2 minute read

Onyx Ring Story

Abigail Scanlon ’14

While I don’t have one of those “phenomenal” ring stories, I do have two small stories that demonstrate the quiet ways that the Onyx ring becomes such a meaningful part of a Scottie’s life.

First, as I was growing up, my mother was in the middle of going back to school and getting her bachelor’s degree after having originally gone to nursing school after high school. She was doing this work at Mount Holyoke College, and so I was introduced to the world of women’s colleges. My mother was pleased to receive her college ring — a gold band with an onyx stone and Mount Holyoke College engraved around it.

Following in her footsteps to a women’s college, I came to Agnes Scott. When my sophomore year arrived and it was my turn to receive the ring, my mom flew down from Massachusetts to be at the ceremony and celebrate with me.

She had long since stopped wearing her ring due to a chip in the onyx. After seeing me proudly holding out my left hand with my new onyx ring, she was moved. She returned home, hunted to find the paperwork for her ring, and sent it to the jeweler to be fixed.

Now we both wear our onyx rings every day. When I look down at mine, I am reminded not only of my wonderful time at Agnes Scott, but of my mother, the strong woman who raised me, and the women’s colleges that bind us.

A second memorable story comes from working at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Mass. Because I’m so far away from Decatur, I never expect anyone to recognize my ring. One day, while talking to two guests — a mother and daughter visiting the museum for the first time — the mother commented on my black onyx ring, saying she loved how unique and beautiful it was. I thanked her and told her it was my college ring. She asked where I went, and I said, “Agnes Scott.” She suddenly froze, her hands shot up to cover her mouth and she gasped. She told me her mother and all her aunts had gone to Agnes Scott! (She also shared how disappointed her family had been that she chose a different college.) Together, we admired my ring and talked about how much this symbol connects us. With tears in both our eyes, we embraced in a hug contemplating the bonds of Agnes Scott that brought us together.

Do you have special Onyx ring story? Let us know at alumnae@agnesscott.edu!