UNLV History

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Alma Mater

Alma mater is the Latin term for "nourishing mother." It is used in the English language as a sobriquet for the university or college a person has attended and as the song or hymn of a school, college, or university.

The lyrics for UNLV's alma mater were written by UNLV Music Professor Thomas Leslie and graduate student Robyn Lemon. The music was composed by UNLV alumnus Eric Whitacre, an internationally recognized leader in choral music.

Whitacre completed the alma mater in April 1998. It was formally presented and publicly performed for the first time by the UNLV Runnin' Rebels' Pep Band and UNLV Concert Choir during the halftime of the UNLV vs. Wyoming basketball game in January 1999.

Listen to the UNLV Alma Mater


Alma Mater, we praise you
For spirit, the eternal flame.
Strength which never falters,
A tribute to your name.

Alma Mater, we thank you,
Exalted Scarlet and Gray.
Truth and wisdom for your
Standard in our minds and hearts will stay.

Alma Mater, we cherish you.
And in days that are yet to be,
Our voices let us ever raise
In honor, U-N-L-V.