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Class gifts set records galore
|President Jamienne S. Studley and alumni board members Barbara Sabia ’80 and Jeanne Shipp Waldinger ’68 gather up the bank bags of flower bulbs symbolizing reunion class gifts.|
Sibyl Waterman Haley ’71 had a busy time of it at Reunion’s class gift presentations. As the alumni board’s reunion giving chair, she emceed the event, and she never got a rest: almost every time a class fund chair announced results, Haley announced another record shattered. With such unprecedented generosity, she told the alumni and their volunteer leaders, “You make Skidmore better for the students here and yet to come. Great job, everybody!”
Among the notable accomplishments by reunion classes this year was the near-tripling of last year’s dollar figure by the Classes of 1975 and 1965, participation rates of 69 percent by ’40 and ’55, and a quintupling of last year’s dollar amount by the Class of ’80. Upholding a proud 50th-reunion tradition, it was the Class of 1950 that led the pack, with an annual-fund gift of $203,181 and a participation rate of over 71 percent—and plenty of bragging rights as winner of the awards for highest participation, largest gift, and overall achievement, as well as the beloved old Spittoon Award for the highest rate of attendance at Reunion. Winner of the award for largest increase by a pre-25th-reunion class was 1980, with an annual-fund total of $172,272, a new record for any 20th-reunion class.
Even the so-called zero-year reunion class, the seniors of 2000, made a special effort. When they surpassed their ambitious participation goal of 75 percent, Skidmore President Jamienne S. Studley and Alumni Association President Beverly Harrison Miller ’67 kicked in to help them reach the dollar goal of $10,000 for a scholarship to benefit a member of the Class of 2001.
Several nonreunion classes also turned in strong results, including 1976, which took top honors for a pre-25th-reunion class by reaching 42 percent participation, and the Classes of ’61, ’62, ’64, and ’67, who were among the top 10 finishers in dollars raised. All in all, 24 classes surpassed their previous records for dollars and/or participation.
As the total gift from reunion classes was announced —more than $1.2 million—the 50th reunioners from the Class of ’50 delighted the crowd with a chorus of “Skidmore, I love thee.” Truer words were never sung. —SR