Alumni worldwide celebrate Dal’s first-ever Global Homecoming
By Dawn Morrison
This year, alumni don’t have to stroll Dalhousie’s campuses to celebrate Homecoming. For the first time, Global Homecoming events will take place in their communities across Canada and around the world. Each of Dal’s 16 alumni chapters are hosting events — from Beijing to the nation’s capital.
Each group will put their own ‘spin’ on Homecoming — from pub nights and coffee socials to traditional Thanksgiving dinners, and even celebrating Alexander Keith’s birthday.
Strengthening Dal ties in Calgary
“Homecoming is the time each year when we stop and reflect on our time at Dal and everything it has contributed to our lives,” says Joseph Macdonald (MBA’91). He and Holly Marisco (BSc’05) are co-chairs of the Calgary Chapter. Calgary’s Global Homecoming celebrations will take on a fun, Maritime flair as they celebrate Alexander Keith’s birthday. The ‘happy hour’ event will feature food, fun, draws and door prizes and takes place at the Bank & Baron Pub.
Joseph says he is looking forward to getting together with friends he hasn’t seen in awhile, and welcoming new alumni to Calgary. He says events like these are both fun and beneficial for established and recent alumni.
“New alumni have immediate access to a valuable professional network for work contacts, housing recommendations and detailed information on the city. Existing alumni can stay in touch with a network of social and professional contacts who have a common bond in their graduation from Dal,” he says.
“This connection among Calgary alumni strengthens the bond we have between us, and our overall ties to the university.”
A Dal celebration in NYC
“Global Homecoming is a fantastic way for us to make the world smaller,” says Sanjay Gopal (DEngR’91, BSc’91, BEng’94), co-chair of the New York Chapter.
“The event will give alumni from all regions the chance to communicate and network. It will also provide an opportunity for alumni traveling on business, pleasure or those moving to a new city to reach out to other Dal alumni and connect with a friendly face.”
The New York Chapter has invited all Dal grads from the Tri-State area (New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and northeastern Pennsylvania) to meet after work at an Irish pub near Penn Station, “an easy place for people to get to and leave from!” Sanjay says.
A Canadian Thanksgiving in Beijing
In Beijing, alumni gathered on Sunday, Oct. 9 for a traditional Canadian Thanksgiving feast.
The event was a treat for homesick North Americans, and also fit perfectly with Chinese culture.
“China is very family-oriented,” says Cindy Jensen (BComm’84), chair of the Beijing Chapter. “The heart of Chinese culture is family, gathering together and food, so we all really enjoyed this event.”
Cindy says Beijing’s Global Homecoming celebration built perfectly on the momentum of Dalhousie President Dr. Richard Florizone’s visit to China a few weeks ago. “Dr. Florizone’s visit was incredibly well-received by our alumni, who want that connection back to the University. It’s important for our alumni to receive updates and find out what’s going on back at Dal.”
“Global Homecoming connects us.”
Cindy says Global Homecoming is a time to reflect on the history of Dalhousie, which means a lot to alumni and to her, personally. “I love the fact that I attended an established school with a long history and legacy behind it — being on an old campus, having tea with the deans in Sherriff Hall… Global Homecoming connects us back to our time at Dal.”
She says events like these only strengthen ties among alumni who are ‘away’ and build momentum and excitement for Dalhousie’s upcoming 200 year anniversary next year.
“It’s an exciting time to be a graduate, no matter when you graduated. Next year will be a time to pause and consider what it means to be part of the worldwide network of Dal alumni, and what Dalhousie has accomplished over 200 years.”
Find out more
To get involved with your local Dal chapter, visit the Dal Alumni website:
A message to members of the Dal community heading to China
“There’s a lot happening between Dalhousie and China and many may find themselves travelling here for business,” says Cindy Jensen. “Any professor, group or alum is encouraged to get in touch if you’re travelling to Beijing — we would love to create an event around your visit. We in China are ‘far away,’ and alumni really appreciate the opportunity to reconnect with the university, especially if they’re not able to get back to Nova Scotia often.”