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Browse personal recollections and stories from the past 50 years of FAU.

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I was probably one of the first few people hired at Florida Atlanta University on September 18, 1962. I had just recently graduated from what is now called Prospect Hall School of Business (Hollywood, Florida). Looking for a job, I had read several times in the newspaper about Florida Atlantic University, a new school opening in Boca Raton. I decided that is where I wanted to work. When I called to see about an interview, only President Kenneth Williams and his assistant, Barbara Rich, were there. They were not hiring just yet. So I took another job which I ended up hating and resigned.

A few months later I again called and spoke with Barbara. This time, she said that they had just hired S. Leonard Singer to be Director of Learning Resources, and he would need someone. I went up and interviewed and got the job. We worked out in the old Army barracks off of 20th street. Soon other people were hired: Dean Simmons, College of Education, and his secretary, Thelma Pogue; Dean Craig, College of Science, and his secretary, Claire. The Army barracks began to fill up with new people, and eventually ground was broken to build the new university. I remember taking a tour of the new buildings that we would move into – our new Learning Resources Center, the Library, which was just across from the Learning Resources Center, and the Administration Building.

President John F. Kennedy was to give the dedication of the new university, but it was not to be. I remember exactly where I was standing in those Army barracks when we got the news that President Kennedy had been shot. We all gathered outside of President Williams' office to hear that the President was dead. So President Johnson was to give the dedication speech. All of us went to the dedication, and there were security guards on the roofs of the buildings and lined up on the streets.

I worked for S. Leonard Singer until he resigned to accept a position at Brandeis University. He told me I should hitch my wagon to Mr. Future and go to Boston to work with him up there. However, my husband to be, Richard A. Lasco, was in Florida Atlantic University's first opening classes. So I did not go to Boston. I stayed at Florida Atlantic University and worked for Dr. Myron R. Blee, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and Director of Learning Resources until April 25,1966. My husband and I got married on December 18, 1965. Len Singer came back from Boston and was best man at our wedding.

I am a little fuzzy on names after all these years, but Herb Evans, Harold Riehle, Edith Whitlock, Dorothy Sohn were people who worked there during that time and were at my wedding. Len Singer, who now resides in Kendall, Florida, still exchanges Christmas cards with us, and Myron Blee and I kept up with each other until just a few years ago. So when I think of Florida Atlantic University, I think of those old Army barracks, all the people I worked with, watching ground be broken on a new university, knowing FAU is where I was when I learned of President Kennedy's death, and happy that FAU was the place I met my husband that I have been married to for over 45 years. We live in Atlanta now with three grown, successful children, a retired military life from the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps mostly with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, everything did begin at FAU.

Karen Blaha Lasco and Richard A. Lasco, Ph.D. (graduate in FAU's first class)
Dacula, Georgia

Henderson My story is I lived and went to college in Broward County in 1973. Graduated from UF in 1985 and sent our older son to FAU in 2008. So as our older son had his fun at FAU in 2008-2009 little did I know that younger son Dylan would be attending FAU in Fall 2011. Go Owls!

The fun part is, in 2008 younger son Dylan and older dad Jeff test drove a $55,000 Lotus Elite from Delray, seriously considering the purchase, and drove it to older son Jarrett's Heritage Towers dorm. Got out of the car and took a picture of Dylan standing next to the Lotus in front of Heritage Towers. Go Owls! Now flash forward: Younger son Dylan will be staying his freshman year at FAU in Heritage Towers.

Enjoy the pictures of Dylan standing next to the Lotus Elite in front of Heritage in 2008 and today next to his 64 Red Corvair Monza in 2011. Look for him on campus or at the beach.

Jeff Henderson

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