by Sami Antaki
Last week, hundreds of alumni from across the country came home to a university that was at once eye-opening and familiar. They rekindled memories and friendships, and took part in lectures, tributes, open houses, vernissages, and fundraising opportunities organized by the Alumni Office.
They also helped launch the Alumni and Friends Division of the Campaign for a New Millennium. The Campaign, which has already raised more than $45 million, is gearing up to contact more than 60,000 former students during the next nine months.
"Homecoming was the perfect way to introduce the Campaign to our graduates and highlight the many initiatives that will move Concordia forward into the next century," said Ann Vroom, Director of Alumni Affairs. "It was also an opportunity for the Concordia University Alumni Associations (CUAA) to participate in the fundraising process."
The CUAA and the Alumni Office organized the Molson Centre EXTRAvaganza, a gala party and auction that brought nearly 300
people together for a spirited evening. The night, which was
built around a Montreal Canadiens/Toronto Maple Leafs exhibition game, featured live and silent auctions that raised nearly $100,000 for the Campaign.
"The money raised is significant, but not nearly as telling as the impact that alumni participation will have on the Campaign," said Don Taddeo, Campaign Executive Vice-Chair. "We are expecting tremendous results from the involvement of each of our alumni associations. Given the positive reaction we received throughout Homecoming, and especially at the Rector's Reunion Dinner, we are extremely encouraged."
Reunion attendees and Campaign volunteers turned out for many of the Homecoming events, from the lecture by economic journalist Diane Francis to the family skate at the Molson Centre. They walked away with the feeling that Concordia is a dynamic university, held in high regard by its graduates.
For more on Homecoming and the annual Shuffle, see Ninth Annual Concordia Shuffle