A Clarkson Mosaic - page 381

Minimum Wage.
Effective January 1, 1975, the New York State Minimum Wage Rate was
increased from $2.00 per hour to $2.10 per hour. The Student Wage Rate for full-time Clarkson
students was increased from $1.70 per hour to $1.785 per hour. On December 28 of the same
year, the minimum was raised to $2.30 per hour, and the Clarkson student rate to $1.955 per
Clarkson ... This Week.
On September 1, 1975, the first edition of
Clarkson ... This Week
, a
campus-wide news circular, was distributed. Its objectives were to keep members of the
Clarkson community informed of activities across the campus and to aid in reducing the
quantity of paper previously used by individual memoranda to announce the many activities
taking place each week.
Student Prank.
To demonstrate pulleys during his lecture to freshmen, Prof. Ray Serway,
physics professor, hung several pulleys on a stout rope from one of the ceiling girders in lecture
hall 312 in the Science Center. He persuaded a slender freshman to sit in the sling at the end of
the rope, and then showed the class how easily the pulleys would lift a weight high into the air.
After the freshman resumed his seat, the class convinced Serway, a much heavier
person, to become the object of the experiment. Gleefully hauling him to the ceiling, the
freshmen then tied the rope securely to the demonstration stand in the front of the room and fled
from the class, leaving Prof. Serway dangling helplessly from the rope. History does not record
his reactions.
Dorms Named.
Dorms No. 5 and 6 were named in honor of two distinguished Clarkson men.
No. 6 was named in honor of John W. Graham, Jr., former president and chancellor of Clarkson
who died in 1974 at the inauguration of President Robert Plane. No. 5 was named for William
T. Price, Sr., of Coconut Grove, Florida, who had been awarded an honorary degree in 1974.
Ironically, the financial support of the College promised by Mr. Price never materialized.
Ted Ramsdell.
After 41 years of devoted service to Clarkson under nine College presidents,
Frederick N. (Ted) Ramsdell retired. One of 68 in the Class of 1933, Ted continued his
education at St. Lawrence where he earned his MA in education, only to return in 1934 to
become Clarkson's first registrar. Over the years he served the College as treasurer, director of
admissions, director of financial aid, and after 1952 was in charge of the Placement Service.
When he came to campus as a student in 1929, Clarkson had only one telephone, the
one in the president's office, with an extension in the business office. Having no dormitories in
1929, students had to find rooms in local residences. That, in fact, is how Ted got to Potsdam:
his mother had moved to the village in 1925 to operate a boarding house for the college
students. When he was a sophomore, Ted had the opportunity to move into the house of A. J.
Matthews, a retired school teacher who had built two homes at 71 and 73 Pierrepont Avenue.
During his retirement, Mr. Matthews had helped dozens of college students by housing them in
this home. In 1933, he gave Clarkson his home at 71 Pierrepont Avenue to be used as the home
of the president, and to be called "Hepburn House" in memory of his late wife, Mabelle
Hepburn. He died in November 1994.
Ted Ramsdell's wife, Iva, a 1934 graduate of Potsdam Normal, rescued the Clarkson
archives from oblivion in 1978 at the request of President Plane. Through her diligence and
perseverance, the archives currently house a substantial number of documents and artifacts
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