Last spring, Dale Brown, secondary education senior and president of the Student Alumni Association, and Matt Owen, political science senior, met to discuss new tradition ideas to implement for the 70th anniversary of IU Southeast.
Brown, Owen and fellow members of the SAA came up with the tradition of burying a time capsule on campus.
“We thought a time capsule would be a great tradition for the campus because it is a collaboration and a larger connectivity for the organizations and university departments,” Brown said. “It’s a great way for student alumni to look back and see the university from the past.”
The time capsule will be re-opened in 25 years.
“We decided to make the time capsule opening date 25 years from now because, by then, the items may be unique and have aged a bit,” Brown said. “In addition to that, the individuals who chose those items for the time capsule would more than likely still be around 25 years later to see it re-opened.”
Every five years, Brown said the SAA plans to put together another time capsule.
“We chose to add another time capsule every five years so every student who completes their tenure at IU Southeast will have a chance to put something in the time capsule and leave their mark on the campus.”
In the last few weeks of the spring semester, the SAA reached out to other campus organizations and asked each group to donate an item for the time capsule that symbolized their cause or purpose for the campus.
Several organizations, such as the Gamer Society, the Non-Traditional Student Union and the Student Veteran’s Organization, donated various items that represented their group.
The Gamer Society donated a PlayStation console with accessories and a game. Members of the society also signed the console before donating it to the time capsule.
The Non-Traditional Student Union donated a photo of their group during the spring planting project of 70 trees. Most organizations on campus were offered an opportunity to plant a tree in their organization’s name. Each organization that participated was able to place a ribbon with their organization’s name around a limb of the tree they planted.
“The original ribbons from the organization tree planting project will be put into the time capsule,” Brown said. “That way, if an organization was not able to donate an item for the time capsule, they are still accounted for and remembered by the time capsule.”
The Student Veteran’s Organization donated a book about Medal of Honor recipients. What made this book unique was the signature of Herself Woodrow “Woody” Williams, the oldest Medal of Honor recipient from the Battle of Iwo Jima during World War II.
Along with his signature, Williams also wrote what he thought life would be like in 25 years.
“In 25 years, our automobiles will not require a driver to operate the car,” Williams wrote. “Most of our teaching and learning will be from our homes with electronics.”
There were certain criteria each organization had to follow when choosing an item for the time capsule. Explosives, flammable items and items that could mold were not permitted inside the time capsule. Also, each item had to fit a certain size criteria due to the time capsule’s limited amount of space.
Every organization that submitted an item was approved by the committee of SAA officers to go into the time capsule.
Chancellor Sandra Patterson-Randles donated an acorn that came from the tree that was used to carve the Grenadier statue that resides in the IUS Library.
The acorn symbolizes the campus of IU Southeast as it started off small and grew into a large, strong university.
Like the Grenadier statue, the time capsule will reside in the IUS Library, as well.
“We decided to keep the time capsule in doors to protect it better, It is risky to actually bury the time capsule because of the uncertainty of how the items will hold up underground,”
Marty Rosen, director of Library Services, said the time capsule will be placed in a secure location in the lower level of the Library that will serve as a safe haven for the time capsule. This location will also still be accessible 25 years from now.
“I think this is an exciting project,” Rosen said. “Dale has immerged as a quiet, but very effective leader for this campus. I’m pleased he chose [the IUS Library] to be the settling place for the time capsule. It will be a great legacy for the campus.”
The IU Alumni Association paid for the time capsule; however, Brown said he hopes the time capsule can eventually help fund itself.
The SAA donated an IU cheerleader Barbie from 1996. The Barbie is still in the original box, and Brown said he is hoping the Barbie could eventually be auctioned off as it ages and becomes an antique to provide a fundraising option for the time capsule.
Brown said he is waiting on a few more significant items to put into the time capsule before it is sealed.
One of the items Brown is waiting for is a letter of intention that describes the purpose and intention of the time capsule, which will also include a list of each item inside the time capsule and the organization the item symbolizes.
In addition to the letter, Brown said he plans to put a journal inside the time capsule.
“The journal asks students, faculty and staff to recall something they thought was important in this academic year,” he said. “It could be anything, not necessarily IU Southeast related. It also asks what people think life will be like in 25 years.”
Brown said the purpose of the time capsule is to help alumni reconnect with the university.
By COURTNEY MCKINLEY