A pair of new banners frame the grand entrance to the Frances C. Arrillaga Alumni Center, ready to greet the more than 10,500 alumni and guests expected to participate in Reunion Homecoming , a four-day event that opens Thursday.
During Reunion Homecoming, alumni and their guests will roam the Farm, touring gardens, museums and campus buildings and catching up with classmates and friends at class tents. (Image credit: L.A. Cicero)
"Welcome Alums," one banner says. "Never Stop Growing," says the other, the slogan printed over the image of a towering redwood.
Reunion Homecoming, which will feature more than 165 events and more than 300 mini-reunions, is known for several signature events, including Classes Without Quizzes, Dinner on the Quad, and a ceremony and reception honoring four alumni inducted into the Multicultural Alumni Hall of Fame.
Alumni and their guests will roam the Farm, touring gardens, museums, the Stanford Red Barn, the David Rumsey Map Center and the Old Chemistry Building, where they will learn about the "new" architecture of the historic building, which now houses the Sapp Center for Science Teaching and Learning.
Class events are the core of Reunion Homecoming, which will host more than 7,500 alumni for their 5-year milestone reunions. This year’s program celebrates the 13 classes whose years end in "3" and "8" - 1953 through 2013.
Alumni celebrating their 65th reunion - the Class of 1953 - will be inducted into the Cardinal Society , joining the ranks of Stanford’s most treasured alumni.
The oldest alum attending this year’s festivities is George Jedenoff , Class of 1940, who will celebrate his 78th reunion at age 101. The youngest cohort are 1,400 recent graduates, who have been invited to return to campus in advance of their 5-year reunion.
"It’s pretty glorious to see the span of generations all together," said Leslie Winick, director of alumni and student class outreach at the Stanford Alumni Association (SAA), which hosts the annual event.
The most popular events are class parties, which will range in size from 300 to more than 1,100 attendees and will take place all over the Farm.
Alumni also flock back to campus for mini-reunions planned by classmates to celebrate friendships formed while living in residence halls, competing on sports teams and studying overseas , including one alumni gathering that will take place in a French patisserie.
President Marc Tessier-Lavigne will welcome alumni on Friday morning, and his address will be followed by a showcase of short talks - "micro-lectures" - by Stanford faculty in materials science and engineering, medicine, law and history. The SAA will post the lectures on its YouTube channel following Reunion Homecoming.
Stanford Law School , which is hosting Alumni Weekend 2018, is expected to attract 1,100 law alumni and guests to its four-day program.
Reunion Homecoming also includes games and activities for kids, including a "Kids Amazing Race" and a program put on by Stanford Law School, "Goldilocks Goes On Trial: A Mock Trial for Kids and Teens."
Nearly four dozen members of the Stanford faculty will present Classes Without Quizzes, one-hour presentations that will cover a wide variety of topics, including:
- The Trouble with Monuments
- Inside Rodin’s Hands: Teaching Surgery Through Art & Anatomy
- Galápagos: Why It’s Endlessly Fascinating and Why, Even Now, You Must Go
- How Poison Frogs are Solving the Opioid Crisis and Autism
- Women and the Future of Democracy in Iran
- Developing Civic Identity as Part of a Stanford Education
In addition to the Stanford vs. Washington State University football game - and tailgates galore - on Saturday, Reunion Homecoming also coincides with the Pac-12 Cross Country Championships , which will be held Friday at Stanford Golf Course, and Men’s Water Polo vs. the University of California, Davis, which will be held Saturday at Avery Aquatic Center.
Alumni will gather Sunday in Memorial Church for University Public Worship - an Interfaith Service of Remembrance and Alumni Memorial Service. This year, Michael D. Tubbs , ’12, the first African-American mayor of Stockton, California, will be the guest preacher.