Year-round our team works to ensure that our alumni stay engaged and connected to their alma mater. One of our most effective methods of staying connected is by visting our alumni and sitting down one-on-one. There’s really no substitute for hearing from alums in-person as it provides the opportunity to fully connect through hearing tales from their tenure by the Lakeside, learning about their chapters post-Darlington, absorbing the conviction and emotion with which they communicate, and providing highlights from campus.
One of my recent visits with an alumnus was particularly interesting. I had the privilege of connecting with an alum who graduated in the 1950’s. Throughout the course of our chat, he shared a variety of entertaining stories and fond memories. He explained how he navigated his path post-Darlington and where he landed along the way- both personally and professionally. He, of course, was curious to hear headlines from campus, to which I gladly updated him on campus news and our advancement initiatives.
From our laughs to his heartfelt appreciation for all that Darlington impressed upon him, our chat was quite pleasant. While our enjoyable conversation combined with this alums’ generosity to Darlington were impressionable dynamics, another factor enriched our connection even further: his nearly century of affiliation with the institution. This alumnus graduated in the 1950’s and his father matriculated to Darlington in the 1920’s. For nearly one hundred years, this alum’s family has contributed to Darlington’s story.
It is no secret that legacy families possess a special pride of affiliation, and Darlington has no shortage of legacies in her history. However, this was my first deep dive with an alum, one-on-one, who possessed such a protracted connection to the school. It caused me to reflect on both the differences and similarities of Darlington from then to now. And it amplified the notion of Tiger Pride running deep. I certainly look forward to my upcoming visits with alums, and to all of our legacy families, we send our sincere appreciation and admiration, now and in the century ahead!