The Observer is a Student-run, daily print & online newspaper serving Notre Dame & Saint Mary's. Learn more about us.



SMC celebrates parents weekend

Kelly Konya | Monday, April 15, 2013

Saint Mary’s College welcomed mothers from all corners of the globe Friday for the College’s annual Junior Mom’s Weekend.

Although the current junior class is the smallest on campus with only 260 students, roughly 400 people attended the weekend’s events.

Junior Katherine Sullivan, student body president, said more than half of the class registered, which showed just how special the weekend is for juniors.

“Kym Doing, who is studying abroad here from Australia, had her mom fly to the States for the events, and my friend Landess Kearns had her mom come all the way from Hawaii,” Sullivan said.

The weekend officially kicked off Friday afternoon with registration and a wine and cheese reception in Stapleton Lounge. Junior class president Carolyn Backes said the reception was a great way for the juniors to introduce their mothers to one another.

“The wine and cheese social was a perfect start to the weekend and it was nice to see everyone with their moms,” Backes said.

The juniors and their moms received complementary gift bags that included Saint Mary’s wine glasses, earrings from Flourish boutique and matching long-sleeve t-shirts.

“The t-shirts were a huge hit,” junior class vice president Susie Larson said. “We did a spin-off of the popular ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’ logo, the t-shirts say, ‘Keep Calm and Call Your Mom’ on the backs. Everyone has been wearing them around all weekend long.”

On Saturday, the women toured the Riedinger House, the residence of official friends of the college who visit campus, and the Heritage Room to learn more about the history of the college. Sullivan said this tour allowed the Belles to share the college’s heritage with the moms.

“My mom is a Saint Mary’s alumna, and she learned so much about the tradition of the college that she wasn’t aware of prior to the tours,” Sullivan said. “It was very cool to learn the history and relate that to where we are as a college today.”

Tea and cookies in Haggar Parlor followed the tours. Then, many of the juniors and their visitors attended a mass in Holy Spirit Chapel of Le Mans Hall.

Saturday evening’s dinner at the Hilton Garden Hotel was one of the favorite events of the weekend, Larson said. The dinner featured a silent auction, cocktail hour and a surprise performance by The Undertones.

“It all came together at the Hilton Garden dinner, especially when [Saint Mary’s] President [Carol Ann] Mooney gave her amazing speech that left most of us in tears,” Larson said.

Sullivan said the speech focused encouraging the juniors to embrace the opportunities offered by Saint Mary’s as they enter their final year of college.

“President Mooney said to the mothers that the women sitting in front of them, meaning their daughters, are not the same women they were at 14 years old or even the same women they were when they began their college experiences,” Sullivan said. “She said that something very special happens to a woman at Saint Mary’s, and as an alumna, she realizes how much her experience impacted her life and who she is today.”

The weekend turned out to be a huge success for the juniors and their moms, Larson said.

“We were all so excited about it because we are very close to our moms,” Larson said “It’s really important to have a relationship like that, I think. The weekend was a celebration of the bonds that we have at Saint Mary’s in our sisterhood, and then being able to share that with our moms.”