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Mining Minds: Special Lighting Commemorates Convocation, First Day of School

Last Updated on September 26, 2017 at 12:00 AM

Originally published September 26, 2017

By UC Staff

UTEP Communications

The “Mining Minds” pickaxe sculpture at UTEP’s University Avenue roundabout will be illuminated in blue and orange Thursday evening, Sept. 28, 2017, in honor of two special occasions at The University of Texas at El Paso.

Mining Minds

The special lighting celebrates the University’s Fall Convocation, an opportunity to reflect on the accomplishments of the past year. UTEP President Diana Natalicio will give a State of the University address at 3 p.m. in Magoffin Auditorium. The event also will include a presentation on the newest student success initiative, the UTEP Edge.

The special lighting also commemorates the first day of school 103 years ago, on Sept. 28, 1914. That day, the first 27 students started classes at the State School of Mines and Metallurgy, now UTEP. The UTEP Student Alumni Association and the UTEP Heritage Commission will commemorate the first day of school with an open house at the Heritage House from 3-5 p.m. featuring their collections of Paydirt Pete costumes, freshman beanies, yearbooks, 1966 championship memorabilia and archives. The Heritage House is located north of the Union Complex at the intersection of Kerbey Avenue and Randolph Drive.

“Mining Minds” is an iconic piece of public art installed in 2010 to enhance the UTEP campus. At night, orange lights illuminate the steel structure while light from LEDs emanate from the perforated “ones” and “zeroes” at each end of the pick.

On special occasions, including historic dates, major annual milestones and to celebrate special accomplishments, the pick is illuminated in blue and orange.