A National Campaign, a New Provost,
the Beck Report, and Cable
What has been our motto and our ideal since 1834 is now required to become fact
rather than principle. . . . Never have this institution’s seal and promise been so apt for
a generation of its graduates. The ultimate test of your education at Wake Forest will be
its adequacy to this remarkable challenge. May Pro Humanitate not be a token on the
seal of your diploma on your home or office wall, but a guide to your life as the nation
and world turn to your generation for new initiative and leadership.
Thomas K. Hearn Jr., May 21, 1991;
Charge to the Graduates, Wake Forest University Commencement
ntil 1990–1991, Wake Forest had engaged in only two capital campaigns and
had had only one provost. It had run a squeaky-clean athletic program and
students had been active on and off campus in a number of ways and in
a number of movements. The first two of those characteristics were about to change.
The third and fourth were altered slightly as the faculty took a more active part in
helping the University continue to have an athletic program with integrity, and the
introduction of cable into the residence halls altered the way some students inter-
acted with their peers and the outside world.
In Wake Forest’s first capital campaign, President Harold Tribble in the 1940s
and 1950s raised funds to construct the new campus. It was an exhausting and drain-
ing experience for nearly everyone involved, especially Tribble. When he retired in
1967, he could truly say: “I am tired. I am very tired.” The second national campaign
the University ran was a smashing success and a joyful experience tied to its 150th
anniversary. It was, however, modest. Starting a few years before the marker date of
1984, when Wake Forest celebrated its sesquicentennial, the $17 million goal was
surpassed by more than $5 million. Still, compared to most major universities, the
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