Alumni Weekend takes on a new format

Alumni Weekend takes on a new format

G eorgia College is preparing for a virtual Alumni Weekend to be held Nov. 6 and 7. Events will be listed in upcoming months.

“We intend to hold the formal 50th Class Reunion for the Class of 1970 and ‘A Night Under the Stars Gala’ in spring, if it is safe to do so at that time,” said Tre’ Johnson, assistant director of alumni awards, collaborations and reunions. “We are working now to ensure we have several virtual events in November, which incorporate some of the most popular activities during Alumni Weekend.”

Although virtual interactions won’t have the same appeal for all alumni and friends, it is only a temporary solution, due to the COVID-19 pandemic social distancing guidelines. 

Plan now for virtual Alumni Weekend.
Plan now for virtual Alumni Weekend.

“We understand that since around March, a lot of people’s daily lives and interactions have been virtual, and many people look forward to a resumption of more normal interactions,” Johnson said. “We pride ourselves on offering alumni and friends the events they want and will work with our alumni, friends and campus partners to create a unique set of events that will encourage them to spend a virtual weekend with us.” 

“We have some great activities lined up, but alumni should have a stake in the decision making. As we begin to roll out events, getting your fellow alumni, friends and loved ones to register will also assist us in creating a unique experience for all involved.”
– Tre' Johnson

The Alumni Awards Ceremony promises to be festive and filled with more visuals this year. 

“The plan is still in the works, but we have every intention of hosting the Alumni Awards Ceremony virtually,” said Johnson. “I am confident it will still be an event we can all enjoy and remember.”

Approximately 20 to 30 staff members are expected to help facilitate Alumni Weekend. It will be the typical mix of alumni affinity groups, alumni chapters and a few departments on campus.

Johnson believes future Alumni Weekends will return to normal in-person events beginning in 2021.

“I think this year’s Virtual Alumni Weekend will allow us to explore all-inclusive (not specific to classes or alumni groups/chapters, etc.) and life-long learning activities to utilize in the future,” he said.

“However, virtual reunions will become a big part of our future,” he said. “While we fully expect to have in-person alumni events and reunions in the future, virtual reunions will help us engage alumni who can’t make it out to public venues, because they have physical or travel limitations, kids, work obligations, etc.”

Feedback on Georgia College’s virtual reunions has been positive.

“Alumni have enjoyed being able to connect with their friends and fellow classmates in a time of isolation,” said Johnson. “The more we continue to involve alumni in the process of deciding which events are most appealing to them, the more successful their virtual reunions will be.”

University Advancement invites alumni to participate now in virtual Alumni Weekend by offering their ideas.

“We have some great activities lined up, but alumni should have a stake in the decision making,” said Johnson. “As we begin to roll out events, getting your fellow alumni, friends and loved ones to register will also assist us in creating a unique experience for all involved.”

According to Johnson, participating in Alumni Weekend is important because it allows us to unite the Georgia College family once again.

“It does not matter if you are Peabody, a Jessie, a Royal Irish or Thunderphant, a Colonial or a Bobcat,” he said. “You are all still a part of the Georgia College family. It will be different than in year’s past, but our standard of excellence and preeminence still applies. We look forward to providing the experience of a lifetime to our alumni and friends Nov. 6 and 7.”

To learn more, refer to future issues of eConnection, find the Alumni Association on Facebook and Alumni Association Instagram or contact Tre’ Johnson at trejuan.johnson@gcsu.edu.