During Baccalaureate Services on May 6, Davis & Elkins College students will receive their academic hoods and a memento of their time on campus. The Graduating Class Commemorative Medal, now a tradition at D&E, was designed for the class of 2022 by senior Elysia Cain of Clarksburg.
Cain, an art major and a digital media minor, was selected for the work by Assistant Professor of Art and Chair of the Division of Creative Arts Kevin “Woody” Woodcock.
The front face of the coin features Cain’s drawing of historic Albert Hall with the D&E letters on the hillside. The back face is inscribed with the College logo.
“Albert Hall is something everyone knows and it’s an icon of Davis & Elkins College,” Cain said of her decision to focus on the building for her design.
To create the work, Cain used Procreate on an iPad with an Apple pencil, a technique she learned in a class instructed by Macy Jackson in the Douglas and Gay Lane Digital Media Lab.
“It made it easier to get lines straight in the drawing,” Cain explained.
Cain developed her arts skills over her last three years at D&E. Initially, she was an exercise science major and says she had never taken an art class before stepping into the studio in Myles Center for the Arts.
“Macy and Woody have been so supportive,” she said. “On my fourth painting I was surprised at myself that I picked it up and excelled.”
Cain exhibited her photography and paintings in the Creative Arts Showcase on April 29 in Myles Center for the Arts. She also designed the pottery stamp for Adjunct Instructor Desire Watson’s creations and received an achievement award from the Division of Creative Arts during the annual Academic Awards and Recognition Convocation.
“She’s definitely blossomed into an artist,” Woodcock said. “She has talent and has really learned to make paintings come more alive.”
In addition to her work as an artist, Cain is a member of the Senator women’s tennis team.
The Graduating Class Commemorative Medal was introduced to the class of 2013. The idea and support came from former D&E Trustee Bill Sudbrink, an avid coin collector who also donated multiple Roman coins to The Stirrup Gallery which are displayed in the Howard-Sudbrink Collection. The medals serve as both a keepsake and a collector’s piece. Constructed of bronze, each year’s edition features a different theme.
In addition to graduates, coins are given to each member of the team responsible for the design, Sudbrink, the Davis & Elkins College archives and the Office of Student Life.
Sudbrink has also outlined a plan that will ensure the tradition continues and that others connected to the College have a chance to obtain a coin as well. Any remaining medals will be available for purchase for two years after being issued to any D&E alumnus and any member of the faculty, staff or board of trustees serving during that academic year. Any medals remaining after two years may be sold to the general public.
Davis & Elkins College Commencement Weekend includes the traditional Nurses’ Pinning Ceremony and two sessions Baccalaureate Service and Recognition of Graduates on Friday, May 6 and two Commencement Ceremonies on Saturday, May 7.