From mini-college courses and Fall Nationals to home games for the Statesmen and Herons, Homecoming and Family Weekend 2015 will give students, families and alums the chance to celebrate their pride for the Colleges as they participate in an exciting lineup of both new and traditional events. The weekend will feature HWS Trustee Bill Whitaker ’73, L.H.D. ’97 as the President’s Forum Speaker on Saturday morning, as well as the annual theme and fraternity house decorating contest with winners announced during the cabaret show on Friday, Oct. 2. Celebrations will run through Sunday, Oct. 4.
“After one of the most successful and highly-attended Homecoming weekends last year, we’ve spent the past year planning another memorable and entertaining lineup for all members of the HWS community,” says Director of Parent Relations Kelly Young P’16. “There will be events for everyone as we celebrate what makes the Colleges such a vibrant and special place.”
As one of the most recent additions to the lineup of Homecoming events, Whitaker will return to his alma mater on Saturday as part of the President’s Forum Speaker Series. An Emmy award-winning veteran of CBS news, Whitaker was named a correspondent for the network’s acclaimed newsmagazine television program, “60 Minutes” in 2014. Since joining CBS in 1984, he has covered many of the major breaking news events and issues of the day. Whitaker has been an active member of his local community and the HWS community, having consistently returned to campus as a Board member, and to attend various events and speaking engagements. Whitaker holds a master’s degree from Boston University in African-American studies and also attended the master of journalism program at the University of California at Berkeley.
Time-tested favorites and HWS traditions are also scheduled for the weekend. On Friday, families will have numerous opportunities to get more acquainted with HWS while alums can reminisce about their favorite memories. Parents are invited to attend open houses for the Center for Community Engagement and Service Learning, Center for Global Education, Finger Lakes Institute, Caird Center for Sports and Recreation, Centennial Center for Leadership, Office of Title IX Programs and Compliance, Abbe Center for Jewish Life, and the Goldstein Family Carriage House and Katherine D. Elliott Studio Arts Center.
At Houghton House, students, families and alums can stop by the Davis Gallery for a reception celebrating Mark Jones ’72, P’14 exhibit, “A Retrospective Exhibition, Paintings, Drawings and Photographs 1969 to the Present.” Also on Friday evening is the annual the “Quad-A-Palooza” event on the Hobart Quadrangle. The all-campus extravaganza will include a barbeque, family activities for all ages, and the “CABeret” student talent show.
The Abbe Center for Jewish Life will host a Kosher Shabbat dinner on Friday, while the Office of Intercultural Affairs will hold a “Snack and Share” event to give students the chance to share their experiences in clubs, community service, study abroad and other extracurricular affairs with family members and alums.
“We look forward to welcoming our alumni and alumnae back to their beautiful campus to see firsthand the Hobart and William Smith community in all its glory; to meet our impressive students and faculty; and to revisit the old familiar spaces and be wowed by some impressive new ones,” says Assistant Vice President for Alumni Relations Jared Weeden ’91. “We guarantee our alums will leave Geneva with renewed feelings of optimism and pride.”
A full lineup of events is set for Saturday, kicking off with the always popular mini-college sessions. Families, alumni and alumnae can get back in the classroom with 10 course offerings that cover topics ranging from the 2016 election to entrepreneurial and global leadership and even an HWS campus photo walk with Chief Photographer Kevin Colton. After time spent in the classroom, attendees can hear from President Mark D. Gearan, who will offer a State of the Colleges presentation on Saturday morning.
In keeping with tradition, students, families, and alums can gather on the Winn-Seeley Hill for the annual Fall Nationals homemade cart race before heading to the Tailgate Luncheon that precedes the Hobart football matchup against Worcester Polytechnic Institute. The William Smith junior varsity and varsity soccer teams will face off against Skidmore and RPI on the home turf.
A student research symposium and a dance mini-performance, “Composing Works: Music and Dance Collaboration,” will be held on Saturday. Integrating with the Geneva community, the Colleges will host a Worldwide Photo Day Walk through the community, as well as the Plein Air Festival juried competition and gallery reception at Houghton House, which will support the Smith Center for the Arts. For its inclusive, innovative and ongoing efforts to influence positive, communitywide change, Geneva was recently named a 2015 All-America City, a highly-selective honor awarded annually by the National Civic League to only 10 cities across the country.
Some events require registration in advance. Registration, and the full schedule for Homecoming and Family Weekend 2015 is available online. The Scandling Campus Center will serve as the weekend headquarters from 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. on Friday, and 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday.