Alum and Faculty Member Designs New Way to Express Arcadia Pride

By Purnell T. Cropper | March 27, 2012

They have started to show up on blouses and jackets—and they are spreading around the globe, wherever proud members of the Arcadia family can be found—the new “Arcadia Gateway Pin.”

They are being worn by Resident Directors of The College of Global Studies in Dublin, Edinburgh and London; by alumnae in Florida; by members of the Class of 1967 who joined their classmate Lee Merrill  Byrd for “Beauty is a Verb”; by alumni who attended receptions with President Carl (Tobey) Oxholm III in Rye, N.Y., and Glen Ridge, N.J.; and, as word gets out, by increasing numbers of faculty, deans and administrators.

The pin was designed by Maryann Worrell ’05, Adjunct Professor of Art and Design, teaching metals, jewelry and studio foundations, with assistance from senior Brendan Hendrick ’12, who helped translate her sketches into digital format. “I received a call from Art Department Chair Bob Mauro in October,” says Worrell. “He told me that the President wanted help designing a new pin for Arcadia. Since jewelry is my field, I was excited. We met, and he described his concept. I went back to the studio and created a pin in metal for him to look at. We discussed it and refined the concept, and I gave him several variations to choose from. He then made the final selection. The rest is history.”

Several trustees, alumni, and university leaders also participated in the selection, including the Steering Committee of the Arcadia University Alumni Association, who gave it a unanimous thumbs-up. “We all really liked the clean and bold design, expressed in our school colors of scarlet and grey,” says Faye Senneca 59, Steering Committee Chair.

The idea for the pin started last August, when President  Oxholm had his official “welcome to Arcadia” photo taken at the historic archway to the Glenside campus that is next to the gate house that is now Blankley Alumni House. As he explained in his inaugural letter to the community, he sees Arcadia as a “gateway to the world”—welcoming the neighborhood and the world to our campus and through which our students will go to find their futures. The archway is a symbol of that, and of the fact that academia is open to the search for truth: like the Arcadia arch, it has no doors.

“I think I’d always admired the architecture of the gateway,” says Worrell. “Knowing that an arc is one of the strongest forms in architecture, I think that it really reads as a strong design element for the University….We’re located in the keystone state and the arch has the keystones in it. It also has that very ‘castle’ design as well, and it still plays with that perfectly,” says Worrell.

“I was an older student when I came back to school,” adds Worrell. “I graduated in 2005, and I’ve been teaching here since 2006. This is like my family, so this is awesome.” She majored in jewelry and earned her Art Education certification as well. Her mentors included Karen Misher and Bob Mauro. “I came in as a painting major, and the first time I played with fire I was like stop the presses, this is what I need to be doing.” Worrell has expanded her repertoire from small jewelry pieces to much large steel and mixed media work and sculpture.

“I hope we can get all of our alumni proudly wearing the pin,” says the President. Watch for the pin and your chance to have one, too!