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Norwich University honors oldest alum - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Norwich University honors oldest alum

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NORTHFIELD, Vt. -

Just 1,000 yards away from Mo Smith's house sits Norwich University. Not only is he close to the school, but it's close to his heart.

"It means a lot to me because I've been there so long," he said.

Smith is a 1934 graduate of Norwich. And at 101 years old-- just a month away from 102-- he's the oldest alumnus the school has.

"I could wind up and never stop talking about Norwich," Smith said. "I've seen about everything there is there."

After graduating, Smith returned to the university in 1955 as part of the staff. He had at least nine jobs at the school during his career, eventually retiring as a colonel.

"I was the first registrar in all of Norwich history," Smith said.

Since graduating, Smith has consistently donated money to the school. Tuesday, he was honored as a lifetime member of the Partridge Society for giving $20,000 over the years.

"I give what I can," he said. "I'm not a wealthy man."

"It's because of his faithful, consistent giving that he's been recognized today," said Richard Schneider, the president of Norwich University.

Only a select few are in the Partridge Society. With over 23,000 alumni, fewer than 500 are members.

Smith has seen his share of history at the school. When he was attending Norwich University, the military was still using horses. He was also working at the school in 1972 when the first women entered the Corps of Cadets. He remembers their first drill.

"I said you ladies settle down, you're doing a wonderful job here and don't let it get under your skin, just continuing doing. And I think I did quiet them down because they were on pins and needles," Smith said.

"Norwich guys are tough like Energizer battery guys, they keep going and going. So, we hope that for Mo he's doing awesome and we love him," Schneider said.

A lifetime of giving and still going strong.

"Norwich has been good to me," Smith said.

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