As another school year comes to a close, many senior students at Shippensburg University are preparing to graduate, enter the work force and leave college life behind. Some will return to campus several times over the next few years to attend homecoming festivities, visit their favorite professors or just enjoy a nostalgic walk around the place where they spent some of the best days of their lives. Sadly though, others may never step foot in Shippensburg again.
While the aforementioned homecoming celebration is always a popular reason for alumni to come back to campus, there is another annual weekend of activities that provides an opportunity to relive the glory days with fellow classmates.
The appropriately titled, “Alumni Weekend,” is scheduled for the weekend after Memorial Day each year. The 2014 edition, carrying a theme of “Reminisce, Reconnect, Forever Raiders,” begins on Thursday, May 29, with the 26th Annual Alumni Golf Outing at the Carlisle Country Club. Teams will start teeing off at 1 p.m. before embarking on a long day of five irons, food and fundraising for the SU Alumni Association’s legacy scholarship.
The action moves down I-81 and onto campus on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. There is truly too much planned to list it all in this short column of information, but just a few of the activities that alumni will be offered next month include an awards dinner, a 10K race and a late-night “Pubs and Grubs” bus tour of Shippensburg’s finest restaurants.
On Saturday, food and drink enthusiasts will have no shortage of options when attempting to whet their appetite. Over the course of only a few hours, alumni can sign up for sessions such as “Café Flambé,” “German Wine Tasting,” “Pennsylvania Beer Tasting,” “Death by Chocolate” and an “Ice Cream Social.” The annual ArtSHIP Arts and Wine Festival will also be held in the afternoon, and the “SU Night Dinner” features all-you-can-eat crabs, shrimp and chicken.
Alumni Weekend is well attended every year, but there is a noticeable absence from the under-30 crowd. It is incredibly rewarding to see so many former students return to campus for the 50th anniversary of their graduating class, but there are plenty of reasons for younger alumni to make their way back as well.
For more information about this annual event, log on to www.ship.edu/alumni. The website also has a link to a downloadable copy of the Alumni Weekend brochure.
Several members of the SU Alumni Association’s board of directors will be on campus assisting with next month’s festivities, and they will keep volunteering for many years to come. It would be nice to eventually start seeing the faces of some current students show up to participate in the fun.
Life in the “real world” will be exciting but busy. Jobs will be secured, first houses will be purchased and families will start to form. But, alumni are encouraged not to forget that they are part of a “SHIP” family as well, and they are always invited to come back home.