A Weekend of Traditions Among Family and Friends

I love Wellesley traditions. I love that we have so many of them, including the ones that generations of Wellesley women have experienced, serving as a rite of passage for new students. I also enjoy the traditions that have emerged more recently. This past weekend, as part of Family and Friends Weekend and Homecoming, I got to enjoy both the old and the new.

The first—one of our more recent traditions—was the parade of “floats” (or, golf carts). Beginning over by the East Side residence halls and following College Road up and around to the Athletic Fields, the Blue Nation Parade showed the creativity of the students who decorated the floats. The parade added some lively color to campus, despite the overcast sky.

Shortly after the parade, I participated in one of Wellesley’s oldest traditions—sophomore tree planting. This tradition is almost as old as the College, as it dates back to 1877 when our founder, Henry Durant, wanted Wellesley students to have “… a tree, whose growth they could watch, as it watched theirs, all through the four college years—a tree in which, on every future visit, they would recognize a long-acquainted friend.” Since then, hundreds of trees have been planted. And hundreds of Wellesley classes, upon returning to campus years after graduating, have sought out their class tree—taking note of how it is doing, how it has grown, and how it complements the beauty of our campus. This year’s sophomore class planted a lovely dogwood near Hay Amphitheater.

This past weekend, it was a privilege to welcome Wellesley family and friends to campus, and to welcome back alumnae for Homecoming. I hope our visitors enjoyed these Wellesley traditions as much as I did.

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