Students and parents gather for Celebration Weekend: The Office of Alumni Affairs & College Events sponsors events for the weekend

Posted by Julia Leef

As students and parents gather together for the upcoming weekend, they will have the opportunity to attend a variety of programs sponsored by the Office of Alumni Affairs & College Events that make up the annual Celebration Weekend, which takes place from Oct. 14 to 16.

Families will be able to see the college's facilities through events, open houses, interactions with the administration, performances at the Arthur Zankel Music Center and the SGA Club Fair.

"This is our opportunity to really showcase the great things at Skidmore that don't necessarily show every weekend," said Megan Mercier, associate director of Alumni Affairs & College Events, who will be in charge of Celebration Weekend for her fourth year. "It's a great way to engage parents in the life of the college."

Mercier said planning for Celebration Weekend begins in January with making reservations for space on campus to host events. In April, initial callouts are sent to faculty members for participation in MiniCollege, a program that allows families to attend lectures featuring a variety of professors and topics.

These lectures include "Your Brain Is Not a Computer and Your Mind Isn't Computation" with Flip Phillips, director of the neuroscience program and professor of psychology, and "The Beatles ‘I Feel Fine' " with Gordon Thompson, professor of music, and are available from Friday to Saturday.

"We have found over the years that people really enjoy our schedule," said Mercier, citing feedback surveys from families in attendance from previous years.

From April until August, the Office of Alumni Affairs & College Events finalizes the details for Celebration Weekend, working with various facilities to set up events. One such facility is the Williamson Sports Center, which will host "Under the Big Top," an event that allows student performers to showcase their talents, which will take place on Saturday. Advanced reservations are strongly recommended.

Mercier said the Office of Alumni Affairs & College Events tries to make as much use of the college's resources as possible in order to control costs. "We do our best to use our resources carefully to showcase what the college is about," she said.

The Office of Alumni Affairs & College Events advertises for Celebration Weekend all year long.  It informs parents and students about the many events of the weekend through announcements in Scope Monthly, an online news publication, "Save-the-Date" cards sent to parents of the incoming first-year class, handouts given to families at registration and other media outlets, such as Facebook and Twitter.

"It's a real pleasure to work on this weekend," Mercier said. "It is nice to see it all come together, and it's a wonderful time to show off the best of the college."

A full schedule for Celebration Weekend, with information on events, facilities and a campus map key can be found here. Tickets for events may be picked up at the Welcome Desk on the second floor of Case Center.

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