Sacred Heart alums might remember trudging through snow on their way to school, the test that made their palms sweat, or the lunch they had at Congé. But far more likely, former students will never forget how their favorite teacher encouraged them, the fun they had with friends and classmates (and the pranks they may have played), and how they felt supported by the entire SHS community in becoming their best selves.
The theme for the 2018 Alumni Reunion, held October 19-21, was Embracing the Sacred Heart Community: Past and Present. Milestone anniversaries were celebrated by classes ending in 8 and 3. The weekend began with a reception on Friday night. Ann Chiumino, Assistant Development Director, Alumni Relations, who served as the lead planner of the weekend's events, said her favorite moments at the reception were seeing classmates of 30 or even 50 years ago, lock eyes, recognize one another, give a shout and share a big, warm hug.
Saturday's events were a new addition this year—alums were invited to "Come Back to Class!" Sr. Nancy Kehoe, RSCJ ASH'55 started off the morning with a reflection on "God as Our GPS." She talked about how easy it is to feel lost in our chaotic world, but in thinking about how we put great trust in Siri to guide us on our journey and provide course corrections, we have an internal spirit that also gives us signs that we're on the right path.
Jody Stawicki, former faculty from 1987-2017, reprised "Notable Americans Revisited" to an enthusiastic class of alums of all ages, staff and reunion guests. There was much laughter and interest as "students" answered questions, took a mock quiz, and shared which notable American they would most like to meet. Their answers ranged from Harriet Tubman and FDR to Lady Gaga (a former Sacred Heart student!).
At lunch, classmates traded various stories, past and present. Afterwards, it was time for class with Dan Flaherty, former faculty from 1988-2006. He led a discussion about pivotal memories of Sacred Heart, which often involved stories of the RSCJ teachers, and how alums are continuing their lifelong learning. Many are learning languages and new technology, performing in theatrical productions or taking improv classes, creating art and producing electronic music.
Next, it was on to Katie Roeck's "Watercolors and Wine" class. Mrs. Roeck served on the faculty from 2010-2017. Each student received the same photograph of a lighthouse, a set of watercolors, paper to paint on, and a glass of wine (optional). The finished watercolors ranged from realistic to impressionistic to expressionistic, and all the student-artists walked away with their own painting (photo above) and a sense of an afternoon joyfully and artfully spent.
On Sunday, the celebration of Mass was dedicated to Astairre M. Dever ASH'62, who passed away recently. After the liturgy, Sr. Nancy Kehoe, RSCJ, PhD ASH'55 received the Sr. Carol A. Haggarty, RSCJ ASH'59 Leadership Award for her work that addresses mental health issues through increased spirituality. Carol Rae Culliton-Metzger, PhD, ASH'68 received the Sr. Catherine I. Seiker, RSCJ Award for her extensive contributions to philanthropic and charitable causes.
Alumni Weekend 2018 concluded at the Saddle & Cycle Club (photo below), which provided Academy and Hardey alums another chance to relax and reminisce. The bond that Sheridan Road alums share is a vibrant one, evidenced throughout the weekend by lively conversation, abundant good cheer, and a genuine affection for one another as well as the education they received.
We invite all students of SHS to attend a future reunion and reconnect with your classmates! To see the photos of the 2018 Reunion, click here.