PAUL SMITHS, N.Y. – The 75th anniversary of Paul Smith’s College is underway as the College of the Adirondacks celebrates its position as one of the iconic educational institutions in Northern New York.
Phelps Smith, son of (Apollos) Paul Smith who passed in 1937, founded the college through his bequest. It was his father Paul who built the Paul Smith’s Hotel in 1859, one of the first resorts in the Adirondacks.
The college’s first class matriculated in 1946. Two and four-year degrees are offered in environmental sciences, hospitality, forestry, business, and a new Master’s degree in natural resource management rounds out the academic offerings. Most recently, it has committed to a sport and education initiative whereby PSC has developed official working relationships with USA Nordic and US Biathlon. Student/athletes in those sports can attend PSC, train right outside their dorm rooms, and simultaneously pursue an education.
Paul Smith’s College has an international impact as some 14,000 graduates live in all 50 American states and abroad. The school is active in recruiting youth to their Adirondack campus, and retaining some of them as productive members of the North Country community. In this endeavor, the college contributes over $67 million to the regional economy.
“The 75th anniversary of Paul Smith’s College is a wonderful milestone celebrating its many educational, cultural and social contributions to the Adirondack Region,” said Senator Dan Stec. “The visionary founder whose generosity led to the college’s creation, and many others who through the years have supported and expanded the college’s mission in countless ways, is a tremendous legacy that will be built on in the decades ahead. I am honored to represent this incredible college and to advocate on its behalf in our State Capitol.”
Senator Stec officially proclaimed July 18-25 as Paul Smith’s College 75th Anniversary Celebration. In conjunction, PSC Alumni Reunion Weekend, canceled in 2020 due to the pandemic, took place July 23-25.
To mark the occasion, Paul Smith’s College created a beautiful, 36-page commemorative publication to be distributed in the Adirondack Daily Enterprise, Lake Placid News, Plattsburgh Press-Republican and Tupper Lake Free Press. PSC alumni will receive this document in digital format.
Photo: Guides at Paul Smith’s, Paul Smith’s College’s Joan Weill Adirondack Library Archives
Here are a couple of old memories from my time a a student at Paul Smith’s College (1961- 1963) studying forestry.
One day during our summer camp (June 27, 1962), I woke up to see the smoldering ruins of the old hotel where we forestry students had been required to eat dinner occasionally – including having to WEAR A JACKET and TIE! This was to provide the hotel students some respectable looking people to practice on as part of their course work. The hotel was the center of campus life with both the post office and Dr. Buxton’s office etc. all housed there. I had walked past this historic hotel building endless times, summer and winter, on my way from Dorm #5 to classes and to the cafeteria. These are memories that I will never forget.
On a happier topic, I also remember our chemistry professor “Doc” Pickett? Eery week he called the students to order in his booming voice to begin our weekly assembly up at the gym with; “YOUR ATTENTION PLEASE!” His voice was loud enough to shut down a couple of hundred student conversations going on in the bleachers. His memory also sticks with me from all the mornings that I heard him whistling loudly as he walked across the quad. on his way to teach his classes. He was just one of the many unique people whose personalities made PSC so memorable.
Add these to the memories of so many people whose lives were changed for the better by their time spent at Paul Smith’s College.
‘81. Gould Hoyt. Dean Rutherford, Collins, Strack, Kudish, Hamilton. Awesome school. Great education.