In-person fete features words from author and podcaster Randall H. Miller ’93 M ’07

The coronavirus pandemic derailed many Norwich University activities in 2020-21, including traditional dinners to celebrate the awarding of class rings. But on Oct. 1, Class of 2022 Corps of Cadets members, showing trademark Norwich perseverance, convened at Plumley Armory for a dinner to celebrate.

By Norwich rite, a 10-student committee designs its class’s rings during the sophomore year’s spring semester. An online election in sophomore year’s fall semester chooses the committee. Interim Commandant William Passalacqua has said that in recent years 70% of a given Norwich class, on average, has participated in these ring committee elections.

In a Facebook video for the 2022 Corps ring reveal, a voiceover said the jewelry is cherished and symbolic.

corps ring celebration 2021 4 min
Randall H. Miller ’93, right, author of seven books including the Norwich history “Norwich Matters,” and host of “Second Mess,” a Norwich-oriented podcast, was a guest speaker at the Oct. 1 ring celebration dinner for Class of 2022 Corps of Cadets students. (Photo by Mark Collier/ Norwich University.)

“The ring is a chance to feel the weight of all those who have come before us,” the video’s narrator said. “The ring embodies every ounce of effort we as cadets have put into our careers at Norwich, whether it be as scholars, athletes, ROTC cadets or all.”

The rings also unify the class, the voiceover said, and make true the university’s “Norwich Forever, Norwich Together” catchphrase.

Although the design of one ring side, the 1819 side so named for the university’s founding year, stays static, the other side is left to each class to design. As the Facebook video related, the 2022 Corps ring includes images of a phoenix, symbolizing the class’s four-year revitalization; stars in the shape of the Medal of Honor ribbon to honor Norwich alumni who served in the armed forces; and Paine Mountain, an important Corps training site.

Randall H. Miller, author of seven books including the Norwich University history “Norwich Matters,” and host of “Second Mess,” a Norwich University-oriented podcast, was a guest speaker. Miller, who lives in North Andover, Massachusetts, earned his bachelor’s in criminal justice in 1993 and his master’s in master’s in diplomacy (focused on international terrorism) in 2007 from Norwich University. Miller also served in the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne and 2nd Infantry divisions and was an adjunct professor in Norwich's College of Graduate and Continuing Studies from 2009 to 2015.

(Slideshow photos by Mark Collier/Norwich University.)

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