Record Reunion: With 1,200 alumni, family and friends on campus over the weekend, Reunion 2016 set a new attendance record as 14 classes, from 1952 to 2011, celebrated the anniversary of their graduation. Here are some highlights from the three day event, which featured over 30 programs:
Pillar Inductions: On Friday night, 46 members of the Class of 1966 were inducted into the Pillar Society, which is for alumni who have celebrated and are celebrating their 50th reunion. President John Denning, C.S.C. individually presented the inductees with their Pillar pins on Friday night. Started in 2002, the Pillar Society has been in existence for only 14 years, but, as Fr. John noted “it has become part of the fabric of alumni life at the College.”
Coffee with the President: On Saturday morning, more than 50 alumni met with Fr. Denning for an informal Q & A session covering topics such as the tuition costs, career preparation, study abroad, diversity and inclusion, recruitment trends, and future plans. Three Student Alumni Association (SAA) members Oscar Tsao ’17, Dimitri Vlassov ’19 and Kristin Buckley ’17 also participated in the conversation and impressed those present with their mature answers and insights on college life.
Student Volunteers: In addition to Oscar, Dimitri and Kristin, there were about 40 other SAA volunteers helping the Alumni Office to host the event, welcome alumni and bring them up to speed on campus changes and developments. We extend big thanks to all our SAA volunteers who pitched in to make Reunion a success.
Love Actually: Nineteen couples, many with their children present, renewed their wedding vows in the Chapel of Mary with Alumni Chaplain Rev. Tony Szakaly, C.S.C. presiding. Fr. Tony asked each couple how long they have been married and the total comes to 359 years.
Class Gift: Reaching across the generations, the Class of 1966 connected with the Class of 2016 in a special way by directing their class gift to the Matt Brown Perseverance Scholarship. This is the first time in College history that two classes have collaborated on a single class gift. Together, they have raised $63,000 for the scholarship, which the Class of 2016 created in tribute to classmate Matt Brown whose response to a life-changing injury touched the hearts of his peers. In a recent Channel 5 interview, Brown speaks positively of his Stonehill experience. To see it, visit here.
Big Gift: On behalf of 628 alumni who made Reunion gifts, Ed Preneta ’71 presented President John Denning, C.S.C. with a check for $348,570, which represents a significant endorsement of the College and its educational mission by those who know us best.
Selfless Outreach: On the night before Reunion began, third grade teacher Nicole Bollerman ’10 received the President's Award for Excellence at the annual President’s Dinner before over 500 guests in the Sports Complex. Last year, Bollerman donated a prize of $150,000 prize to UP Academy Dorchester where she teaches and which serves low-income, high-risk elementary school students. In presenting the award, one of our highest honors, Fr. Denning noted Bollerman’s selfless outreach and her devotion to the care and education of her students. For more, visit here.