Furman University Oral Histories

Streaming Media


A video interview with Betty Alverson, the founder of the Collegiate Educational Service Corps (CESC), what is today known as the Heller Service Corps, at Furman University. She also was the first director of the Student Center at Furman. In her 2004 interview, she shares memories of being a Furman student in the 1950's, and the faculty and staff that meant so much to her, like Laura Ebaugh, Winston Babb, Maguerite Chiles, Junius Gladney, and Dr. Olivia Futch. Betty speaks about returning to Furman in 1965 and becoming director of the new Watkins Student Center. She speaks in detail about CESC, and also talks about the beginning of May Day Play Day and other programs like Film Arts, Talk a Topic, Values Dinners, and Dialogue. She shares memories of the turbulent times in the 60's and 70's, and some controversial matters of that time, like dancing on campus, etc. Betty speaks about working with Furman Presidents Gordon Blackwell and John Johns, as well as Chaplain L. D. Johnson, and Dean of Students, Ernest Harrill. She also spends a portion of the interview talking about Furman's split with the South Carolina Baptist Convention.

Scholarship Type

Faculty Scholarship

Publication Date


City and State

Greenville (S.C.)


Furman University; History; Oral histories; College administrators; Alumni and alumnae




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Betty Alverson Oral History

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