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July 10, 2014

Campus in July

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Campus in summer, 1972

Many consider July the quietest month on campus - classes are not in session, people go on vacation, not many major events are held. But there’s a, perhaps, surprising amount of activity during this quiet month.

University staff with finance responsibilities are busy closing the books on the just-ended fiscal year. As the Archives is located in the same buidling as the Controller’s Office, we see them in the halls. I would never describe my colleagues as haggard, but there are signs that some of these folks may be putting in long hours. Faculty are planning fall classes, writing and continuing their research. Most of us are doing annual reports. Many of us are catching up on projects postponed from the previous academic year or getting ready for the coming academic year.

Many changes take effect in July, especially July 1, the start of the new fiscal year. Case Western Reserve University was created July 1, 1967. The Colleges, combining the undergraduate colleges Western Reserve College and Case Institute of Technology, was created July 1, 1987. It was “uncreated” five years later, again on July 1, when it was separated into the College of Arts and Sciences and the Case School of Engineering.

July often has seen the start of campus building and renovation projects. In 1985 the first phase renovation of the Emerson Physical Education Center, later renamed the Veale Convocation, Recreation and Athletic Center, started in July. Smaller projects have also been done: restoration of the windows of Amasa Stone Chapel in 1999, installation of the clock on the exterior of the Biomedical Research Building in 1992. Although, it may not be accurate to characterize a 16-foot tall, one-ton clock as a small project.

Major initiatives are frequently announced in July, even though they begin months later. Both the first and final phases of CWRU’s no smoking policies were announced in July - in 1987 and 1989. CWRU’s campus-wide Community Service Day, scheduled in September, was announced in July 2003.

Although fewer in number than during, say, April, events large and small have been held in July. In the 19th century, Commencement was often in July. More recently Party on the Quad has usually been held in July. In 1988 stamp collectors gathered on campus in July for the unveiling of a stamp honoring Dr. Harvey W. Cushing.

I’ve become more aware of these events recently as I’ve begun tweeting what I think of as Days in the Life of CWRU. It has been something of a challenge to find events for every day in July, and some days defeated me. My goal is to share some event during the university’s life for as many days as possible in the next year. The University’s history is not the sole property of the University Archives, of course, so I hope others will join in - #cwruhistory.

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