‘Becoming’ sculpture dedicated at UM

&uot;The younger hand

&045; that of the student &045;

reaches skyward. Its pose and size suggest the potential for continuous growth and development.

&uot;The more mature hand &045; that of

the University as a teacher &045; appears to have been guiding the student’s hand, but has now fallen back, representing a new role of support for the student.

&uot;The space separating the hands represents the student’s graduation, the event when the student takes what he has learned into the next phase of life.&uot;

That’s the way a University of Montevallo brochure describes the symbolism behind &uot;Becoming,&uot; the new sculpture

dedicated on the UM campus

before a crowd of about 200 spectators

on Saturday, Feb. 15.

The work of art is a 16-foot sculpture cast in 5,000 pounds of bronze and located on a pedestal opposite Bowers Colonnade on the corner of the King House Quad.

The keys looped over the index finger of the younger hand are interpreted as the acquisition of academic knowledge and the immeasurable attainments nurtured at the university (strength of character, maturity, confidence, inquisitiveness and other non-taught qualities).

The work was created by UM art professor Ted Metz and 40 of his students.

It was underwritten by the University of Montevallo Foundation, the University of Montevallo National Alumni Association and Jeanetta and Bill Keller and presented as gift to the students, faculty and alumni.

Metz has taught sculpture, ceramics and design to UM students since 1973.

Called the &uot;ideal college professor&uot; by UM President Dr. Robert M. McChesney, Metz was named the 1997 Alabama Professor of the Year by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

He is also a volunteer for Shelby County Habitat for Humanity, chairs the organization’s building committee and serves on its board of directors.

Metz acknowledged the assistance of the following

in the creation of &uot;Becoming,&uot; Jeremiah Alcorn, Joe Arnold, Keith Bidwell, Chris Collins, Megan Cronin, Andrea Dent, Steven Dixon, Will Frye, Marisa McCall Geiger, Wendy Geist, Stephen Haas, Brian Hankins, Adam Hathaway, Vonda Hicks, Josh Howe, Diala Lehman, Danny Martin, Julia Peerson, Kerri Russell, Daryl Simpson, Erica Smith, Katherine Stevenson, Jo Taylor, Karla Thomas, Brad Waiwaiole, Jenifer Wallace, Jeremy Wass, Misty Woodard, Stephen Wynn with special thanks to John Cooke, campus mason; David and John Funk, David Funk Engineering Inc.; Dale McCalley, Southern Precision Corporation; and Allan Thrasher, Allan Thrasher Construction