The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Graduate P Shaylee Ackerman (10) pitches during Texas A&Ms game against Valpo on Feb. 10, 2024 at Davis Diamond.
Holding down the house
February 22, 2024
Graduate P Shaylee Ackerman (10) pitches during Texas A&Ms game against Valpo on Feb. 10, 2024 at Davis Diamond.
Holding down the house
February 22, 2024

2014 marks 125th anniversary of Aggie Ring

Since its creation more than a century ago, the Aggie Ring has evolved from a piece of jewelry to one of the most recognizable symbols of the Aggie spirit.
This year marks the 125th anniversary of the Aggie Ring, which will be celebrated by honoring the ring throughout the year with unique Aggie Ring stories told via social media and Texas Aggie Magazine, said Kathryn Greenwade, vice president of The Association of Former Students.
As the milestone is observed, The Association of Former Students looks to the history captured by the two Aggie Ring collections found in the Clayton W. Williams Jr. Alumni Center, The Josh Sterns and Memorial Ring Collections. The Josh Sterns Collection, named after its originator, features a ring from each class from 1891 to 1964 while the Memorial Ring Collection features rings of deceased Aggies from each class from 1965 to the present.
Greenwade said by adding rings to the memorial collection, families gain an additional place to remember their loved ones and the collection gains a representative from that class.
“The Memorial Ring Collection is one that is very special to us and we are honored when family members choose to have their loved one’s ring showcased here,” Greenwade said. “We want people to see not just that ring but to know the story of the Aggie who wore that ring.”
Every Aggie Ring made since 1947 has been handcrafted by Balfour, making the 125th anniversary of the ring momentous to the company as well.
“We’ve been making the ring for a long time and understand the significance of the ring to Aggies,” said Willard Clark, Class of 1967 and Balfour representative. “We are pleased that we have been a part of the Aggie Ring program for such a significant period of time.”
Clark took over the Aggie Ring account for Balfour from his father, Willard Clark, Class of 1942, creating a history with the ring that makes the account more than business for Clark.
“We are incredibly proud to produce the Aggie Ring, the largest ring account in America,” Clark said. “Between my father and I, we have serviced this account for over 50 years. It is a labor of love.”
Manuel Ibarra, senior construction science major, is one of many students eagerly awaiting Balfour’s next distribution of Aggie Rings, and said the achievement means even more to him as a first-generation college student.
“The most important thing is making my parents happy and letting them know that their sacrifice wasn’t a waste,” Ibarra said. “People will recognize me now not just because I’m wearing an A&M shirt that anyone can buy, but because I’m wearing a ring that not everyone can earn.”
Many other universities offer class rings, but Greenwade said 125 years of history has created a luster in the Aggie Ring seen in no other.
“The gold is no different than the gold that might be in any other ring, but it is what we all feel for Texas A&M,” Greenwade said. “That feeling that we’re a part of something bigger than ourselves and that when we wear that ring, we have a responsibility to represent not just ourselves, but to represent Texas A&M and the core values of Texas A&M.”

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