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Dickinson Celebrates 2021 Homecoming & Family Weekend

fans cheer on the Red Devils

Fans cheer on the Red Devils during the Homecoming & Family Weekend football game. Dickinson emerged victorious.

BIG WIN, COMMENCEMENT CELEBRATIONS HIGHLIGHT EVENT

by MaryAlice Bitts-Jackson; photos by Dan Loh and Joe O'Neill

Dickinsonians and their families had several reasons to celebrate as they gathered on campus for Homecoming & Family Weekend, the first in-person Homecoming & Family Weekend since 2019. The weekend included all of the favorite events of past years, plus special tributes to members of the classes of 2015 and 2020—and a big win in Red Devils sports.

“It was so nice to reconnect as Dickinsonians during all of the events we missed last year,” says Andrew Calnon, associate director of alumni relations, “and to honor the recent alumni who were unable to enjoy Commencement traditions on their graduation days.”

The greatest hits

Dickinsonians and their families turned out in record numbers for the much-anticipated Saturday barbecue and tailgate, Pints With Profs and special gatherings for Dickinson clubs and organizations. Thrillingly, the Red Devil football team toppled the Gettysburg College Bullets, 34-3, in the Homecoming game. This earned Dickinson the coveted Little Brown Bucket trophy against its longtime sports rival.

Halftime featured an Athletics Hall of Fame presentation and recognition ceremony at the 50-yard line, in honor of Hall of Fame inductees for both 2020 and 2021. Ian Mitchell '10, Nick Karwoski '10, Darcy McDonald '09, Julie Martin McAllister '96, Andy MacPhail '76, Kent Pecora ’11, Allison Jordan ’11 and the 2009-10 men's cross country, indoor and outdoor track and field teams gathered again on Saturday evening for this year’s Athletics Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony & Dinner. 

2020 and 2021 Athletics Hall of Fame inductees were recognized during half time of the Homecoming football game.

2020 and 2021 Athletics Hall of Fame inductees were recognized during halftime of the Homecoming football game.

Student-athletes and their fans kept that Red Devil spirit burning bright all weekend long, during home games and tailgates with the field hockey, men's golf and men's and women's soccer teams. Students on the cross country, women's lacrosse and volleyball teams vied with team alumni, and students in the swimming program took their families to coffee in Allison Hall. The weekend concluded on Sunday with the 17th-annual Run for Steph, in memory of Stephanie Kreiner ’03.

Students, alumni, and family members take part in the annual Run for Steph.

Students, alumni, and family members take part in the annual Run for Steph.

Belated and beautiful

But it was the Commencement celebrations that put this Homecoming & Family Weekend into the college-history books.

The class of 2020 had its name in lights during a Friday-evening toast.

The class of 2020 had its name in lights during a Friday-evening toast.

The class of 2015 waited five years to walk out the doors and down the steps of Old West together, since rain drowned out those plans on their graduation day. On Saturday, they got their big chance again—this time, under cooperating skies. A champagne toast and light reception followed in front of Old West.

The class of 2020 had more missed traditions to make up, and they celebrated their first reunion year in grand fashion. Interim President John E. Jones ’77, P’11, kicked off the communitywide fete with a Friday evening toast to the class, featuring a performance by class of ’20 Octals. The college hosted a Commencement ceremony on Saturday morning, followed by an 8 p.m. graduation-night party and a Sunday morning brunch.

“This is a Commencement unlike any other in Dickinson’s history,” said Jones, addressing the college’s young alumni. “We will cherish this unique opportunity to gather together as Dickinsonians and to reflect on their time at Dickinson and celebrate their accomplishments.”

View more photos from the weekend on Facebook.

Learn more about the Class of 2020 Commencement.

TAKE THE NEXT STEPS 

Published September 17, 2021

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