Temple lost an “institution” when Arnold Boyd, the longtime program coordinator for the Office of Student Activities, died of heart failure in his office Nov. 3, 2006.
Several students recalled fond memories of Boyd, who served in his post for more than 25 years, during a Temple Student Government general assembly meeting held two days after his death. Some students referred to the 57-year-old employee as “Daddy Boyd.”
Dr. John DiMino, director of Tuttleman Counseling Services, called Boyd a “Temple institution.” Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Theresa Powell told the general assembly that Boyd had two distinct passions in life.
“One of his passions was for his love of jazz,” Powell said. “And the second was his love and empowerment for students.” The Office of Student Activities plans to keep the second part of Boyd’s legacy alive by continuing “Memorable Moments in the Community,” a program he created and launched in 2001 that gives students an opportunity to experience different cultures within Philadelphia.
“We have picked our countries and we’re moving forward with that process,” Gina D’Annunzio, interim director of the Office
of Student Activities, said. “We’re trying to keep the spirit alive with that as well as for him.”
Memorable Moments events will take place on Feb. 22, March 22 and April 26. The specific countries for this year’s program have not been confirmed yet, D’Annunzio said. Student Activities began its search for Boyd’s replacement Jan. 23. D’Annunzio, who is in charge of the search, said the entire Student Activities staff will get an opportunity to talk to the candidates. She said the goal is to hire a new program coordinator by June.
During his tenure as program coordinator,
Boyd was responsible for advising and registering more than 150 student organizations. He also planned several events for the Office of Student Activities, including Homecoming, Spring Fling, African American Heritage Month and Student Leadership Retreat programs.
D’Annunzio said she and program coordinator
Maureen Fisher have assumed some of Boyd’s former responsibilities.
The Student Activities staff, however, makes a lot of decisions together, D’Annunzio said. Program Coordinator Christopher Carey, who advises the Main Campus Program Board, and Jason Vida, graduate extern for student organizations, are key members of the “programmer’s
“We’ve been able to thrive in that atmosphere,” D’Annunzio said. “Once we go in a room together and meet, it’s always been that we divvy up the tasks.”Boyd was a regular at TSG’s general assembly
meetings and Fisher has taken on that role in his absence. She has attended TSG meetings since she was hired in January 2006.
“From an administrative aspect, [the Office of Student Activities] has delegated responsibilities to Gina and Maureen depending on what the situation is,” TSG President Raysean Hogan said. “Arnold, of course, did a lot more and eventually someone’s going to have to step in and refill that position but for now, people step up when they can, when the situation is needed and that’s how its been working.”
Student Activities has focused on empowering all 168 registered student organizations this year, D’Annunzio said. She said an online registration system, expected to launch April 1, will streamline the re-registration process for both student organizations and Student Activities.
“The administration continues to reflect the goals and dreams shared by Arnold Boyd and that is no easy feat,” said sophomore Nick Bardoustos, vice president of Alpha Kappa Lambda fraternity, in an e-mail.
Bardoustos said Boyd was “an inspiration”
to him.”It is hard for anyone to live up to the passion and love Arnold Boyd gave to this university,” he said.
Boyd’s spirit remains in the Student Activities office through his music, D’Annunzio said. Boyd was involved in TraneStop, a nonprofit educational advocacy organization that promotes the awareness and appreciation of jazz music.
“If there is a particular song playing, because we usually play music at a low volume at the front reception or [Office Manager] Ms. [Christine Jackson] will have music in her office, and if we hear something we’ll be like, ‘Man, that’s Arnold’s tune’ and [Office Manager] Ms. [Sharon] Lee will say, ‘Man, I wish Arnold was here to dance with me,'” D’Annunzio said. “So I would say the music always brings us back. I think that’s the thread that will always be able to be there for us.”
Tyson McCloud can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.