On a cold but snowless weekend in February, an enthusiastic group of alumni returned to the Middlesex campus to celebrate and discuss issues surrounding diversity in our community throughout the decades. The event was organized around the School’s annual Diversity Weekend and began with dinner at the Head’s House on Friday night followed by a chance to attend a presentation by students in the theater. Following those events, alumni headed to the Aloft Hotel in Lexington to relax and catch up with old friends and mentors over hors d’oeuvres and drinks. The group included alumni across five decades, including two from the 1970s who returned from as far away as Georgia and Pennsylvania, as well as recent graduates who traveled by train, car and bus from colleges throughout the Northeast.
Saturday morning began with a stirring address from Rev. Joe Watkins ’71, who recalled his own journey to Middlesex and implored the current students to use their education to make a difference in their communities. Breakout sessions followed with alumni joining both students and faculty for small group discussions around issues related to diversity, as well as attending a session aimed at discussing further multicultural alumni events and programs. Everyone reconvened in the theater to witness the stirring performance of RASH, a one-woman play by Jenni Wolfson based on her experiences as a U.N. human rights worker in post-genocide Rwanda in the 1990s.
The day concluded with lunch in the student center for alumni, faculty, staff and current students. Cinda Scott ’95 summed up the experiences of the weekend when she remarked,
“Every time I return to campus I learn something new about the school and this weekend was no exception; the importance of the events cannot be overstated. Middlesex is a part of my history and hearing the stories of other alumni and students from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds only helped me to realize how truly special the Middlesex experience was not only because of the bonds created with other individuals, but because when you return you are reminded that you are an integral part of the life and legacy of the School. I had a chance to meet Duane Jones ’70, the first African American graduate of Middlesex, as well as meeting many current students and share my stories and hear theirs. It is my hope that students, especially students of color at Middlesex, realize that there is a community of support beyond the Lowell Road campus, that they are valued and that they are a very important part of Middlesex history.”
From everyone’s standpoint, this inaugural alumni event was a big success, and we look forward to future multicultural alumni events both on campus and throughout the country. If you would like to be contacted about events in the future, please send an email to John Morrissey, Director of Alumni Relations at firstname.lastname@example.org.