I know an increasing number of people, perhaps of a certain age, who are saying the hell with it and celebrating their birthday for a week, month or more. Babson College has turned celebrating its birthday into an art form, but when you’re 100, you get to do what you want.
Babson officially turns 100 today, Sept. 3, and has been partying since the start of the year.
First, Babson College’s new Centennial Park, created to celebrate the Wellesley school’s 100th year in business, got a new name: Kerry Murphy Healey Park.
Then the giant Babson Globe was moved to the park over the winter, and now it spins again. It hadn’t done that in years.
In August, the school introduced a big bronze statue of its founder, Roger Babson, to the park.
Surrounding the whole park is a collection of world flags, which used to welcome library visitors. For now, there are 53 flags at the park, but Babson plans to fly 100 of them by the end of this academic year, sticking with the Centennial theme. The school explains that underground utility work delayed getting all 100 up at the start.
In an effort to represent its diverse and international student body, Babson has crunched some numbers and worked out a formula to represent everyone given there are more countries than flagpoles.
“Our student body and alumni network includes students from more than 80 countries and an international network with more than 41,000 alumni in 119 countries,” Babson writes on its park page.
“In the future, the flags flown in the park will always reflect countries of our students. Each semester a list of flags will be confirmed based on currently enrolled students. Whenever there are more countries than flagpoles available, the list of flags to be flown will be based on alphabetical order during the fall semester and reverse alphabetical order during the spring semester. This will ensure that the flags for all countries of current students will be flown at some time during each academic year.
“The Glavin Office of International Education, in cooperation with the Registrar’s Office, will confirm the list of flags within the first six weeks of each semester based on the Registrar’s final list of enrolled students. The USA, Commonwealth of Massachusetts and Babson flags will be flown continuously.”
Zakim Bridge tribute to Babson & more
Babson will crank its celebrations into high gear Sept. 18-22 in Boston and Wellesley, with events mainly catering to alumni. But those of us who are merely honorary Beavers can enjoy some of the action, too.
For example, the Zakim Bridge in Boston will be lit up green in honor of Babson later this month (I assumed this was something Babson would have had to pay for, but the state tells me that this is actually not the case). The Pru will go green, too.
Babson is touting its education over the years of the world’s leading industrial families, from the Fords to the Toyotas and Zildjians, not to mention newer business names like Arthur Blank of Home Depot, Alberto Perlman of Zumba Fitness and Polina Raygorodskaya of Wanderu.
Also on the agenda:
- $100,000 entrepreneur pitch competition
- Exhibition of original books and documents of Sir Isaac Newton