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The Times of Their Lives

Former Gov. Jim Hunt shares his memories of campus life for a new student leadership project. The project highlights more than 130 alumni.

Treat yourself to a history lesson or two on a new website created by NCSU Libraries to chronicle the personal experiences of some of the university’s top student leaders of the past.

The site, developed for the Student Leadership Initiative, uses oral histories, documents, photos and videos to bring their stories to life. It’s a priceless collection.

William Aycock (1935-36 student body president) explains what it was like at NC State at the height of the Great Depression and how his generation prepared for combat in Europe. William Friday (1941 senior class president) recalls the atmosphere on campus the day Pearl Harbor was attacked.

Former Gov. Jim Hunt (1957-59 student body president) pays homage to the faculty members who shaped his political thinking and showed him how the political system could improve people’s lives. Eric Moore (1970 Student Senate president) describes what campus life was like for black students in the late 1960s, and Cathy Sterling reflects on being the first woman to serve as NC State’s student body president in 1970-71.

Returning to campus after two years of service in the Vietnam War to see the student newspaper earnestly debating what types of sandwiches should be served in the cafeteria, Terry Carroll (1973-74 student body president) says he found an atmosphere of complacency that “put a fire in my gut” and inspired his attempts to awaken fellow students to what he saw as “a world on fire.”

The Student Leadership Initiative site highlights more than 130 former student leaders and provides video interviews with over 30 who share memories of their experiences on campus. The project will add new profiles as research continues.

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