Larry Stewarton Jun 05
For those unfamiliar with the totem pole, it was part of the original estate purchased in 1957 for the college campus. The Warrior mascot was chosen based upon its existence and the yearbook was named the Totem Pole when the college opened. The totem pole appeared on numerous college catalogs and publications for many years. The totem pole, rather than an Indian figure, normally served as the mascot symbol, and in a sense was a type of college logo for nearly 40 years. The totem pole was removed from campus about 10 years ago because some felt it was connected to pagan worship. Most historians disagree and simply consider it a form of recording ancient family history. In nearly 4 decades, I have known less than 10 people who considered the totem pole problematic, and I suspect that all but one of those individuals were influenced by the case made against it 10 years ago. Coach Shinsky carefully restored the totem pole at that time, and it stood in his back yard until recently. The totem pole has suffered severe weather damage, as seen in the web site photos. After seeing the totem pole during a reunion, the class of 1962 volunteered to raise funds to restore the campus symbol. They have done a marvelous job with that effort. The funds were given specifically for that project because of their desire to see this part of the college's heritage preserved. The funds could not be used for any other purpose. The funds raised include not only the amount needed to have the totem pole professionally restored by an artisan, but funds to build a large case that will display the totem pole, old uniforms, and other items connected to the college's history as the Warriors. If you have further questions, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gueston Jun 03
While I enjoyed seeing the totem pole on the island it was never a 'symbol' of the college to me. Those things lie in the friendships and memories that were made on that campus. Maybe it would be more fitting that a cross be erected on the island...as a reminder to what the heart of the college was focused on. But the 'real' monument - for me anyway - on campus will always be the rock and tree dedicated to Ron Luckett.
Gueston Jun 02
That's a lot of money to be spending on some carved up piece of wood. As a christian, I am offended because it seems as we are being encouraged to restore and reincarnate a mistake that was made in the first place. I'm sure God wouldn't be pleased with the decision to create an idol and mock him all at the same time. We need better books in the library, better programs & activities, more money for grants and scholarships, but this is how the resources are being put to use. As a current student, I am discouraged. We need more pychology classes and more options in general to be able to choose from, but it looks like we really don't have a say in how the money gets spent around here. What's going to happen next! Are they going to make all tradition students recieve "the MARK OF THE BEAST"
Gueston Jun 02
No matter how it was phrased, no matter how or why the totem pole was damaged, the good news is the toem pole will be restored and placed in a case as a part of the college's history. Thank you to those who donated and restored a part of the college's history.
Gueston Jun 02
I thought that the totem pole was taken down by people at the college who thought having it there was like "idol worship." I'm surprised to see the damage being attributed to weather and not people.
Gueston May 29
This is great to see and experience....the Totem Pole is a symbol of the earliest days of the College's history and brings to mind all of the wonderful people who sacrificed immeasureably to see that a Christian school would be established in the northern states. We hope that others will join us in supporting Rochester College and it's sacred mission in the years ahead.
Wayne and Darlene (Pobur) Baker, Class of 1962