Ring, Ring, Ring!

Tarleton ring celebrates history and tradition


While family weekend was filled with many activities, the official ring ceremony was among the most popular and brought many students, family, friends, and alumni to the Stephenville campus. After students received their ring on Sept. 16, pictures were taken at the ring statue located in front of the Lamar Johanson science building. The Purple Poo joined in to take pictures and sign the hands of ring recipients. 

The official Tarleton State University class ring is adorned with many traditions specific to the university’s history. The ring was designed by a committee of alumni and students. Placed at the top of the ring is the official Tarleton “T” enclosed by the university seal. The right side of the ring features the cannon and light poles placed in front of a large oak tree, with the recipient’s graduation year above. The left side of the ring features the administration building with two large oak leaves above, as well as the display of the recipients degree letters and series number.

The cannon, placed on the ring now serves as a landmark in front of the education building under a large oak tree. The cannon was used during World War I, then was later brought to Tarleton in 1922 to be used for ROTC training. During the 1920s, green light poles were installed on campus and have become a lasting staple. The campus also features 254 trees, the most popular being the oak tree. 

The Tarleton State University class ring is the first to feature the series number as part of its design. As rings are ordered a series number is etched on the outside, enhancing the tradition and meaning of the ring. 

During one’s undergraduate, the ring is to be worn with the “T” facing the student. Once the student walks the stage and receives their degree, university president James Hurley will then order students to turn their ring with the “T” facing the world, symbolizing sharing the ring holder’s passion with others and a stepping stone to having earned a degree.  

One honorable Tarleton alum, Mike Chandler, 1970 graduate, wore his Tarleton ring everyday with pride. Chandler served over 45 years with the Air Force and NASA. After his passing, his family was given the opportunity to send two of his most valued items to the international space station and back. His wife, Gabrielle, chose to send his Tarleton class ring because it was one of the things that meant the most to him. 

The Tarleton class ring connects past, present, and future Texans. It is the opportunity to strike up a conversation with a fellow Texan that shows pride in Tarleton. The class ring represents one’s hard work and dedication and the support family, friends, and faculty have provided. Whether you have your ring, or are soon to get yours, it is a firm reminder that the gates are always open.