SUNY New Paltz welcomed alumni for a weekend of virtual events during its annual Alumni Reunion Celebration held Oct. 16-18.
“We knew that Reunion would look a lot different this year because of the pandemic,” said Director of Alumni Relations Shana Circe ’02 (Art Education) ’08g (Visual Arts Education). “But we started planning early and we were so excited to see so many of our dedicated alumni participate in our virtual events. We can’t thank them enough for engaging with the SUNY New Paltz community this way while we’re still socially distanced.”
The weekend’s virtual events kicked off with a Welcome Address on Friday afternoon hosted by Circe and an Alumni Address from President Donald P. Christian with updates and information on how the campus is faring this fall.
The virtual Alumni and Heritage Award Ceremony honored 2020 award winners from across the world who tuned in and offered congratulations via the Facebook comments section.
Remaining weekend virtual events included the 50th Anniversary Lantern Society Induction for the Class of 1970 , a Virtual Alumni Panel hosted by Career Resource Center, a Planetarium Event, the Theatre Alumni Panel, a LGBTQ+ Fireside Chat, a special presentation by Renee Baccus ’91 (Black Studies; Psychology) titled Gardening as an Act of Resilience and a virtual hike with Glenn Geher and Circe at Mohonk Mountain House.
“Under these difficult conditions I think the college did an excellent job of allowing alumni from the Class of 1970 to interact and reminisce about our experiences on campus more than 50 years ago,” said Steve Borman ’70 (Secondary Education 7-12; English ). “Memories came flooding back about concerts, hero deliveries in the dorms, outstanding professors and a whole host of shared recollections. It is heartening to know that I am not alone in my fondness for our years at New Paltz. Hopefully, when the dust clears and COVID-19 is a memory, Shelley Borman ’69 (Elementary Education) and I will visit the campus in person once again.”
“Despite our physical distance, we saw our alumni participants smile during our award ceremonies, laugh during our class socials, have meaningful conversations during our panelist events and connect on our new online networking platform, The Orange and Blue Network,” said the College’s Alumni Engagement Coordinator Elizabeth Diuguid ’07 (English). “We saw their generosity during our class giving challenge and we tested their memories with the Res-Hall Round-Up! We feel so privileged to have had the opportunity to bring our alumni these opportunities for connection and kinship.”