Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

August 23, 2013

75 years of ACTC history in montage

Mike James
The Independent

ASHLAND — A Youtube video originally produced to show at Ashland Community and Technical College’s autumn staff conference features photo memories from the college’s rich 75-year history, including images from when the college was in its former downtown building.

Viewers will see the college when it was Ashland Junior College and housed in the castle-like building on Central Avenue that until recently was the home of the Ashland Independent School District.

They also will see views of the Ashland Vocational School, in a building some will recognize as the current Ashland school bus garage.

There are pictures of students in 1940s fedoras lounging on the college steps, 1950s ducktails and rolled jean cuffs in a carpentry shop and 1980s big hair at primitive computer terminals.

Other photos show faculty and college activities.

The montage was pulled together from college archives by Jennifer Criswell, a local photographer and office assistant in ACTC’s Workforce Solutions department.

Criswell sifted through 15 boxes with about 300 photos and documents in each box to come up with about 50 that effectively portray college history. “I was looking for pictures that show how the college has changed over the years,” she said.

She included among the pictures some pertinent documents, including the cover of the 1940 commencement program and a page from the 1941 Portico, which was Ashland Junior College’s yearbook.

The montage debuted at ACTC’s 2013 all-college meeting, an annual gathering of virtually every staffer at the college. “Everybody loved it. A lot of people said they wanted to see it on the web,” Criswell said.

The images have personal interest to many staffers because about half of them are graduates or at least attended the college, said ACTC spokesman John McGlone. But they also would be interesting to the community at large because the college is a part of the community, he said. “The significance of this is that people have dedicated their careers to the college and the community and they are still here,” he said.

McGlone is working on another production, this one to include interviews with graduates spanning the decades. He is looking for more graduates, especially from earlier decades and particularly those who attended the Ashland Vocational School.

Alumni interested in participating may call McGlone at 326-2466 or  email john.mcglone@kctcs.edu.

The montage is on Youtube at youtube.com/watch?v=K8gqjyv2q3s. ACTC also has a link to the montage on its Facebook page.

MIKE JAMES can be reached at mjames@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2652.