Cal U celebrated Home Sweet Homecoming and Family Weekend Oct. 1-3.
It was surely a Home Sweet Homecoming and Family Weekend celebration Oct. 1-3 as the Cal U community gathered to celebrate in person after a virtual event in 2020.
“It was wonderful to hear such warm and inspiring stories from our alumni,” said Dr. Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson, who joyfully participated in her first Homecoming as interim President.
“This weekend truly showed the love and passion our alumni and students feel for Cal U’s past and present, and their hopes for the future.”
First-year student Anna Curry joined the group to sing “Tennessee Waltz.” The Mifflin County native is attending Cal U because “few in-state schools offer a commercial music technology program.”
-- Three alumni — Bryan Schuerman ’09, ’16, Ashley Roth ’10, ’12, Ryan Jerico ’09 and Dr. Tim Susick ’76, ’78 — were among the speakers as Pinardi Pavilion, located at SAI Farm, was dedicated in honor of Dr. Nancy Pinari ’94, ’96, ’98, retired vice president for Student Affairs.
“You touched so many lives, mine included,” Jerico said. “You let us teach ourselves where to go and let us find our own paths, and that’s why there are so many successful Cal U alumni in the world today.”
-- Sigma Kappa sorority sisters Paula Mihalko Cardarelli, Frannie Coneybeer Russell, Adele White and Dawn Wilson returned to campus with other members of the Class of 1970 for a better-late-than-never 50th reunion, postponed last year due to COVID-19.
A luncheon was held for them and the Class of 1971 on Friday at the Convocation Center.
The women have maintained their friendship over the years and grew closer to support sorority sister Mary “Sis” Everhart before she passed away several years ago.
They purchased a brick in her memory and another in memory of Joe Lutz, “our Powderpuff Football Coach,” for the Greek Life Commons at Kara Alumni House, which was formally dedicated on Saturday.
“It’s always so good to get together to relive our fond memories and to share what’s new in our lives,” Wilson said.
“And we’ll have a toast to him at his (Roadman Park) pavilion this weekend,” Russell added.
-- Some members of the Class of 2020 returned for their first in-person Homecoming as alumni. Nicholas Morrison earned his undergraduate degree in communication disorders and is pursuing his master’s degree in special education, with a focus on applied behavior analysis.
“It’s nice to get back to some sense of normalcy,” he said.
Emily Behm graduated in 2019 with a degree in childhood education and is pursuing her master’s degree in school counseling at Cal U.
“The pandemic made us realize how important it is to see people in real life,” she said.
-- A contingent of retired educators from the Canon McMillan School District — Lucy Mirisciotti Young ’69, ’71, Diane Mulholland Drazick ’71 and Judy Satina Skerbetz ’69, ’72 — were delighted to catch up prior to Saturday’s Homecoming parade.
“We came back for our 50th reunion and had such a good time that we came back as someone’s guest!” Young said.
Added Drazick, “I was amazed by the campus, how it changed since I was here.”
-- The Home Sweet Homecoming parade was filled with marching bands, floats, fire trucks and fun on Saturday, led by Dr. Tim Susick as grand marshal. “Wizard of Oz,” a float built by Delta Zeta, Sigma Kappa, Acacia and Alpha Kappa Lambda, won first place; “Sweet Home California,” by Phi Sigma Sigma, Theta Xi and TEAC, won second; and “Home is Where the Heart Is,” by Alpha Sigma Alpha, Alpha Sigma Tau, Sigma Tau Gamma and Fiji, won third and the Spirit Award.
-- The Cal U Cheerleaders had even more to celebrate at the Homecoming football game Saturday afternoon. One of their own, Christina Hebda, was crowned Homecoming Queen, and Zachary Snedeker was chosen as Homecoming King during a halftime ceremony. Hebda is a junior early childhood education major, and Snedeker is a junior studying professional golf management.