CLASS OF 1968
55TH REUNION SUMMARY
May 26-28, 2023
Thanks (at least in part) to the Outreach Committee, Linda Reñasco Cadigan and Arin Edwards, seventy-five members of the Class of 1968 and 15 guests spent the weekend in Mead Hall. The Hospitality Committee, Judy O’Connor Hayes and Linda Graham McElroy, saw to it that we had drinks and treats, from fruit to home-baked cookies, to satisfy our every craving. They also provided us with masks and COVID tests just in case, but we didn’t seem to think we needed them.
The living room was well supplied with items with which to interact, thanks to the work of the Program Committee Chairs, Christine Anderson Salmon and Gayle Gunderson Richardson. On the TV screen was a rotation of pictures of art works made by classmates. (This and a slide show of books written by class authors are also on our class website. Nonie Davis and Suzanne Spaeth Marinell are responsible for the art show.) Two copies of the spectacular online Reunion Book, compiled by Joy Camp, Linda Torlai Stauffer, and Pam Daviau Joseph, plus copies of our yearbook Llamarada were also available. We could post notes to a board with the sentence “In 1968 I didn’t think I would . . .” or add thoughts to a booklet describing each of our deceased Faculty Honoraries. (Dr. John Piper, our only living original faculty honorary, was unable to join us due to a preaching commitment.)
In addition to the Back-to-Class lectures and the State of the College address by Interim President Beverly Tatum open to all reuning alumnae, Friday’s events included two activities arranged just for our class. In the early afternoon, we had a walk with Dr. Catherine Corson, Associate Professor of Environmental Studies and former Director of the Miller Worley Environmental Studies Center, to see some of the student environmental campus projects. Later in the day, Dr. Amy Martin, Professor of English and Director of the Weissman Leadership Center, led the class in a discussion of Robin Wall Kimmerer’s Braiding Sweetgrass, the 2022-23 common read for the campus. Dr. Martin’s session was also broadcast via Zoom to several classmates unable to attend the reunion in person. (Both Dr. Corson and Dr. Martin were elected new Class Honoraries at our class meeting Saturday.) Meg Boyd Meyer and Cindy White Morell, our Connections Committee, arranged for us to have our picture taken outside the Dining Commons with members of the Class of 2018 under the American Yellowwood tree we gifted them in 2018.
On Saturday, we celebrated the Laurel Parade, ending with the laurel chain ceremony at Mary Lyon’s grave led by the Class of 2021, which had not had an in-person graduation because of COVID. Our costume was a blue fascinator, selected, according to the Costume Committee of Donna Machcinski Petersen and Carol Foy Graham, because it was practical and could be worn again! Our new parade signs said our favorite decades of life were our 60’s and our younger years, our 20’s to 30’s. We haven’t changed living locations recently, and we are deeply concerned about climate change. We are “with-it” when it comes to using cell phones and computers. Betsey Huebenthal Johnson, Carolyn Dorais, and Stephanie Whalen Cosgrove saw that the survey to collect and compile this information for the signs was sent out before reunion.
At the Alumnae Association meeting, Mary Anne Mears was awarded the Achievement Award for her lifetime work of creating spectacular sculpture. The class received The Lion Award for “the highest total giving to all funds and purposes during the five-year reunion cycle” for our $7,628,825 gift. We also have more Mary Lyon Society members—63—than any other class, but we weren’t given a prize for this.
Our class picture, class meeting and memorial service occurred after our lunch in the Dining Commons. We elected new class officers, including Carolyn Dorais and Sue Graham Simpson as the new Co-Presidents, who will serve from 2023 until 2028. Nancy Huttemeyer Davis and Sue Graham Simpson, Reunion Co-Chairs, were thanked for their dedication to making this reunion so memorable for us all. In a particularly touching ceremony, created by classmates Rev. Holly Vincent Bean and Rev. Dr. Mobby Brown Larson, we read in unison the names of our 51 deceased classmates. The class meeting and memorial service included nine classmates on Zoom.
Late in the day Saturday, our class was led on tours of the Fimbel Maker and Innovation Lab, new since our last reunion. We remained there for our pre-dinner social hour, which included remarks about the Lab from its director, Dr. Katherine Aidala, Professor of Physics and our third new class Honorary. We adjourned to a buffet dinner in Willitts. Class President Nancie Fimbel was thanked for her service. The three new Faculty Honoraries joined us for dinner and participated in a panel discussion during dessert. (Kudos to the Reception and Dinner committees: Karen Kunkel West, Debbie Wolf Page, and Liz Tannenbaum.)
There were no targeted activities for the class on Sunday. We packed up, said our good-byes, and again thanked Nancy Huttemeyer Davis and Sue Graham Simpson, our Reunion Co-Chairs, for the deeply enjoyable reunion they gifted us. We promised each other we would return in five years, hoping the weather would be as glorious as it had been for us this year.
Nancie Fimbel, President 2018-2023
Class of 1968
Our 55th Reunion Class Survey provides a snapshot of the Class of 1968, almost 55 years after graduation from Mount Holyoke College. 202 classmates submitted Survey responses back in the fall of 2022, representing over 50% of our class.
To access the Class Survey results, click this link 55th Reunion Class of 1968 Survey. Then enter the case sensitive password Reunion68.
55th Reunion Program Committee Co-Chairs Chris Anderson Salmon and Gayle Gunderson Richardson posted the question during Reunion Weekend, collected, and collated these responses from our classmates:
"Never did I think I would..."
Mount Holyoke College Class of 1968
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