I came to the historic St. Francis Xavier University campus to meet one of its star alumni – you got it, the political powerhouse Frank McKenna (swoon) – and his pal Bill Clinton (double swoon) as the dynamic duo teamed to open the brand new Frank McKenna Centre for Leadership on campus on May 11. But wouldn’t you know it, my flight was delayed and I missed all the action. Sob. So with heavy spirits I finally arrived on the StFX campus.
First impression? It’s brilliant. Such great architecture. When I heard what StFX is all about, I started to perk up. They’ve got it going on, I tell you. Top rate education. Residential spirit to no end. Leadership. Social justice. Innovative programs. Wow. It’s the full deal.
And just when I thought things couldn’t get better, I saw him across the quad, emerging from Morrison Hall with his shiny gold X-Ring picking up the morning light. Yes, as I sat in the cobblestoned courtyard of Confusion Square, I saw him. I saw Mr. Right. Mr. FX.
It was love at first sight. And not just because the bear was sporting a golden X-Ring. Do you know it’s the third most recognizable ring in the world, by the way? Yep. Just ask Alex Trebek. It’s a Jeopardy question you know. Now, I loved the X-Ring, don’t get me wrong, but it was how comfortable I felt on campus, how easy it felt to say hi and get involved, that did the trick for me.
FX took me to the Schwartz School of Business so we could log onto one of the many computers in one of the large Mac labs and look at a wedding registry. Whoop! Those computers are fast. And impressive. Students just love this building.
After the official wedding, he took me up to the Frank McKenna Centre for Leadership. FX is no slouch. He knows it takes leadership to make a relationship work. This centre has the chance to make a difference in the world. I like that. Inspired, FX then wanted to show me the site of some of his glory days when he toiled for the X-Men on the grid-iron. Ooh, the fast turf and bright lights. And the “Smile, You’re At X” sign. Whatever took me so long to get here
We strolled paw in paw over to the Keating Centre where I could not contain myself. I jumped for joy outside this amazing facility. Dance. Hockey. Convocation. X-Ring. It’s home to so much drama and joy. I think I even got a whiff of the excitement in the air of having Bill Clinton and Frank McKenna walk through its doors so recently. Talk about leadership.
Preparing for our official wedding debut, we popped by the Coady International Institute to learn all about social justice and how StFX is making a difference in the world. I am so impressed. Moses Coady, the legend, the big, broad strapping man from Margaree that started the legendary Antigonish Movement that spread through the world, stands tall here. They’re doing things right. I can’t stress that enough.
Now, every man’s family is important, so FX took me over to the Hall of the Clans at the Angus L. Macdonald Library to see portraits of founding families of northeastern Nova Scotia. I wanted a kilt right off. I can see what the students like studying here. Cause you know it’s okay for students to be proud of their studious ways on this campus. You would not believe all the opportunities and awards that come to students here.
Now the best part. FX took me over to Alumni House for our official wedding photos. Did you know the friendly folks over there are one of the main reasons StFX enjoys the strongest alumni network in all of Canada. Oh yes, you heard that right. The strongest. In Canada.
Because I admired it so much FX loaned me his X-Ring for our wedding photo. But I had to give it back. An X-Ring has to be earned to be worn. It’s a symbol of pride and achievement. Trust me, I’ll be back here in September enrolling in Year One…. 1,480 days until X-Ring!!!