F&M Nevonian Society
All alumni who have celebrated the 50th anniversary of their graduation from the College (and the spouses and partners of such alumni) automatically become lifetime members of the Nevonian Society during the class's 50th reunion year.
Questions and Suggestions
Please contact Director of Alumni and Volunteer Engagement Donna Pflum at 717-358-4266 or firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or suggestions.
About the Nevonian Society
In 1840, Nevin accepted a position teaching in Mercersburg Seminary, a German Reformed institution. In 1841, he became president of Marshall College, a position in which he served until the union of Franklin College and Marshall College in 1853. Nevin then retired from public life for eight years before accepting a position as professor of the Philosophy of Science at Franklin & Marshall College in 1861. In 1866, he became the second President of Franklin & Marshall College and served in this capacity until his retirement in 1876. Nevin married Martha Jenkins in 1835. The Nevins had eight children. John Williamson Nevin died at his home in Lancaster, Pa. June 26, 1886.
During Nevin's early years as president of Franklin & Marshall, the College grew slowly both financially and in terms of the number of students and faculty on campus. This was largely due to the conflicting aims of the Reformed Church who founded other, competing educational institutions, such as Mercersburg College (1865) and Ursinus (1869), during Nevin's tenure. Still, Nevin's presidency produced many highlights, among them: the creation of an endowed professorship in English literature and the Audenried Endowed Professorship in History and Archaeology; the removal of the Theological Seminary from Mercersburg College grounds (resulting in the construction of Gerhart and Alumni houses for Seminary faculty); the construction of a separate building for the F&M Academy; and the construction of F&M's first dorm, Harbaugh Hall (all were constructed in 1871-72). Today, his legacy lives on in the lives of F&M's loyal alumni.
Franklin & Marshall is a residential college dedicated to excellence in undergraduate liberal education. Its aims are to inspire in young people of high promise and diverse backgrounds a genuine and enduring love for learning, to teach them to read, write and think critically, to instill in them the capacity for both independent and collaborative action and to educate them to explore and understand the natural, social and cultural worlds in which they live. In doing so, the College seeks to foster in its students the qualities of intellect, creativity and character, that they may live fulfilling lives and contribute meaningfully to their occupations, their communities and their world.
During the ceremony, each inductee signs the Nevonian Register, called "Prexy's Book" (named after Dr. Theodore "Prexy" Distler, former president of the College and first president of the Nevonian Society) and receives a unique lapel pin commemorating this milestone. The lapel pin displays the coat of arms for the families of both Benjamin Franklin and John Marshall.
The Nevonian Medal
This commitment can take many forms, including but not limited to: serving on committees, councils and other volunteer groups, staffing events, being an advocate and providing financial support.
The Medal is awarded annually to one (or more) alumnus or alumna or to his or her surviving spouse during the alumnus’ or alumna's reunion year, and presented at the Nevonian program in June. Recipients also become members of the Society of Distinguished Alumni.