This year, the Ohio University Alumni Association is commemorating its 150th anniversary as part of a year-long celebration of the association's rich history. The celebration was officially launched at this past spring's commencement.
"Celebrating our 150th is important for a number of reasons. We are one of the oldest and most established alumni associations in the country, and are proud of our history," said Executive Director Graham Stewart. "We represent an incredibly talented, successful and diverse alumni base. Nearly 250,000 alumni have graduated from OHIO, and nearly 200,000 are still living in every state and more than 50 countries around the world. This year-long celebration gives us a timely forum to tell alumni and friends about the programs and services the association offers."
In addition to Alumni College this past June and the recent Homecoming weekend, the Alumni Association has many other 150th anniversary events planned throughout the year. These events include:
- The Central Ohio Chapter Centennial Celebration, Nov. 4
This event will take place at the Darby House in Galloway, Ohio, and feature guest speakers Debbie Phillips Bower '73, Julie Righter '78 and Executive Director Stewart.
- Alumni Leaders Conference, April 29-May 2
This conference is held annually on campus and equips chapter and society volunteer leaders to effectively inform, serve and engage alumni within their networks.
- Black Alumni Reunion, May 21-23
The Black Alumni Reunion is a weekend-long celebration held every three years at Ohio University to honor the rich tradition of African American heritage on campus and throughout the region.
The events will culminate with both Senior Sendoff and commencement in June. Senior Sendoff will take place during week nine of spring quarter, and is still in the planning stages by multiple student organizations. The day after Senior Sendoff will be commencement, during which members of the class of 1970 -- whose commencement was canceled in the aftermath of the Kent State shootings -- will be invited to walk with this year's graduates.
In addition to these events, the association is working to build a $150,000 endowment from alumni contributions to support the Alumni Association Legacy Scholarship. This scholarship is available to students whose parents, grandparents or legal guardians are alumni of Ohio University and who are either in the top 20 percent of their high school class (freshmen) or have at least a 3.0 accumulative grade point average (upperclassmen). Financial need may also be considered.
"Our 150th gives us the chance to reflect and celebrate the successes of our graduates and our association," Stewart said. "It also allows us to look forward to how we can adapt to meet the needs and expectations of our current and future alumni -- our students."