The private, liberal arts college that sits in the center of Marietta may be small in size, but its history and legacy are far larger, as Marietta College has been educating students for 179 years.
Chartered in 1835 by Revolutionary War veterans, the college has spent decades in liberal arts and pre-professional education. It's powered by its core of students from almost 50 states and more than 20 different countries, just more than 100-member faculty and more than 40 undergraduate academic programs.
From the legendary Doo Dah Day to the school's well-known petroleum engineering program, the college has its own place in the culture of Marietta and within higher education, priding itself on small class sizes.
Submitted by Marietta College
A hot air balloon floats over campus at Marietta College’s first Doo Dah Day in 1974. The event, created as a way for students to “blow off steam” before finals and to welcome in spring, has been a college tradition for 40 years.
Submitted by Marietta College
Junior Kaely Becker takes notes in a chemistry class during spring semester.
"I wanted the opportunity to work close with students and do research alongside them, and that's what really excited me about this place," said Mark Sibicky, a psychology professor who has been educating students at Marietta College for 24 years. "I always thought I wanted to be at a big university for my career, but I fell in love with this."
Sibicky and his wife left graduate school at the University of Arkansas and immediately started looking for places to work and live in either New York or Connecticut to be close to their families.
"I thought 'Oh, I will stay here a few years and move on,' and in 2000 I started looking around for another job, and realized I couldn't find anything better," Sibicky said.
Classification: Private, coeducational, nonsectarian, undergraduate, residential, contemporary liberal arts.
Campus: 90 Acres.
1835: Marietta College is granted a charter by the Ohio Legislature, Joel Harvey Linsey is first president.
1838: College celebrates its first commencement with four graduates.
1839: Marietta College Alumni Association forms.
1933: College faculty take 50 percent pay cut to keep college open through Great Depression.
1935: College celebrates its 100th birthday.
1952: Marietta Colleges joins the Ohio Foundation of Independent Colleges.
1959: Gilman Student Center opens.
1974: College holds its first Doo Dah Day.
1986: Alma McDonough donates $5.5 million to college to form McDonough Center for Leadership and Business.
2003: Rickey Science Center and Dyson Baudo Recreation Center dedicated.
2009: Legacy Library opens.
A total of 1,430 students attend Marietta College full-time as Pioneers, and the college has received national recognition by the Princeton Review for "Best Midwestern College" and "Best in the Nation" by Forbes.
"I came here because there's a small town community within the campus, and there's also one outside the campus," said Tonya Carlile, a senior from Belmont who is studying environmental science. "All the buildings are so historical, and with all the trees and flowers, it was hard to pass up when I came to visit here in spring."
With the bricks, the trees and flowers and the old, historical buildings that entice students, Marietta College appeals to students for its academic programs.
"All of the students come out of here successful, no matter what their major, and that academic focus is what brought me here," said C.J. Englert, a senior from Buffalo, N.Y. studying political science.
With an alumni association that dates back to the first graduating class of 1839, the school boasts 25,000 past Pioneers.
"From the first time I stepped foot on the Marietta College campus, I knew that I was supposed to be there. The campus was beautiful, the classes were small, and the faculty blew me away," said Claire Berlin, a 2009 graduate from Weston, W.Va. "I remember that Dr. Gamaliel Perruci, dean of McDonough Center and McCoy Professor of Leadership, knew my name when I came back for another visit."
The student to faculty ratio at Marietta College is 13 to 1.
Steven Adell, Class of 1976, was traveling through Ohio with his father on a business trip in 1972. Adell had already received a full swimming scholarship to the University of Kentucky when the pair stopped in Marietta for the night.
"We came up Putnam Street and the first thing I saw was the main entrance of some place called Marietta College with its tree lined walks, beautiful buildings and lovely campus," Adell said. "I remember turning to my dad and telling him this is where I wanted to go, not knowing anything about the school."
Adell met his wife there and after graduating with a degree in computer science and business, stayed nearby in Belpre to run the ElectroLoft Stereo store.
Marietta College was originally founded as the Muskingum Academy in 1797 before being chartered as the college in 1835. Today, the campus sits on 90 acres just blocks from downtown.