North Central College - Naperville, IL

College kicks off Sesquicentennial Celebration with Cornerstone Week events

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A promising start
A promising start

North Central College invites the community to celebrate its Sesquicentennial kickoff by taking part in Cornerstone Week events May 16-21.

Cornerstone Week celebrates the anniversary of the College's 1870 move from Plainfield to Naperville and the laying of the cornerstone for Old Main, the iconic limestone structure that housed all campus operations for its first 30 years in Naperville. This year's event takes on additional meaning as Cornerstone Week officially kicks off the College's celebration of its Sesquicentennial, marking the 150th anniversary of the first day of classes on Nov. 11, 1861.

Sesquicentennial kickoff highlights during Cornerstone Week include:

  • Town & Gown Walking Tour
    This walking tour of the campus and neighborhood surrounding North Central College will explore the history and architecture while highlighting buildings, instructors and alumni of the college as it celebrates its 150th anniversary this year. The tour will be held from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Sunday, May 15 and begins on the west side of Old Main, 30 N. Brainard St. All ages welcome. Tickets are $12 per person; $10 Naperville Heritage Society Sustaining members. Call 630-420-6010.
  • Honors Day
    Beginning at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, May 17, in Wentz Concert Hall at the Fine Arts Center, 171 E. Chicago Ave. The daylong event includes a keynote address by a distinguished visiting scholar, the 14th annual Rall Symposium for Undergraduate Research and the 35th annual Honors Convocation, when top scholars are recognized for achievement. Keynote speakers are North Central alumni Dr. K. Darrell Berlin, class of 1955, and Dr. Doris Mangiaracina Benbrook, class of 1981. Berlin is a cancer researcher, the first Regents Professor named at Oklahoma State University and a special consultant to the National Institutes of Health. Benbrook is a professor at the University of Oklahoma where she serves as Director of the Women's Cancer Program.
  • Breakfast with Riverwalk Foundation
    At 7:30 a.m. Wednesday, May 18, in Wentz Concert Hall and public unveiling of planned beautification improvements to the North Central Riverwalk Gateway and Sesquicentennial Walk Way (the southwest gateway near Fredenhagen Park and the pedestrian spine an alleyway between Brainard and Loomis streets from Benton to Jefferson avenues).
  • Documentary Debut
    A screening at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 18, in Madden Theatre at the Fine Arts Center, 171 E. Chicago Ave., of the first segment of "A Promising Start," a five-part documentary capturing North Central's 150-year history, produced in conjunction with Naperville Community Television. Watch the trailer.
  • Pictoral Book Release
    The release of a new, expanded edition of "North Central College: A College in its Community," featuring additional photographs of campus by renowned photographer Chuck Savage.
  • Women's Chorale
    A performance by the College's Women's Chorale at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 19, in Wentz Concert Hall. Tickets are $5/adults, $3/students and senior citizens; visit or call 630-637-SHOW (7469).
  • Commemorative Sign
    The unveiling on Friday, May 20, of a sign commemoratively renaming a stretch of Chicago Avenue as North Central College Avenue.
  • Cornerstone Celebration
    A ceremony in Wentz Concert Hall on Friday, May 20, during which Sesquicentennial medals will be presented to people who have helped shape the College and Naperville community.
  • Springfest
    The annual student celebration on Saturday, May 21, followed by an 8 p.m. performance by Chicago rock band The Ides of March in Pfeiffer Hall, 320 E. Benton Ave. Tickets are $35, $30 and $25; visit or call the box office at 630-637-SHOW (7469).

Visit the Sesquicentennial calendar  for information on numerous Sesquicentennial events planned for Cornstone Week, throughout 2011 and into 2012.   Or, visit for other Sesquicentennial information, updates and features.


Architectual perspective of Carnegie  Pedistrian Corridor  Rall Symposium Poster Presentation