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A Tradition Begins



A Cornell alum steps aboard the Orient-Express bound for Venice. A passenger across the aisle spies her ring, unmistakably a Cornell class ring, and starts up a conversation about life on the Hilltop.

A young alum, wearing the new class ring his parents purchased as a graduation gift, shows up for his first day of work at a Chicago bank. A senior banker notices the ring and welcomes him, saying he, too, is a Cornellian.

These stories are not real—yet. When Cornell unveils its first official class ring this spring, it will introduce the potential, and the power, to connect Cornellians as they work and play worldwide. The ring, crafted with a large gold “C” atop an amethyst stone, is designed to be recognizable from a distance.

Alumni Board president Julia Gutz ’88 spearheaded the quest for a Cornell ring. She brought together a committee of students, alumni, staff, parents, and a trustee to determine the characteristics that define Cornell, and thus the official ring. The three visual elements that all committee members agreed on were the large “C,” the color purple, and a King Chapel etching that appears on one side of the ring. The wearer’s class year or degree appears on the opposite side.

To view and order a Cornell ring, link to the campus bookstore site from, or call the bookstore at (319) 895-4378.

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