Spirit & Traditions: The University Pendant
Professor Tom Muir completed a ceremonial medallion for Bowling Green State University President Sidney Ribeau. This medallion replaces the one created in 1964 (see below).
The medallion created by Muir symbolizes the values of Ribeau's administration: intellectual, spiritual and creative growth; learning community; inquiry and discovery; and collaboration and collective effort. The design features three interlocking rings, set inside a set of concentric rings and encircled on the outside by coils. This reflects the interconnectedness of the university. In the center is a rutilated quartz sphere, resembling a mini-universe, and representing the university's global perspective. Both Muir and Ribeau were cognizant of the need to have it be at once contemporary and yet reflect traditional design so that in future years it would not not become dated. That, too, reflects the mission of the university, to have both a solid foundation while looking forward. The entire medallion was fabricated from sheet and wire, rather than relying on casting processes. The resulting medallion was more integrity and reflects a higher level of technical accomplishment.
A silver pendant containing the inaugural symbol and University seal was worn on ceremonial occasions by the President of Bowling Green State University, from the time of William T. Jerome to that of Sidney Ribeau. The medallion was created in 1964 by BGSU professor Carl D. Hall, depicting a "tree of knowledge" and symbolizing the university's growth at that time.
The inauguration symbol appears as an abstracted form within a bell-shaped triangle. The tree symbolizes growth and change. To some it may represent the Tree of Knowledge, with knowledge itself being characterized by growth and change.
The tree has a solid root structure that symbolizes stability and closeness to Mother Earth, or the necessary foundation in the fundamentals before branching out into full growth and change.