To commemorate the College’s legacy, the Annandale Campus held an End-of-the-Year Holiday Luncheon Celebrating NOVA’s 50th Anniversary on December 16, in the Forum of the Ernst Community Cultural Center. The event was attended by hundreds of campus faculty and staff.
“This was a wonderful opportunity for the Campus to come together and have fun celebrating NOVA’s 50th anniversary and the end of another semester,” said Annandale Campus Interim Provost Charlotte Calobrisi.
Calobrisi handed the task of organizing the event to Provost Office Coordinator Claudia Chirinos, who formed a committee of campus staff to help with the decorations and events. Committee members included Provost Office Executive Assistant Hamdi Abdi, Campus Renovations Coordinator Cheryl Robinette, Community Outreach Specialist Bob Hull, Advising Specialist Maureen Lawson and Veterans Advisor Audra Morris.
A buffet lunch of traditional holiday foods was served and dining tables were decorated with white tablecloths draped with green or gold runners with centerpieces of pine tree sprigs around electric candle lit balls of light in vases. Each of the 15 tables also had two photographs of students at the Northern Virginia Technical College in 1965 taken from NOVA’s first yearbook.
The room was decorated with banners showing similar photographs and 50th anniversary posters and retractable signs. There were also posters showing Motor Trend magazine’s 1965 “Car of the Year” (GM’s entire Pontiac Division), the Time magazine cover showing the 1965 “Man of the Year” (President Lyndon Johnson), and one that displayed the top 10 network television shows in September 1965 and the top 10 grossing films of 1965.
There was also a poster displaying the top 10 singles for the week ending September 25, 1965 (two days before the college opened), as compiled by Cash Box magazine, and another showing the popular “Top 40” AM radio stations in the area in 1965. The music played during the luncheon was from those top 10 singles.
“It is so nice to see colleagues enjoying themselves and engaging in joyful conversations during the end-of-the-year luncheon,” Campus Operations Director Rizwan Rahman said. “We had a good turn out and the coordinating staff members did a fantastic job making the event fun and engaging.”
Several events occurred during the luncheon, including a 50th anniversary themed dessert competition, a 50th anniversary Kahoot quiz challenge that included 20 questions, half of them about Northern Virginia Technical College and the other half about popular culture from 1965, and a musical gifts competition for new or re-purposed wrapped and unlabeled gifts worth no more than $10.
“Thank you to all who came and participated,” said Chirinos. “To the committee that pulled this together: ‘Thank you to a great team!’”