New Stained Glass at RIC Tells Story of the ’60s

From MLK to RFK, 1968 was a turbulent year. Rhode Island College alumni commemorate it in a beautiful way.
Photography by Wolf Matthewson.

It was the year we lost Martin Luther King Jr., Robert Kennedy, and all confidence in the Vietnam War. The Beatles gave us the White Album, but 1968 marked the beginning of their end, too. These cultural mile markers are reflected in a stained-glass window at Rhode Island College, an alumni gift that underwent its own period of change. “We went back and forth for quite a while before fabrication,” says Jim Donahue Jr. of New England Stained Glass, who cut, painted and kiln-fired the window for RIC’s class of 1968. “It was definitely a fun project. But it was challenging — no question about it.” Their work was complicated by the pandemic, which limited in-person meetings and delayed installation. But, in 2021, the window debuted at Roberts Hall, where it reminds students of our past and, we hope, will see them through the seismic changes of today.