instruction in dance, music, and dramatic arts since the undergraduate college’s inception. 1926 and 1927 were banner years with the launch of the College Orchestra and Glee Club and the first spring play. The performing arts remain vibrant at AU with numerous acapella, dance and theatre ensembles. The exhibit will be on display through the end of the spring semester.
In addition to being beautiful, Japanese wood block prints present a wealth of information about Japanese history and culture. The newest exhibit on the third floor of Bender Library features works from the Charles Nelson Spinks and Dorothy A. and Charles A. Moore Jr. collections. The prints on display show details of Ainu daily life and seasonal ceremonies, provide guidance on visiting pilgrimage sites, and illustrate the traditional process of making Mochi.
The triptychs from the Moore Collection are composed of three individual prints that were joined together. They had been stored rolled for many years and could no longer be displayed flat. This fall we sent the two rolled prints from the Moore Collection to a conservation lab for humidification and flattening. Now visitors can now enjoy the prints in their entirety.
Kabuki Actor Prints
The exhibit will be up through the end of the semester. The images will rotate so be sure to visit several times.