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A documentary puzzle

Did you know February is considered UAA’s birthday month?

I’m not sure how official that is, but in the spirit of it, I have a documentary puzzle for you. The first Anchorage Community College commencement ceremony was held in 1956. One graduate: Vincent Demarest.

Vincent Demarest receiving his diploma from Dr. LeRoy Good.

Vincent Demarest receiving his diploma from Dr. LeRoy Good.

Here’s the puzzle: we don’t have a program from that event. Was there a program?

We have most of the following years for both ACC and UAA, but 1956? I haven’t seen one. The early ACC records are, well, sporadic would be the kindest term. Starting in the early 1970s we have a nearly comprehensive set in the UAA and ACC records but for before that? The commencement programs we have from 1957 through the late 1960s all came from a faculty member’s papers, not from university records. The faculty member in question, Sally Monserud (you’ll recognize her name from one of the buildings on campus) had a fairly good collection of early commencement programs, and we have a photo of her in attendance at the 1956 commencement so we know she was there.

Sally Monserud at the 1956 ACC commencement ceremony.

Sally Monserud at the 1956 ACC commencement ceremony.

But no program. Was there a program? Does anybody know? If you know the answer yes/no or even better, might have a copy of the 1956 program if there was one, will you let us know?

In the meantime, if you’re interested in seeing the commencement programs for the early years of Anchorage Community College, they are now online in picturingUAA. They’re here, with the exception of 1967 which Sally Monserud did not have in her collection.

Oh, by the way, those photos in this post are all in picturingUAA and you can find them by searching commencement from the home page. We don’t have a comprehensive group of commencement-related photographs on that site yet, but a few years are represented. And quite a variety of photographs for which we don’t know the year, so if you spot something familiar, be sure to use the link on the page to tell us more about the photograph.

[Note: Due to a cost increase for PicturingUAA, all images that were once available on PicturingUAA have been moved to Alaska’s Digital Archives. We also have many more images within our physical holdings. Please contact us if you have any questions.]

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