Blue and Gold Blue and Gold Winter Edition 2020 | Page 4

Capehart’s Corner Dear Bluefieldian, When the “Bluefield Colored Institute” was created by an act of the West Virginia legislature in 1895, it also appropriated money to buy land, construct a building, hire a president, faculty and staff. How much money? $8,000. That’s it. It was enough to buy four acres of land, build Mahood Hall and hire Hamilton Hatter as the first “administrator” and Miss Mary Booze as his assistant. (As an African American, Hatter was not allowed to be called “president.”) The Institute would not see another dime of state money for six years. But through extraordinary leadership, courage and just plain hard work, the school got started. Its initial class was forty, 20 boys and 20 girls. Why am I bothering you with dusty old history? Because 125 years later, you are the living legacy to the tenacity and resilience that has defined our college since its birth. Robin Capehart, President Chances are you may be the first in your family to attend college. The first to earn a diploma. welcome to capehart’s c o r n e r President Capehart will share news about 4 BLUE AND GOLD The first to enter a career path that could take you far from Bluefield and family. If so, my guess is your tenacity and resilience got tested many times along the way. More than 90% of our students receive financial aid; many receive aid packages that pay for their entire tuition and related expenses. Many of you already worked jobs and raised families as well. To get your Bluefield State degree you needed, and received, assistance. That, too, is part of our BSC DNA; hands up, not hands out. As you go forward with your life and career, I’m asking you to be one of those Blues extending a hand up to those who follow. This anniversary year is our chance to look back – and look forward. Bluefield State is growing. With added enrollment. With upgraded facilities. And, soon, new dormitories. Here’s your chance to help us take the next steps towards our next anniversary. If you know how important your BSC experience was to you, then you’ll know how important it is to those coming after you. It doesn’t matter how much you give. That you want to help is far more important. Finally, I’d like to hear from you. Tell me what being a Blue has meant to you. Here’s my personal email address: We’ve come a long, long way from 1895. Let’s see how much farther we can go. You persevered. Bluefield State with you in each issue. You succeeded. As important, he wants to hear from you. Share a memory from your years here. Tell him what you’re up to now. And forever you are part of the proud family of “Blues” who now number more than 12,000. But you didn’t do it alone. WINTER 2020 5