Just before Homecoming
this fall I got a memo from the college's director of alumni programs,
Susan Lowe, giving me my marching orders for visiting Friday evening
class parties. The gist of the memo was "keep moving." I welcomed one
class, then had salad with another, a glass of iced tea with another,
roast beef with another, then dessert with a fifth class, and on to
the all-alumni party.
Much of Homecoming
weekend is a blur, but one thing kept coming through in my conversations
with alumni from the class of '35 up to the class of '95: the faculty.
So many alumni recalled that wonderful faculty member who made a difference
in their lives by seeing great possibilities in them at a time when
they were seeking a direction for their lives.
At the Homecoming
football game on Saturday I listened to Professor Charles Hunter of
our biology department counsel, for the better part of the second half
of a rather exciting football game, a recent graduate who was thinking
through career issues. A few weeks after Homecoming I had the opportunity
to meet the parents of many of our current students during our Family
Weekend. The parents like our beautiful campus, and they are pleased
about the computers, and the residence halls are great, and so on. But
these parents came to campus to meet the faculty, and they were unanimous
in praising the faculty's commitment to our students.
Alumni who have
fond memories of Southwestern ask themselves, I'm sure: "Are the faculty
still great?" They are. "Is it still the great place to learn and grow
that I remember?" It is.
I wish you and
your families a holy and blessed Christmas. And I thank you, on behalf
of the whole college, for your wonderful gifts of allegiance and friendship.
excitement of this year's Homecoming is still fresh in my mind as I
write this message. It is difficult to describe the spectrum of feelings
that a "coming home" celebration can evoke. There is the anticipation
of seeing old friends again, the joy of recalling past experiences,
and the comfort of knowing that although much in life has changed, still
we are anchored... anchored to a life-changing catalyst, our "Southwestern
Some graduates feel the tug of their anchor chains sooner than others,
and with it the desire to return to Southwestern more quickly. Others
don't reach anchor's end for years. Regardless of when you feel the
urge to "come home," it is reassuring to know that the lofty heights
still remain, with welcoming pillars.
We are glad you came. Don't stay away so long next time.
Susan Lowe '95
Director of Alumni Programs