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I graduated from Castleton State College back in 1975 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice. I went back to campus for the first time in 31 years to see my old roommate, Anita Andreoletti Larson, who works for Castleton now. What a surprise it was to see all of the changes on campus. I didn’t know where I was half the time as Anita gave me the grand tour. (By the way, Anita makes a wonderful spokesperson for the college–she’s knowledgeable, outgoing and I think every single person we passed said hello to her!) So much has changed at Castleton, but it was clear that one thing hasn’t changed–the sense of community and closeness.
In 1975, there were four dorms (two for the boys and two for the girls), the dining hall, the gym, the library, Leavenworth and an administrative building, if I recall correctly. Oh, and a small frat house.
There was also a small burger place somewhere on campus, I don’t recall exactly where. I have to admit, my memory is not what it used to be! But I haven’t forgotten the experiences I had there. I still remember the name of every person who lived in our suite, who was dating who, the partiers, the intellectuals, etc. We really had to entertain ourselves as the town of Castleton closed down by 7:00 p.m. every night. If you had a car, you were lucky–you could drive into Rutland or Whitehall and get good food. And that was a real plus, as the food at the dining hall was really bad! I was quite impressed with your dining hall, not only the variety of good food that was available, but also the building itself. Quite a huge change from the huge, plain hall that served meatloaf with bread ties in it, hamburgers that we called “hockey pucks” and other assorted interesting items. We weren’t allowed to take food out of the cafeteria in those days and we were always thinking up ways to sneak food out for a sick roommate, or to eat later in the evening. We must not have been too successful, because I remember being hungry a lot back then! We were always excited for alumni and parent weekends because the chefs dressed up and carved huge pieces of meat in the dining room!
There was always a party somewhere on campus on the weekends. The “party dorms” were Wheeler (girls) and Adams (boys). Not that there wasn’t any partying going on in the other dorms. I lived in Morrill Hall and remember the girls upstairs making sangria out on the veranda–some always spilled as the night wore on and it dripped down onto our living room windows and the lawn. The nursing majors were the best partiers on campus! They were fearless, partied hard, and long. One year we actually had a drug bust and rumor has it that so many toilets were flushed on campus at the same time that the Red Dog lost water pressure! Anybody out there remember the Red Dog? The longest bar in Vermont. Wonder if it’s still there?
We partied hard, but we also studied hard. I was fortunate in that the girls in our suite all had different majors, so we all got to know a bit about each other’s education. My roommate, Anita, was an education major, we had an English major, a psychology major, physical education major, and criminal justice major, among others. I came away from Castleton State College with an excellent education, which has served me well over the years. I have very fond memories of the social life there and appreciate the education I received. There have been many physical changes, but I’m sure everyone is building their own memories of bad food, parties, roommates, boyfriends, girlfriends, good friends, study sessions, classes–some things never change!