PHILADELPHIA, September 18, 2014—Community College of Philadelphia will celebrate its Golden Anniversary over the next 12 months and festivities get into full swing on Sept. 23, with some cool jazz, free giveaways, donuts, coffee and cookies.
The College’s multi-talented sixth president, Dr. Donald “Guy” Generals, will perform with a campus jazz band serenading students, staff and faculty from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. Dr. Generals is an avid drummer who once played with Cissy (mother of Whitney) Houston’s band before dedicating himself to a career in higher education. The band will perform at the Bonnell Circle, which is on the east side of 17th Street, near the entrance of the Allen T. Bonnell Building. Media is invited.
That morning, on the 50th Anniversary microsite at WWW.CCP.EDU/50, visitors can scroll through a timeline of the College’s history, view old photos of the College and the city, post personalized anniversary messages and watch videos. In addition, over the next 12 months the College will profile a number of distinguished alumni who are Moving Philadelphia Forward, and making a difference through their careers, community service or philanthropic efforts. Richard S. Downs, a member of the first graduating class in 1967 and a retired business executive, and Fire Commissioner Derrick Sawyer; are among those whose stories will be shared.
Top 50 musical hits from 1964 and 1965 will play from noon to 1 p.m. that day in the Pavilion. Current students will be able to develop their place in history at the selfie circle, outside the Pavilion where they can take photos of themselves wearing 50th anniversary buttons and send them to #CCPAT50.
New 50th Anniversary street banners installed for the occasion will line the poles along the Main Campus and the West, Northwest and Northeast Regional Centers, where student leaders will hand out cookies and soft pretzels to students and employees from Noon to 1 p.m. that afternoon.
Events scheduled throughout the coming year will be both solemn and festive. Dr. Generals will hold a homecoming meet-and-greet for alumni on October 29; U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Samuel Anthony Alito, Jr. will accept the Edward R. Becker Citizenship Award during an invitation-only event January 15; a panel discussion on the MOVE bombing is planned during Law & Society Week in February; and Dr. Generals will be inaugurated at 10:30 a.m. May 1 at Congregation Rodeph Shalom, 615 N. Broad Street.
The 50th Anniversary festivities culminate with an outdoor black-tie gala on the Main Campus on September 18, 2015 and our 50th Commencement in May, 2016.
Community College of Philadelphia was founded in 1964 after then-Mayor James H.J. Tate appointed 15 members to the board of trustees. On September 23, 1965, the College opened its doors in the annex of the old Snellenberg department store with an enrollment of 1,200. In 1973, the College moved from the eight-story building at 34 South 11th Street to 1700 Spring Garden Street, a building that formerly housed Philadelphia’s third U.S. Mint, built in 1901.
The Main Campus has grown to include seven major classroom and activity buildings; in addition, Regional Centers have been established to serve residents in Northeast, Northwest and West Philadelphia.
The Mint Building serves as the College’s administrative headquarters and houses a museum dedicated to the work of Gilroy Roberts, Ninth Chief Engraver for the U.S. Mint, who created the portrait of Robert F. Kennedy used to create the Kennedy half dollar. The Gilroy Roberts exhibit is located in the circular hallway of the Mint Building Rotunda and is free and open to the public.
Since it opened its doors, the College has served more than 685,000 students. It currently is the largest public institution of higher learning in Philadelphia and sixth largest in the state.
Community College of Philadelphia enrolls more than 34,000 credit and non-credit students. The College offers day, evening and weekend classes, as well as classes on the Internet. Visit the College at www.ccp.edu. Follow us on Twitter. Like us on Facebook.