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Alumni Weekend 2017


Mind-blowing plans are underway for next year's Alumni Weekend that we will share with you very soon. Until then, pour yourself another cuppa and relive moments of last year's educational extravaganza, where more than 1,200 graduates, friends and families came to the campus to be students again. 

UCalgary Alumni Weekend Spans Generations

If you want to experience University of Calgary’s storied history while exploring cutting-edge research, discovering cool tours and meeting old and new friends, Alumni Weekend is for you. Mark Sept. 22-24, 2017 on your calendar.

Let's start with a skip back to the 2016 Alumni Weekend where we found alumni such as Carol Christensen, 72, recalling her student days of 50 years ago. She was part of a group of placard waving students who marched defiantly on what is now the University of Calgary’s main campus to demand academic autonomy.

Christensen, (nee Thomas), who graduated in 1965 with a BA in political science and a minor in sociology, was proud to be a "calendar" girl, with a voice. The next year, UCalgary would indeed become an autonomous university, moving from beneath the administrative shadow of the Edmonton-based University of Alberta.

At last April’s inaugural Alumni Weekend, as Christensen got ready to rock to the sounds of the Heebie-jeebies with her daughter Jodi, she recalled her university days fondly. She showed a reporter her old student identification card. Then she pulled out a photo of herself and other students who once waved protest signs.

“I was involved in political activities on the campus, which was very small at the time . . . there were just a few buildings,” said Christensen, who, after graduation, worked in social work. She later returned to campus and volunteered in the archaeology department of the new Taylor Family Digital Library.

The Heebie Jeebies concert in the Mac Hall Ballroom was just one of many opportunities for alumni to reconnect with the past, while experiencing current highlights on campus.

Even 50 years ago, UCalgary was building bridges into the community.

An anniversary exhibit of past photos, letters and even frosh hats explained that “the University Ball became an annual event after 1964 and was intended to mix representatives of town and gown in order to enhance positive relationships between the university, city, school boards, high schools, local industry and professions.”

At last April’s Alumni Weekend, there were lectures by top researchers on everything from healthy brain aging and body image issues to Indigenous matters and climate change. More than 1,200 interested alumni and friends came for a quick shot of learning and a healthy dose of fun.

Returning alumni came face-to-face with old friends and new technology as they strolled through updated, modern buildings that weren’t there when they were schooled. There were drumming circles, telescope and 3D printing and electric racing bike demos, campus tours, youth camps, photo booths, running clincis, even scavenger hunts.

Lara Pearl Ahmed, 26, who has a Bachelor of Commerce degree with a specialization in marketing, 

graduated this year. She and her friend Anneliesse Bilic-Montiel, who graduated with a combined degree in business management and economics in 2012, were getting their caricatures done for free in Mac Hall and getting ready to go on the scavenger hunts.

“There are big age differences in the people here for the Alumni Weekend and we’re all having a lot of fun,” said Ahmed. “It’s great to come back to campus and bump into the people you went to school with and see how things and people change.”


More Shots from Alumni Weekend 2016