Stanford alumni return Thursday for tours, tailgates, classes without quizzes

Alumni are traveling from across the globe for this year’s Reunion Homecoming, which includes class events, mini-reunions, micro lectures, classes without quizzes, tours—including a visit to the new Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford—open houses, tailgates for Saturday’s Stanford vs. Oregon football game and more.

Stanford expects to host about 10,000 alumni and guests during Reunion Homecoming, including George Jedenoff, a 100-year-old member of the Class of 1940.

Reunion balloons

Stanford expects to host about 10,000 alumni and guests during Reunion Homecoming, Oct. 12-15. (Image credit: L.A. Cicero)

Jedenoff, who earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, followed by a master’s of business administration in 1942, was featured in Stanford 125, the celebration of the university’s 125th anniversary. Jedenoff, who was awarded the Stanford Medal in 2009 for decades of distinguished and significant volunteer service to Stanford, posed for a portrait in the Main Quad for Stanford 125 wearing a Cardinal red sports jacket and Stanford tie.

The Oct. 12-15 Reunion Homecoming features more than 167 events, including tours, mini reunions, open houses, “micro lectures,” class panels, “classes without quizzes” and Dinner on the Quad. Alumni will participate in more than 310 mini-reunions during the four-day event, which also includes games and activities – and child care – for kids.

Tents are now popping up around campus. Banners with “2s and 7s” – for the twelve classes, 1957 through 2012, reuniting this year – now adorn the Frances C. Arrillaga Alumni Center. Each year, Stanford also warmly welcomes members of the Cardinal Society, which honors alumni who graduated more than 65 years ago.

“We have thousands of alumni traveling from across the globe to get here to see their classmates,” said Leslie Winick, director of alumni and student class outreach for the Stanford Alumni Association. “The young classes – 5th and 10th reunions – will have crazy huge crowds. We expect 1,000 enthusiastic alumni who graduated one to four years ago. The classes from the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s, ’80s and ’90s are rallying in a big way.”

Winick said each class has a core group of leaders who have made their reunion unique through the themes they chose for class panels. The Class of 1957 chose “Rebooting: Finding Meaning and Pleasure in our 80s.” The Class of 1987 will discuss “The Unpaved Road – 30 years of Detours and Divots.” The Class of 2002 is considering “Through the Looking Glass – Reinventing and Rediscovering the Self.”

President Marc-Tessier Lavigne will welcome alumni on Friday morning, and his remarks will be followed by a showcase of short talks – micro lectures – by Stanford faculty in health research and policy, economics and history. The welcome program will end with a performance by the student a cappella group, Talisman.

During “Classes Without Quizzes,” Stanford faculty members will explore some of today’s most pressing issues. Alumni will have dozens of classes to choose from, including:

  • What Design Teaches us about Life
  • Why Preschool is Important for All Children
  • U.S. Health Care Reform: Setting the Record Straight
  • What Hip-Hop Tells Us about the United States and the World Now
  • Body Hacking: Using the Physiology of Exercise to Slow Aging
  • Taking Antarctica’s Pulse: Using Radar to Study Ice Sheets

Among the many tours during Reunion Homecoming, participants are invited to visit the new Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford before the 521,000-square-foot expansion officially opens to patients and families in December.

In this year’s Reunion Homecoming football game – at 8 p.m. on Saturday in Stanford Stadium – the Stanford Cardinal will face the University of Oregon Ducks.

The four-day event concludes on Sunday, which features two special programs: the University Public Worship and Interface Service of Remembrance, a contemplative service of hymns, readings and tributes to those members of the Stanford alumni family who we remember and honor; and a reflective Compline service featuring choral ensembles in the tranquil candlelit ambiance of Stanford Memorial Church.