Orange Alert

Welcoming Back Our Alumni

Posted on: Oct. 29, 2021

Dear A&S students, faculty and staff,

As the University’s largest college, A&S has a sizable presence on campus. Did you know that we can be found in more than 20 buildings here and downtown? Or that A&S | Maxwell faculty teach 56% of all SU undergraduate courses? Naturally, this scope translates to our alumni population, too. In fact, A&S boasts a global membership of 70,000 strong!

During this Orange Central reunion weekend (Thursday, October 28th – Sunday, October 31st), I ask you to reflect on the importance and meaning of our alumni family. I don’t just mean that a huge, helpful network awaits students upon graduation. I’m also so grateful for their willingness to visit our classes, host immersions or participate in campus events. This desire to help came through strong during the height of the pandemic, when hundreds of caring A&S graduates leapt to the assistance of current students by offering one-on-one mentorship sessions, hosting virtual career conversations and internships, and donating to scholarship funds. And now, some of these loyal friends are coming “home.”

But what draws A&S alumni back to Syracuse—some from great distances or after many (including 60+) years—for the Orange Central weekend? To relive their memories, certainly. But also to reconnect with friends, continue learning at our academic-focused events, and most importantly, to be a part of something much bigger than themselves—to draw inspiration and energy from the A&S ethos (of thinking freely, acting ethically and living decisively). They come, in short, to create another, living layer of meaning and memory. 

After everything we’ve all been through the past nineteen months, community and connection matter more than ever. So, when you see alumni here on Halloween weekend, I ask you to consider them as family and be part of their new memories of A&S and SU. This could be as simple as a warm greeting, helping them get oriented, or asking a question about their plans. Or it could involve asking about their best memory or encouraging them to follow us on social media (;; or   I know that any gesture given with heart will bring a bit of much-needed joy to our visiting alumni and their families.


Karin Ruhlandt