As a new school year begins, I hope this letter finds you involved in retirement plans, grandchildren, and enjoying good health. I wish for you minimal involvement in work, just the right amount of time with grandchildren, and freedom from your children’s student loan payments.
As Skidmore starts the 2013-2014, I am reminded of my first day in 1972. Having been a big fish in a puddle of a pond, I found myself surrounded by a brilliant, diverse group of bigger fish and well on my way to learning to swim better literally (thank you Mrs. Fairbanks) and figuratively. This academic year the College received the largest applicant pool in its history. There were 8,300 applications for the Class of 2017. Hailing from 48 states and 57 countries, more than 23% of those offered admittance are self-identified as students of color and 10% are international. Nearly 43% of this class has received Skidmore aid. Due to the generosity of parents, friends and alumni, the annual fund gifts made to Skidmore was $6.9 million last year. (The incredible Class of ’76 surpassed its goal, providing $63,000. More from our fundraising team to come in the near future). These funds directly support learning in labs, classrooms, studios and the like. Endowed gifts strengthen the College in perpetuity while generating funds for student aid, facilities, and other needs.
There are several accomplishment, awards, and recognition to be celebrated. In addition to academic achievements, student and faculty continue to bring Skidmore national recognition for their public service efforts and civic engagement activities. For the second consecutive year, Skidmore has been name to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll.
The Dance Department, which has a rich history at the College, was named one of the Top Five Dance Programs in the country by Backstage magazine. The athletic teams remain strong; twelve of Skidmore’s 19 varsity sports teams went on to post-season competition in 2012-2013. The women’s riding team won a national title and the golf team, the first Skidmore team to participate in an NCAA championship in 1987, made a national tournament for the 26th consecutive year.
Having had a positive college experience, I was pleased to see that Newsweek ranked Skidmore #9 in their 2012 college rankings of the “25 Happiest Schools.” The ranking also reflected that 88% of Skidmore students would choose the same school again and that the school has an incredible 95% full-time student retention rate. I don’t know what our percentages were with regards to these statistics, but based on the number of classmates who attend reunions, the annual financial support we provide, and the responses to the news of Matt Rosen’s upcoming bar mitzvah, I would say many friends were made.
There are more acknowledgements, awards, and achievements: 106 student-athletes earned recognition as members of the Thoroughbred Society with a 3.67 GPA or above in the fall semester; Samuel Schultz ’13 was awarded a $20,000 first prize for his plan to establish a placement service to match young Chinese people with US summer camps; and Tshedio Johannes Matake ’15 has been selected a winner of this year’s $10,000 Davis Projects for Peace.
So you can see, based on admissions reports, student and faculty successes, co-curricular activity, news, and financial support, Skidmore continues to be recognized for its academic and athletic excellence, social responsibility, and contributions to education and cultural development. Congratulations to Skidmore for its good news and accomplishments and cheers to our ability to bask in the light of our alma mater.
In the Spirit of ’76,
Merilee Mapes Perkins, Class President
Class President & Reunion Chair
Merilee Mapes Perkins
Mary Pat Roggenberg
Barbara A. Reinhalter
Class Fund Chairs
Terry Thomas Fulmer
Class FOP Chair
Christine Wright Hanley
Ingeborg Hegemann Clark
Nancy Reeves Reardon
Class Agent and Reunion Volunteers
Eileen Crowley Sullivan
Katherine Durham Brechner
Beverley Estabrook Mastrianni
Susan A. Flanagan
Jerald N. Katz
Elizabeth M. Lowe
Gwenn Milewski Neville
Carlie Quasnosky Centrella