Union community gathers to celebrate at ReUnion 2016

More than 2,000 alumni and guests return to campus to reconnect
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Union community gathers to celebrate at ReUnion 2016

  • ReUnion Gen U barbecue

More than 2,000 alumni and guests came home to celebrate the Union community at ReUnion 2016.

Besides the traditional class dinners, Alumni Parade, convocation, picnic and fireworks, this year featured a panel on journalism with three generations of Wall Street Journal reporters. Barry Newman `67, Matthew Futterman `91 and Joanna Stern `06 have more than a half-century of experience reporting for the Journal. They shared their experiences at the nation's largest newspaper and discussed the rapidly changing landscape of journalism.

At the Alumni Convocation, President Stephen C. Ainlay remarked that the sense of community at Union, as evidenced by overflow crowds at events both on- and off-campus, has never been stronger.

Citing top rankings, record applications and strong alumni support, Ainlay said that perhaps the most important measure of the College’s strength can be seen in the students, particularly the Class of 2016.

“Talk to them about what they have accomplished,” he said. “When other colleges across this country were brought to their knees over issues related to diversity, this College stood together to affirm the values of diversity and to oppose persecution and harassment wherever it occurs and whatever form it takes.”

He also cited the commitment of student organizations to sustainability through organizations like U-Sustain, Octopus’s Garden, Green Grants and the recycling program.

“This is a community that has come together around issues that matter and has made a difference,” he said.

The president recalled a note from an alumnus who referred to the campus energy as “lightning in a bottle.”

“That is about you,” he said. “It’s about the Class of 2016. It’s a great institution, one you can be proud of, one that is worthy of your support, one that is worthy of your membership. It is lightning in a bottle.”

Peter Durkin ’16, senior student trustee, cited a number of student accomplishments including the establishment of Zipcar on campus, a march of solidarity against discrimination and a revised motto to include the word “soeurs” (sisters) to reflect the College’s co-educational mission.

Mark Webster ’88, co-chair of the Annual Fund, announced class gifts totaling more than $10 million, with the Class of 1976 giving a total of $6 million.

Andrew Kelly ’46, the oldest participant, celebrating his 70th ReUnion, got a standing ovation.

Susanna Ryan Berger ’99, president of the Alumni Council presented Alumni Gold Medals to James Taylor ’66, president and CEO of Taylor Made Group; Kelly Williams ’86, senior advisor to GCM Grosevnor; and John Sciortino ’81 (posthumously), founding partner of law firm Segar & Sciortino. Ann Fleming Brown, director of Admissions, received the Faculty Meritorious Service Award.

"ReUnion 2016 was a great success with alumni and friends back to celebrate Union and reconnect,” said Marna Redding, director of Alumni and Parent Engagement. "The weekend celebrated all that makes Union special and offered time for
classmates to remember and reflect. Thanks to those of you that came
home, we look forward to welcoming you back next year.”

The 50th ReUnion Class of 1966 received the Anable Cup for the greatest participation and the McClellan Cup for greatest class percentage. The Class of 1956 received the Van Voast/Class of 1941 Cup for best costume. The Class of 1991 received the Class of 1943 ReUnion Award for greatest ReUnion effort.

To view a photo gallery, click here.

ReUnion 2017 will be held May 19-21.