David Fleming
It's All Academic   www.davidflemingsite.com   
I Give You President Undertaker

February 16, 2016

I received a catalog today from the Medallic Art Company, their Academic 2016 catalog for chains of office, ceremonial maces, medals, coins, medallions, and so forth.  For those of you not associated with a university or college, especially one that seeps its ceremonies in gold, copper, silver, or bronze jewelry or props, there is money to be made in specially designed ornaments for college presidents to wear, or hawk, throughout their professional lives.

If interested, you can see the catalog here.

The catalog seems to be telling us a lot about what it must be like as a college or university president. All I know is that if I go by what the Medallic Art Company tells me, it must be very difficult to be a college president.  So, in the spirit of David Letterman, I give you

Top 10 Revealing Things About Being A College President As Indicated by the Medallic Art Company 2016 Academic Catalog

10.  A president’s office might as well be a horse stable: “A traditional livery collar” is the “classic look that spans the ages.”

9.    The burden of leadership is not heavy enough:  “The most comfortable way to wear a chain of office is by balancing the length of the chain off the shoulders to offset the weight of the chain’s front.”

8.    The present is much more significant than the past, no matter what lip service might suggest differently:  “a smaller die-struck, or three-dimensional, version of your seal medal can be added to your chain, reinforcing your commitment to heritage.”

7.    In an academic environment, people must really struggle with the concept of a president:  “Be recognized as your institution’s highest authority at academic ceremonies and other prestigious events . . . “

6.    There is no such thing as bad publicity: “Masterful use of negative space creates a bold and memorable component.”

5.    Combative cultures must not be new in academia:  “. . . . shield components can be customized to best represent your institution’s mission.”

4.    Clearly there are phallic issues all over the place:  “The ceremonial mace is the symbolic extension of a leader’s authority.”

3.    Being a symbolic leader of an academic ceremony must be really exhausting: “If some of your institution’s ceremonies make it difficult to use your larger mace, a smaller duplicate will help you maintain the pomp and circumstance of important events.”

2.    Being a change agent is naturally part of the job and to be celebrated:  “. . . you can use an existing style as a starting point to create something a little different by changing the head, staff, or foot.”

1.    Cookie cutter presidencies must be a real problem:  “When it’s important to stand apart, Medallic Art Company can help you stand at the front with a mace that cannot be duplicated.”