Let’s look at the numbers!

     No, I haven’t been sitting quietly here in my Milton, Massachusetts home all of these years counting ’44's, donation dollars, or sheep, or what have you . . Most of the statistics that are shown below were provided to us by the good people at Cornell Alumni Affairs and you can accept their totals as being "the Gospel."

     Some of the "numbers" are quite interesting . . For example, where this past August Cornell’s current 2005 Freshman Class had 3,043 eager-to-learn enrollees, way back in September, 1940 we ’44's only numbered 1,673 when we signed in at Barton Hall as a Freshman class.

     Plainly and simply that means that today’s circa 2002 freshman class was 182% larger than our ‘44 Class was on its Day 1 on campus in 1940 . . Sort of staggering, isn’t it? . . And it accounts, in good part, for the major growth in the University’s facilities that have been needed to match this enlarged student population.

The war may have been a factor

     Another stat that caught my eye was the "graduate total." With 1,673 of us entering Cornell in 1940 - and only 1,163 of those entering earning an undergraduate degree - we experienced what has to be considered a startling drop-out rate of 32% . . .

     Do you remember those old World War II movie scenes in which the chief petty officer or the sergeant at boot camp or the NCO at OCS says, "Look at the man to your left and look at the man to your right. One of them won’t be here with you when you graduate."

     Well, my classmates, that’s exactly what happened to us in 1940-1944 . . one-third of us fell by the wayside and never did graduate . . . That’s why when Art used the slogan atop our letterhead for many years, "The upended and somewhat decimated class of World War II times that’s living it up in the ’90's," he wasn’t making a funny -
he was right on target!

     However, the loyalty to our Class of ‘44 has been most exceptional from those who experienced a personal wartime interruption in their Cornell education. Most returned from the war and chose to re-affiliate with 1944!

     Remember, too, that the tableau that appears below is a "snapshot in time" - the totals shown are those that existed on June 30, 2002 and they’ll continue to change in time. Keep this in mind if you’re viewing this Website page at a later date.

Alison King Barry, VP, Northeast Region
Accepted as Classmates in September, 1940:
1,673
 
Cornell Undergraduate Degrees:
1,163
 
Listed as Living with a Known Address:
483
 
Listed as Deceased:
490
 
Listed as Missing - No Known Address:
263
 
Killed in our Nation’s Service:
31
 
Active Duespaying Members of the Class of 1944:
350
 
Annual Giving Donors (July 1, 2999-June 39, 2001):
250
 
Honorary Members of the Class of 1944:
19
 
Listed in "55th Year Reunion Directory" in 1999
908
 
Attended 5th and 10th Year Reunions in 1949 and 1954:
80 and 215
 
Attended 15th and 20th Year Reunions in 1959 and 1964:
127 and 172
 
Attended 25th and 40th Year Reunions in 1969 and 1984:
228 and 129
 
Attended 50th and 55th Year Reunions in 1994 and 1999:
277 and 144
 
Number of Class of 1944 Tradition Fellowships
7
 
CLUB 44 Shipmates on 14 Previous Cruise-Tours during ’91-’02:
638
 
Attended 60th Reunion in 2004:
128
 
 
Contact the ‘44 Webmaster at cu44@optonline.net
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