Give Us a Ring
With your support, Aggies by the Sea can enjoy their own ring statue on Pelican Island.
- By Anna Cairns '20 '23
- Illustration by Justin Metz
- Oct. 26, 20213 min read
Less than 150 miles from College Station, the Spirit of Aggieland is alive on Pelican Island. Home to Texas A&M University at Galveston and 2,100 Aggies by the Sea, the island campus blends the unique soul of Aggieland with the rhythm of marine and maritime life. There is just one thing missing: an iconic Aggie ring statue students can call their own.
Since the 2009 unveiling of the Haynes Ring Plaza in College Station, its 3-ton ring replica has become an icon on the flagship campus. For many current students, Ring Day itself has become enmeshed with the image of an oversized Aggie ring statue and a family photo next to it. Despite receiving the same ring and participating in the same tradition, Aggies by the Sea currently do not have an equivalent statue of their own.
“Texas A&M-Galveston is a small campus with a few thousand students who are just as passionate and involved in Texas A&M traditions as students in College Station,” said Andres Barboza ’18, former Maroon Delegates president. “Our campus should reflect that.”
Maroon Delegates, a Galveston Campus student ambassador group and the organization spearheading the statue program, first had the idea for a ring statue in 2018 during a visit to College Station. Since then, support has snowballed and culminated into official fundraising efforts and artist’s renderings of a final statue.
The proposed design stands around 8 feet tall to reflect the cozier, more compact campus on Pelican Island and features two interlocking Aggie rings: one small and one large. Once complete, the statue will stand on display in a plaza between the Aggie Special Events Center and the Bracewell Clock Tower.
“Having a ring statue would motivate our current students,” said Deidra Dittmar ’19, former Maroon Delegates vice president. “On difficult days, it would serve as a reminder of what they’re working toward.”
The estimated cost is $115,000, which will cover the base, statue, delivery and installation. While many campus fundraising initiatives focus on large donations, the Galveston ring statue initiative is a true crowdfunding effort that can be achieved collectively through small contributions from the community, beginning at only $25. Each gift would carry a different meaning: An Aggie by the Sea may feel pride at seeing their identity represented physically on campus, while another Aggie may feel that they are “passing it back” by giving to Galveston students what they enjoyed in College Station.
“Seeing this statue come to fruition through many small donations would mean so much to the Galveston campus and its students,” Barboza concluded. “It feels fitting that a statue representing the Aggie Spirit could be funded by so many members of the Aggie community."
Make a Difference: Continue spreading the Aggie Spirit to Pelican Island and help Texas A&M- Galveston reach its goal of constructing a campus ring statue by giving online at give.am/GalvestonRingStatue.