More than 250 alumnae came back through the Red Doors for Reunion 2017 for multiple activities and events from April 27-29.
The festivities kicked off with Thursday’s Reunion Tea, held at the home of Head of School Bodie Brizendine, honored 1892 Society members and inductees.
Friday’s activities began with a luncheon, recognizing two alumnae for their accomplishments and service to Spence. Marcia Simpson Brose ’82, who was presented the Distinguished Alumnae Award for Professional Accomplishment as a pioneer in the field of advanced thyroid cancer treatments, explained how grateful she was for her parents’ hard-fought efforts to get her into Spence.
“The motto ‘Not for school but for life we learn’ has rang true my entire life,” she explained. “When you’re creating something, it can be very lonely. If it weren’t for Spence, I don’t know if I would have known to keep going. This school started preparing me before I even knew I needed to be prepared.”
Sheila Robinson ’82 was presented with the Distinguished Alumnae Award for Service to Spence, fully exemplifying the award through her service as a Reunion Board member, Head’s Council member, former Trustee, class representative and an Indispenceable.
“I am so proud to be part of this community,” she said. “It allowed me to find my voice and join my voice with others. My heart and roots are here for a lifetime.”
After remarks from Bodie, welcoming the Class of 2017 into the ranks of the Alumnae Association, the seniors made their way to the front of the room for the ceremonial receiving of the yellow roses. Class President Ava H. then spoke on behalf of the Class of 2017, explaining how despite the many different faces in the photos that line the walls of the Drawing Room, every Spence girl, past and present, is bonded.
Friday’s activities continued with Bodie’s View from the 7th Floor, a State of the Union of sorts for Spence, describing school initiatives and focus. Bodie was introduced by Amanda Toporek ’12, who described Bodie’s urging on Fridays to remember not to drink and drive.
“We all lived in New York City, so it would have been rare for any of us to know how to drive anyway. What she was really saying was, ‘I want you to have fun, but I want to see you back here on Monday.’ In other words, ‘Be smart, because I care about you,’” said Toporek.
Bodie went on to describe the commitment of the School’s Long Range Plan, the 125th anniversary of Spence and the focus on computer science. She also explained the progress of plans for the School’s 412 Athletic and Educational Facility.
The day concluded with a cocktail reception before breaking out into private celebrations for each class.
After Friday’s activities, many alumnae returned to Spence on Saturday for a morning brunch in the Lecture Hall, after which they also had the opportunity to take one of a variety of classes taught by heralded Spence faculty members. The day also included a tour of an exhibition dedicated to Spence’s history and guided by four pillars—Women in Leadership, Teaching and Learning, Service and Activism, and Adventure—honoring the 125th anniversary of Spence and curated by Sarah Hermanson Meister ’90, P’21.