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Hundreds of Bucknellians enjoyed the Saturday night fireworks show.
Posted June 1, 2008
Updated June 2, 2008
New! Reunion Weekend 2008 slideshows
LEWISBURG, Pa. -- One of the largest crowds ever of alumni, family and friends celebrated Bucknell University's Reunion Weekend 2008.
Nearly 2,100 participants from around the world had pre-registered for the four-day weekend that ended Sunday, June 1, according to the University's Office of Development and Alumni Relations.
The celebrants, many of whom stayed in the same residence halls they occupied as undergraduate students, came from both near and far. At least 39 states were represented by the mix of Bucknellians.
Attendees returning to campus came from three continents and a total of eight countries, including Australia, Belgium, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, South Korea, and the United States.
The Class of 2003 had the biggest Reunion Weekend 2008 presence with 188 of the class attending the weekend festivities, according to Development and Alumni Relations.
On Saturday, Bucknell President Brian C. Mitchell addressed participants at a packed Reunion Rally in the Weis Center for the Performing Arts.
"As president of this University, I am incredibly proud of our alumni," he said. "Together we are keeping Bucknell on the move and placing our University in an even stronger position as a leader in American higher education."
Mitchell detailed the launch of the University's $400 million comprehensive campaign, calling it the "most ambitious in school history" and said that the University was poised to move to an "unprecedented level of greatness. I have no doubt that with this campaign we will secure our financial future."
The president also reported that with the Class of 2012 the University's admission yield increased for the third straight year. "This means that more of our accepted applicants are enrolling and that Bucknell is increasingly a school of first choice. … We're competing with the Ivy League for the same students and competing well."
Bucknellians returning to campus participated in a host of activities: tours of the Bucknell Environmental Center, a presentation on the campus master plan recently approved by the University's Board of Trustees, a tent party and fireworks on the Sojka Lawn, class celebrations and open house gatherings for fraternities, sororities, athletics and other groups.
It was at Reunion Rally in the Weis Center, a traditional weekend highlight, that class gifts totaling $9.92 million were presented to the University. The largest of the gifts came from the Class of 1963, which raised $2.66 million.
Additionally, the Pete Pedrick Cup, given to the class with the highest giving percentage, was awarded to the Class of 1958 with 86 percent. That percentage was the highest rate of any class ever, breaking the Class of 1953's record of 84 percent in 2003.
Celebrants toast Reunion Weekend 2008.
The Alumni Award winners were honored by the Bucknell University Alumni Association Board of Directors at Reunion Rally.
Recognized as 2008 Alumni Award recipients were Walt McConnell, a 1953 graduate, recipient of the Loyalty to Bucknell Award; Marilee Shepler Cole, a 1968 graduate, recipient of the Award for Service to Humanity; Takeo Shiina, a 1953 graduate, recipient of the Award for Outstanding Achievement in a Chosen Profession; and Shari Aser, a 1998 graduate, recipient of the Young Alumni Award. Visit Alumni Association Awards for more information.
Alumni in the "3s" and "8s" class years celebrated milestone reunions in 2008. The Class of 1948 marked its 60th reunion. The Class of 1958 celebrated its 50-year golden anniversary and the Class of 1983 marked its 25th silver anniversary.
Contact: Division of Communications