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Re-engage, Reminisce, and Renew: Grand Alumni Homecoming Weekend

2016 Grand Alumni Homecoming Weekend highlights
Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Alumni from all class years are invited to connect with old friends and create new memories at St. John’s University’s Second Annual Grand Alumni Homecoming Weekend (GAHW), on Friday, June 2, and Saturday, June 3, 2017.

The celebration, which takes place at the Queens campus, features an even broader variety of social, academic, and recreational activities than last year’s inaugural GAHW. In addition, the University is extending overnight accommodations for participants who prefer the convenience of on-campus residence halls. Check-in starts on Thursday afternoon, June 1.

Last year’s celebration drew 1,487 graduates and their guests. Based on attendee feedback, the University has added new offerings for 2017—including GAHW’s first off-campus event. “This is an incredible opportunity to re-engage, reminisce, and renew friendships with fellow alumni and friends,” said Mark A. Andrews, Director of Alumni Relations. “It is also a chance for the entire family to share the St. John’s experience—and make this a weekend to remember!”

A Full Slate of Activities

Scheduled events begin at 10 a.m. on Friday morning, June 2, with a bus trip to the National September 11 Memorial and Museum Tour in lower Manhattan. Back on campus, alumni can trace their alma mater’s 147-year history through the SJU Heritage Exhibit Tour. For the second year, Individual College and School Alumni Award Ceremonies and Receptions offer former classmates the opportunity to connect with faculty and each other while honoring fellow graduates. The evening concludes with a new “After Party” Alumni Gathering for all schools and colleges.

Launching Saturday’s activities, the annual St. John’s 5K Run/Walk and Kids Fun Run takes place from 8 to 10 a.m. Alumni also can participate in Campus Walking Tours. Later that morning, President Conrado “Bobby” Gempesaw, Ph.D., hosts a Brunch and Q&A in the D’Angelo Center Ballroom. Four Academic Lectures examine contemporary issues such as preparing for retirement and the educational impact of video games; a Q&A with SJU Red Storm Athletics and Coaches provides the latest news about St. John’s teams. From 1 to 5 p.m., the Alumni Great Lawn Party offers outdoor activities for all ages, including carnival rides, food stands, game booths, a “Kiddie Zone,” and more.

Honoring Classmates and Friends

For many guests, the Grand Alumni Signature Celebration is the weekend’s high point. Following Mass at 5:30 p.m. in St. Thomas More Church, the University Alumni Award Ceremony recognizes these exemplary graduates:

Pietas Medal
given to alumni who demonstrate a lifetime of devotion and loyalty to St. John’s and recognizes their longevity, leadership, and consistency of service to the University.
Harry R. Beeth ’67CBA, ’70MBA
Sr. Beryl F. Herdt, O.P., Ph.D. ’67GEd

President’s Medal
awarded to an individual who has achieved exceptional personal and professional success and/or rendered outstanding service to the University or society.
Salvatore J. Zizza ’67UC

Outstanding Alumni Achievement Medal
recognizes alumni who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and leadership, deep commitment to serving others, and substantial dedication to St. John’s and its mission.
Lee D. Eisenberg, M.D., FACS ’67C
Rogelio Oscar Fernandez ’92P

Heritage Circle
presented to alumni who have graduated from the University 40 or more years ago, and have maintained a close association with the University through their participation, interest, and extraordinary support of their alma mater.
Steven J. Farella ’77SVC

University Lifetime Achievement Award
presented to alumni who, over the course of their lifetime, have exemplified a true Vincentian spirit of service to others and have had a major impact on the life and mission of the University through their generosity, dedication, and loyalty.
William J. Montgoris ’67CBA, ’88HON  

At 7:30 p.m., alumni gather in the D’Angelo Center for a Celebration Reception and Dinner. The evening honors the 50th Anniversary Class of 1967.