Bates Today Brings College Volunteers ‘Home’
Scanning the scene at this summer’s Bates Today weekend, Geri FitzGerald ’75 summed up the atmosphere. “It’s as though we grew up in the same house,” she said.
As president of the Alumni Council, FitzGerald helped welcome scores of alumni volunteers “home” to Bates July 28-30 to participate in the Bates Today Volunteer Recognition Program. The extended family of Bates alumni in attendance included graduates from the Class of 1934 right up to graduates from the Class of 1994.
The Bates Today Program, begun a few years ago, provides participants with an opportunity to tour the campus, meet with faculty, students, and staff, and socialize with other alumni, parents, and friends who share an interest in Bates. This summer’s gathering was the largest Bates Today program to date, and was presented as a special “thank you” to alumni who enjoy serving the College in a variety of volunteer roles, such as class officers, club leaders, alumni-in-admissions chairs, and Annual Alumni Fund class agents.
Highlights of the gathering included a tour of the newer College buildings, such as the Residential Village, Underhill Ice Arena, and the Davis Fitness Center, as well as Carnegie Science Hall, which underwent a renovation and expansion five years ago. Professors, coaches, and current students provided tours and shared the excitement of life at Bates today. President Harward and Bill Hiss ’66, vice president for administrative services, addressed the group as well.
While attendees enjoyed the scheduled activities, they also had fun interacting with people of all ages who share the common bond of Bates. “What I liked best was meeting alumni from older classes and hearing about their years at Bates,” FitzGerald said. “I sat with one woman from the Class of 1934 who regaled us with wonderful stories of her College days. She’s now in her eighties, and her memories of Bates are just as fresh as if she had graduated only a few years ago.”
Directory Helps Newest Alumni Stay in Touch
The Council has just completed work with the Alumni Office on Bates’s first Young Alumni Directory. This directory, created for the class of 1995, will be distributed to Bates’s newest graduating class along with copies of their Mirror.The directory consists of four general sections. The first section covers ways in which the College, through its various offices, can be helpful to alumni. The second section covers ways in which alumni of the College can be helpful to Bates, through a discussion of various volunteer networks of the College and the College’s fund-raising efforts. The third section is a list of key alumni club leaders with their addresses and phone numbers. Finally, there is a list of the members of the graduating class along with their addresses.
“This directory is one example of how we try to meet two goals of the Alumni Council,” explains Scott Steinberg ’86, director of alumni relations and secretaryex officio of the Council. “First, we are trying to keep Bates graduates in touch with one another. Second, we are trying to keep them in touch with their College. This directory should help them off to a positive start in both of these areas.”
The Council and the Alumni Office plan to use feedback from this first directory to plan and produce subsequent editions for future graduating classes.