Hollywood giant Robert Redford stopped into town recently for the 2014 Celebrity Forum, and spent much of his time checking out MCC's city digs, and asking tons of questions about the college's history and its penchant for preserving and rehabbing old properties to serve as college academic buildings.
Turns out the movie legend is quite a fan of history, it seems!
Before his speaking gig at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium, Redford stopped in at the college's historic John Nesmith House on Andover Street, where he peppered MCC President Carole Cowan with questions about the city's centuries worth of mill history.
Redford, best known for starring in Hollywood blockbusters like Butch Cassidy and the Sunday Kid, the Sting, the Way We Were, All the President's Men, the Candidate, Out of Africa, and dozens more, was engaging and genuinely interested in hearing more about the historic buildings that still dot the city of Lowell's downtown. His ears especially perked up when he heard about the college's efforts to preserve the Boston and Maine railroad depot and to convert it into a new academic building for the performing arts on Central Street. With his filming background, and especially his efforts to help smaller, independent movies make it to the big screen via his Sundance Film festival, he was pleased as punch to hear there would be a new theater for MCC's students in the building. Several of the students were in attendance at the Celebrity Forum, including their leader, theater chair Karen Oster.
On hand for the night were 20 of MCC's finest, who were the recipients of this year's Celebrity Forum scholarships, a mainstay of the fund-raising efforts that the Forum is produced to support.
The students also got their chance to shine on stage, receiving raucous rounds of applause from the sold-out audience at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium.
Once the scholarships were awarded, the college showed a video montage of Redford's movie clips, and the film icon made his grand entrance through the rear of the auditorium, stopping to shake hands with Forum sponsors all the way in.
On stage, Redford was interviewed by one of MCC"s many movie buffs, Patrick Cook, the Executive Director of Public Affairs
The Jeremiah Johnson star spoke of his many movie roles, his leadership of the Sundance Film Festival, and then spent several minutes talking about several of the charitable causes the environmental activist supports. Before show's end, he answered a "lightning round" of quick questions that audience members submitted via MCC's Facebook, Twitter, and social media sites.
Big laughs from Greg Flores, the Executive Vice-President and Chief Human Resources Officer of the TJX Companies, Inc., the Celebrity Forum's presenting sponsor
At show's end, President Cowan returned to stage to present the Horse Whisperer with the first-of-its-kind collector's item official Middlesex Community College Stetson!
America's favorite cowboy wasted no time donning the hat
Which he promptly tipped to the standing ovation of the crowd!
Another successful year of Celebrity Forum, boasting one of the biggest celebrities that Hollywood has played host to over the past half-century. Thanks to all who supported the night, and in so doing, helped support the students who shine at MCC!
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a selfie is "a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website."
2014 has been dubbed the Year of the Selfie.
President Obama takes them with, among other people, David Ortiz.
Ellen Degeneres takes them with all her celebrity friends.
Heck, even the Pope takes them.
Now it's YOUR turn! Beginning today, MCC launches its Graduation Selfie contest. At MCC, we're proud of our grads, and want everyone to know about it, so we're asking everyone to share their proudest MCC momemts and a selfie with us on Instagram and Twitter.
Here's how it works: take a selfie that captures your proudest MCC moment, your upcoming graduation, or a selfie on campus with a friend, a family member, or a faculty member.
Share your selfies with @middlesex_cc on Instagram or twitter and hashtag it with #MCCGradSelfie
See your selfies on MCC's Instagram and Twitter feeds and you'll receive a graduation shoutout from MCC. We will also be creating a photo gallery on the MCC Facebook page to celebrate our proud graduates.
All participants who submit a selfie with the appropriate tags will be entered into a drawing to win an iPad mini. (One entry per person.) The winner will be drawn and announced on college social media outlets the day after graduation, May 23.
For official rules, visit our website at https://www.middlesex.mass.edu/mccgradselfie/
What are you waiting for? Get out there, get creative, and get snapping those pics!