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The Appalachian

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The Appalachian

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124 years of App State: Founder’s Day recognizes SGA president

Courtesy+of+Brent+James
Courtesy of Brent James

One thing continually ran through the mind of the SGA President JP Neri Thursday morning as he approached the Founder’s Bell: “Don’t mess it up.” 

“Gosh, I never thought I’d have the opportunity to do something like that, and it was just an incredible honor and a privilege to be able to ring the bell,” said Neri, a junior history major. 

At 9:30 a.m. Neri, along with five App State alums, former faculty and staff, and community members, was inducted into the Bell Ringer’s Society on the 124th Founder’s Day.

Chancellor Sheri Everts giving remarks to a crowd of onlookers during the ceremony. (Courtesy of Brent James)

While he said he felt some slight nerves and anxiety over the straightness of his tie, the overwhelming feeling was excitement. 

Neri spends the majority of his time serving the App State student body and the community. Along with being the 57th student body president, Neri is also a Chancellor’s scholar, the fundraising coordinator for App Builds a Home and a member of the board of trustees. 

Each year during the Founder’s Day celebration one student is inducted into the Bell Ringer’s Society to represent the current student body. 

“It felt really powerful,” Neri said. “I think, you know, the student body is so rich and so diverse and it’s been a pleasure and a privilege and an honor to be able to represent the student body.”

The other members inducted into the Bell Ringer’s Society included former Chancellor Harvey Durham, Judge Rebecca Eggers-Gryder and App State employees Bruce and Linda Guy. 

“Founder’s Day is an important time for us to reflect on the past and also to consider how future generations will remember the present. It’s up to each of us to foster a university community of which BB, DD and Lillie Dougherty would be proud,” said Associate Professor Karl Campbell during the ceremony. 

The bell-ringing ceremony lasted around 30 minutes and was followed by a poster session and lecture titled “Innovation and Sustainability at Appalachian: Past, Present and Future.” 

Those celebrating Founder’s Day also had the opportunity to meet the university’s Team Sunergy and take a look at their award-winning solar energy vehicle. 

“Thank you to the chancellor for allowing me to be honored in this way and to celebrate the future, the past and the present of Appalachian. I look forward to many more years of the best university in the world,” Neri said.

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About the Contributor
Siri Patterson, News Editor
Siri Patterson (she/her/hers) is a junior journalism major with a minor in political science. This is her second year writing for The Appalachian.
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