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Saint Mary’s students network with alumnae

| Thursday, January 26, 2017

Heritage Week at Saint Mary’s added a new asset to its week of events: an alumnae and student mixer. After the plans for the annual poetry reading event at Riedinger House fell through, the mission committee created the new event for students to meet with alumnae and talk with them one-on-one in the historical house.

Junior biology major Lydia Lorenc planned the new event with the goal to get alumnae involved in Heritage Week.

“It’s exciting to see how excited alumnae are to see us,” Lorenc said. “You learn another perspective.”

Shay Jolly, a 2005 graduate and assistant director of alumnae relations, said the event was a good opportunity to engage in Heritage Week.

“[Alumnae are] a good part of our heritage,” Jolly said, “If it wasn’t for them we couldn’t go forward.”

Some alumnae wanted to reach out to current students and see what the campus is like today. Maureen Parsons, a 2013 alumna, came to the event because she wanted to meet the current students.

“I always enjoy coming back to campus and engaging with students,” Parsons said.

Mary Ellen Koepfle, a 1978 marketing and finance graduate, wanted to interact with students during the mixer.

“I want to know how to keep Saint Mary’s vibrant,” Koepfle said.

Jude Anne Hastings, a 1996 alumna, took the opportunity to see what was happening on campus.

“We like to see students and support Saint Mary’s in any way we can,” Hastings said.

Students who attended were also curious to meet alumna and get advice from them. Freshman Emma Fruend thought the mixer showed Saint Mary’s was a good community.

“Everyone seems friendly and nice and wants to share,” Freund said.

Junior biology major Kaitlyn Cartone said she enjoyed getting to talk to alumnae individually at the house.

“I think just seeing where everyone is after graduation is cool,” Cartone said.

The event was also a way students could explore the closed Reidinger House. Freshman Abby Seubert was originally curious in the mixer because she wanted to see the house.

“It was always cool walking around and seeing what is behind the door [of Reidinger],” Seubert said.

Koepfle said she advises students to enjoy their time and to find a favorite spot on campus.

“Enjoy every single minute at Saint Mary’s, it goes by so fast,” Koepfle said. “Find your favorite place on campus.”

Hastings said to take advantage of the Saint Mary’s community.

“Soak up every opportunity Saint Mary’s gives you, it’s hard to get it out in the real world,” Hastings said.

The mixer at heritage week also made students and alumna proud of their school. Rachel Tomas Morgan, a 1991 graduate, said the school made her the strong woman she is today.

“I’m proud to be a Saint Mary’s grad,” Tomas Morgan said. “[The school] helped me to be a strong woman.”

Cartone said the event from the week gave perspective to what the college was like.

“[You] see where you came from,” Cartone said.

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