Alumni Association sets dates for 2017 Homecoming celebration

Posted on Jan 19, 2017 in Campus News and News

Homecoming Save the Date
The University of Kansas will celebrate Homecoming Oct. 1-7, 2017, culminating in the KU football game against Texas Tech University Oct. 7 in Memorial Stadium.

The KU Alumni Association and a student-led steering committee will coordinate the week of Homecoming activities. Jacey Krehbiel, assistant director of alumni programs, serves as advisor to the steering committee. KU’s Homecoming tradition began in 1912.

Homecoming leaders will meet throughout the spring semester to select a theme and finalize the schedule of activities, which will include competitions for student organizations, community service activities, various reunions, the Homecoming parade and pep rally, and the selection of 10 student finalists for the Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership Awards (ExCEL). The winners will be announced during halftime of the football game Oct. 7.

The Alumni Association will continue to update the Homecoming website as information becomes available.

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Homecoming queen relives her moment in KU history

Posted on Nov 10, 2016 in Campus News and News

img_news_barbara_keating_2For one loyal alumna, a recent trip to Mount Oread turned into an unexpectedly delightful trip down memory lane. While attending the Presidents Club tailgate Oct. 22 at the Adams Alumni Center, just hours before the KU-OSU Homecoming football game, Barbara Schmidt Keating, d’63, and her husband, Con, c’63, were stunned to see a photo of Barbara, the University’s Homecoming queen in 1962, on display in a campus yearbook.

“They had a table set up with a display of previous Homecomings by decade,” Barbara explains. “We just walked past the table and there in the 1960s was the yearbook and my picture. We were both just shocked.”

The display was courtesy of KU Libraries, which partnered this year with the Alumni Association to showcase historical photos and memorabilia of campus life for alumni and friends to enjoy during Presidents Club tailgates.

Upon spotting the Keatings’ surprise—and overhearing Con exclaim, “Well, here she is, right here!”—KU Libraries staff snapped photos of the former Homecoming queen with the yearbook, capturing yet another campus keepsake for Jayhawks to enjoy.

“It was a huge honor, it really was,” Barbara says, recalling the moment she was crowned more than 50 years ago. “They made the announcement outside of Strong Hall; everybody was out there. It was such a surprise, because there were so many wonderful girls who were candidates. It was just really a nice occasion.”

–Heather Biele

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University of Kansas concludes 104th Homecoming celebration

Posted on Oct 26, 2016 in Campus News and News

Homecoming 2016

The University of Kansas celebrated its 104th Homecoming Oct. 16-22. The annual event was organized by the KU Alumni Association and a student-led Homecoming steering committee, which was directed by Katie Gerard, a Hanover senior in supply chain management. She worked with Alumni Association adviser Jacey Krehbiel, assistant director of alumni programs. Homecoming sponsors were Crown Automotive, Coca Cola and Kansas Athletics.

The theme for this year’s event was “Rock Chalk Super Hawk.” Students and alumni participated in several activities throughout the week, including competitions, community service opportunities and reunions. Members of the KU and Lawrence communities collected more than a ton of non-perishable food items for Just Food of Douglas County during the Stuff the Bus competition. They also donated more than 1,000 books for the Lawrence for Literacy Children’s Book Drive, which was sponsored by the Homecoming steering committee and the United Way of Douglas County.

The Homecoming parade was Friday, Oct. 21, on Massachusetts Street in downtown Lawrence and featured Bob Davis, the former play-by-play voice of Kansas Jayhawk football and men’s basketball, and 2016 Olympic gold medalist and former KU track and field sprinter Kyle Clemons as grand marshals. A pep rally at Eighth and New Hampshire streets followed the parade. The weeklong celebration culminated with a KU football game against Oklahoma State University Saturday, Oct. 22, in Memorial Stadium.

The 2016 Homecoming event and award winners are:

ExCEL Awards
Jordan Hildenbrand, a senior from Blue Springs, Missouri, majoring in chemical engineering
Abdoulie Njai, a senior from Wichita majoring in human biology

Jennifer Alderdice Homecoming Award
Sarah Pickert, a junior from Wichita majoring in visual communication in graphic design

Rich and Judy Billings Spirit of 1912 Award
Linda Ellis Sims, e’79, from Independence, Missouri

Overall Winners

Greek Life
1st place: Alpha Delta Pi, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, Delta Lambda Phi
2nd place: Delta Delta Delta, Theta Chi, Alpha Kappa Lambda
3rd place: Alpha Chi Omega, Delta Tau Delta, Beta Sigma Psi

Student Life
1st place: Omega Phi Alpha, Beta Upsilon Chi
2nd place: KU School of Engineering
3rd place: Student Union Activities, The Big Event, KJHK

For more information and a complete list of competition winners, visit homecoming.ku.edu.

 

2016 KU HomecomingKU’s 104th Homecoming celebration, Rock Chalk Super Hawk, takes place Oct. 16-22. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit www.kualumni.org/homecoming. Share your photos with us by posting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Click here to read more stories about Homecoming.

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2016 Ex.C.E.L. Award winners announced at Homecoming game

Posted on Oct 22, 2016 in Campus News and News

Abjoulie Njai, 2016 Ex.C.E.L. Award winner

Two University of Kansas seniors received the 26th annual Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership Awards during halftime of the KU-Oklahoma State Homecoming football game Oct. 22 in Memorial Stadium.

The 2016 Ex.C.E.L. award winners are Jordan Hildenbrand of Blue Springs, Missouri, and Abdoulie Njai of Wichita.

Jordan Hildenbrand, who is majoring in engineering, is the daughter of Wendy Hildenbrand of Blue Springs, Missouri, and the late Wade Hildenbrand. She is a member of the Self Engineering Leadership Fellows Class of 2016 and a KU Admissions student ambassador. She is a member of Delta Gamma sorority and has served on the Homecoming Steering Committee. She has also conducted research at KU and the Mayo Clinic.

Abdoulie Njai, a human biology major, is the son of Ousman and Mariama Njai of Wichita. He is director of diversity and inclusion in Student Senate and president of the Minority Association of Premedical Students. He is a member of Phi Delta Epsilon premedical fraternity, where he serves as academic chair, and he also served as a Hawk Link guide for the Office of Multicultural Affairs.

The Ex.C.E.L. Award provides an annual $250 award to two students. The winners will present at the Blueprints Leadership Conference next spring in conjunction with KU’s Student Involvement and Leadership Center.

The winners were selected from among 10 finalists on the basis of leadership, effective communication skills, involvement at KU and in the Lawrence community, academic scholarship and ability to work with a variety of students and organizations. The selection committee included representatives from Student Union Activities, the Board of Class Officers, the Student Involvement and Leadership Center, and the Homecoming Steering Committee.

The award was established in 1991 to recognize one male and one female student for achievement and to add student interest to annual Homecoming festivities. To be eligible, applicants must be full-time undergraduate students with an overall grade-point average of 3.0 or higher. Each finalist completed an application and participated in an interview.

Jordan Hildenbrand, 2016 Ex.C.E.L. Award winner
 

2016 KU HomecomingKU’s 104th Homecoming celebration, Rock Chalk Super Hawk, takes place Oct. 16-22. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit www.kualumni.org/homecoming. Share your photos with us by posting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Click here to read more stories about Homecoming.

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Creative collaboration produces Homecoming float

Posted on Oct 21, 2016 in Campus News and News

Students in the Design-Build class at Lawrence College and Career Center built a Homecoming float
University of Kansas students weren’t the only ones celebrating Homecoming this week.

Students in the design-build class at the Lawrence College and Career Center showed off their skills—and their KU spirit—with an unusual class project: a float for the Homecoming parade.

The students collaborated with Truity Credit Union, a big supporter of the local school district and sponsor of the Alumni Association’s Home Football Fridays and TGIT receptions.

“When the opportunity to have an entry into the KU Homecoming Parade presented itself, we jumped at the chance,” said Tim Mock, c’00, business development officer for Truity. “We realized that using staff to build a float wasn’t a viable option, so it only made sense to reach out to the students at the Lawrence College and Career Center for help.”

Staff members at the credit union were aware of the students’ previous work on the Douglas County CASA playhouse and knew they would produce a quality float in a short amount of time.

Truity provided a trailer and a budget for the students and off they went, crafting a papier mâché Jayhawk and a replica of the Campanile.

The most challenging part of building the float, according to student Patrick Oblon, was figuring out how to fit everything on the trailer. “The best part was working together to make the float look good,” he said.

His classmate Abby Parsons explained that they had to measure things several times to get the Campanile just right.

“It was a really cool experience getting to support KU,” said Ross Lutzkannin, who also pitched in on the project.

Students in the Design-Build class at Lawrence College and Career Center built a Homecoming float

Students in the Design-Build class at Lawrence College and Career Center built a Homecoming float

Students in the Design-Build class at Lawrence College and Career Center built a Homecoming float

img_news_hc_design_build_jayhawk

Photos provided by Ceridwen Goulter, Lawrence Career College and Career Center

2016 KU HomecomingKU’s 104th Homecoming celebration, Rock Chalk Super Hawk, takes place Oct. 16-22. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit www.kualumni.org/homecoming. Share your photos with us by posting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Click here to read more stories about Homecoming.

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Superhero skills showcased at annual Jayhawk Jingles event

Posted on Oct 20, 2016 in Campus News and News

Jayhawk Jingles 2016 | www.kualumni.org

Students came out in droves Wednesday night to show off their Homecoming spirit for the annual Jayhawk Jingles competition and Food Fest. As the crowd filled the parking lot at the Adams Alumni Center, lines formed to sample free food provided by Paisano’s Ristorante, Pita Pit, the Mad Greek, HyVee Market Grille and Hot Box Cookies, and six sorority-fraternity teams huddled up for last-minute preparations before taking the stage.

Participants didn’t disappoint as they displayed their talents in musical performances that honored this year’s Homecoming theme, “Rock Chalk Super Hawk.” More than one team altered the lyrics to the popular song, “I Need a Hero,” and another team performed a comedy skit that depicted Jayhawks overpowering the Oklahoma State Cowboys to win Saturday’s football game. The crowd cheered as one student landed a perfect forward flip after missing the mark on his first attempt. The evening also provided the perfect opportunity for students to dress up as their favorite superheroes, including Batman, Spiderman and Superman.

Judging the event were Catherine Carmichael, c’14; LaRisa Chambers, c’95; and Linda Ellis Sims, e’79, who received the Rich and Judy Billings Spirit of 1912 Award. The award honors Jayhawks who consistently display school spirit, pride and tradition throughout their lives. A stalwart KU volunteer, Sims received the 2011 Fred Ellsworth Medallion for her years of service.

“There’s a reason KU is special,” Heath Peterson, d’04, g’09, president of the Alumni Association, told the crowd as he introduced Sims. “You’re having this experience because of Jayhawks like Linda.”

The winners of this year’s competition were:

First place: Delta Delta Delta, Theta Chi, Alpha Kappa Lambda
Second place: Alpha Delta Pi, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, Delta Lambda Phi
Third place: Sigma Kappa, Pi Kappa Alpha, Multicultural Greek Council

Watch a slideshow of pictures below, or click here to view the photos on Flickr. Photos may be downloaded for personal use.
 

HMC_jayhawk_jingles_crowd_ds_10_2016_12691

 

2016 KU HomecomingKU’s 104th Homecoming celebration, Rock Chalk Super Hawk, takes place Oct. 16-22. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit www.kualumni.org/homecoming. Share your photos with us by posting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Click here to read more stories about Homecoming.
 

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Students rock the chalk on Wescoe Beach

Posted on Oct 19, 2016 in Campus News and News

Chalk 'n' Rock 2016
Wescoe Beach was filled with colorful chalk art Tuesday, Oct. 18, as student organizations paired up to decorate pre-determined squares with creations depicting this year’s Homecoming theme, Rock Chalk Super Hawk.

The popular annual competition had 11 entries from both Greek life and student life groups. Omega Phi Alpha and Beta Upsilon Chi took first place in the student life category, with the team made up of students from Student Union Activities, The Big Event and KJKH placing second.

In the Greek life division, first place was awarded to Alpha Delta Pi, Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Delta Lambda Phi. Alpha Chi Omega, Delta Tau Delta and Beta Sigma Psi took second, and Sigma Kappa, Pi Kappa Alpha and the Multicultural Greek Council team placed third.

Watch our slideshow of photos from Chalk ‘n’ Rock below, or click here to view the pictures on Flickr. Photos may be downloaded for personal use. A short video interviewing participants is also embedded below.

HMC_chalk_n_rock_ds_10_2016_11954

 

 

2016 KU HomecomingKU’s 104th Homecoming celebration, Rock Chalk Super Hawk, takes place Oct. 16-22. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit www.kualumni.org/homecoming. Share your photos with us by posting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Click here to read more stories about Homecoming.
 

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Longtime KU volunteer Linda Ellis Sims to receive Homecoming Spirit of 1912 Award

Posted on Oct 18, 2016 in Campus News and News

Homecoming float

img_news_sims_interview_spirit2The University of Kansas Alumni Association and the student-led Homecoming Steering Committee have named Linda Ellis Sims of Independence, Missouri, as the winner of this year’s Rich and Judy Billings Spirit of 1912 Award. The annual award recognizes Jayhawks who consistently display school spirit, pride and tradition throughout their lives.

Sims will receive her award during Homecoming Food Fest and Jayhawk Jingles at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 19, at the Adams Alumni Center.

Sims graduated from the School of Engineering in 1979 and has served on the school’s advisory board since 1990, including a term as chair. She also served on the Chemical and Petroleum Engineering advisory board and the Diversity & Women’s Programs advisory board. In 2014, she was recognized as a Distinguished Engineering Alumna. She and her husband, Russ, are Life Members of the Alumni Association and contributors to its Presidents Club. She led a network of Jayhawks in Houston and served on the Association’s national Board of Directors from 1991 to 1993. In 2011, she received the Association’s Fred Ellsworth Medallion for her outstanding volunteer service to KU. She is a KU Endowment trustee and executive committee member, and she helped guide the recent Far Above campaign as a member of the steering committee. A former KU swimmer, she is a K-Club member and donor to the Williams Education Fund.

The Spirit of 1912 Award commemorates the first year of KU’s Homecoming and honors Rich and Judy Billings of Lakewood, Colorado, who in 2011 created an endowment to fund future editions of Homecoming. The Billings, both 1957 KU graduates, will attend their 57th KU Homecoming celebration this year.

The theme for KU’s 104th Homecoming is “Rock Chalk Super Hawk.” The Homecoming parade begins at 6 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21, on Massachusetts Street in downtown Lawrence. This year’s grand marshals are Bob Davis, the former play-by-play voice of Kansas Jayhawk football and men’s basketball, and 2016 Olympic gold medalist and former KU track and field sprinter Kyle Clemons. A pep rally at Eighth and New Hampshire streets will follow the parade.

2016 KU HomecomingKU’s 104th Homecoming celebration, Rock Chalk Super Hawk, takes place Oct. 16-22. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit www.kualumni.org/homecoming. Share your photos with us by posting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Click here to read more stories about Homecoming.
 

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Ten KU seniors named finalists for 26th annual Ex.C.E.L. Awards

Posted on Oct 14, 2016 in Campus News and News

Homecoming float
Ten finalists have been selected for the 26th annual Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership Awards at the University of Kansas. The finalists, all seniors, will participate in the Homecoming parade at 6 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21, along Massachusetts Street in downtown Lawrence. Two winners, one male and one female, will be announced during halftime of the KU-Oklahoma State Homecoming football game Oct. 22 at Memorial Stadium.

The Ex.C.E.L. Award provides an annual $250 scholarship to two students. The winners will present at the Blueprints Leadership Conference next spring in conjunction with KU’s Student Involvement and Leadership Center. Nominees were selected on the basis of leadership, effective communication skills, involvement at KU and in the Lawrence community, academic scholarship and ability to work with a variety of students and organizations. The selection committee included representatives from Student Union Activities, the Board of Class Officers, the Student Involvement and Leadership Center and the Homecoming Steering Committee.

The award was first given in 1991 to recognize one male and one female student for achievement. Names of winners are listed on a plaque on the fifth level of the Kansas Union. To be eligible, applicants must be full-time undergraduate students with an overall grade-point average of 3.0 or higher. Each finalist completed an application and participated in an interview. The finalists and their academic majors are listed below, along with highlights of their campus achievements.

JOHNSON COUNTY

From Gardner

Stephonn Alcorn, finance, is student body president. He was a member of Student Senate, where he served as director of government relations, and he also served as director of member and leadership development of the Interfraternity Council. He has been a peer mentor for the School of Business and the Black Student Union. He is a first-generation college student and Hawk Link graduate.

From Leawood

Kevin Tenny, chemical engineering, is an engineering student senator and co-founded the Electrochemical Society at KU. He has worked for three years as a teaching assistant for the Kansas Algebra Program, and he has conducted research at Iowa State University, the University of South Carolina and MIT. He was awarded the national Barry M. Goldwater scholarship in spring 2016.

From Olathe

Sean Murray, business and journalism, is president of the Student Endowment Board and vice president of the advertising club. He is a member of Beta Sigma Psi fraternity, where he serves as recruitment chair.

From Prairie Village

Elizabeth Gray, business management and applied behavioral science, serves on the Panhellenic Association, where she is director of interfraternal relations and member development. She is a member of Kappa Alpha Theta sorority and is a CARE sister. She is president of the Society of Human Resources Management Club and works as a peer instructor and adviser in Business Career Services.

From Stilwell

Rajvi Shah, neurobiology, psychology and French, was president of the Honors Program Student Council. She served on the Student Health Advisory Board and the executive boards of MEDLife KU, the KU Society of Scientists and the South Asian Student Association. In 2015, she was honored as a KU Woman of Distinction, and she received the Kathleen McCluskey-Fawcett Outstanding Contribution Award in 2016.

POTTAWATOMIE COUNTY

From Wamego

BreShawna Briggs, management and leadership with a minor in leadership studies, was vice president of Mortar Board. She has been involved with the Kansas Women’s Leadership Institute for three years, and she helped found the Women’s Leadership from the Heartland Program. She was the finance coordinator for Alternative Breaks.

SEDGWICK COUNTY

From Wichita

Abdoulie Njai, human biology, is director of diversity and inclusion in Student Senate and president of the Minority Association of Premedical Students. He is a member of Phi Delta Epsilon premedical fraternity, where he serves as academic chair.

SHAWNEE COUNTY

From Topeka

Travis Kesinger, elementary education, is a member of Alpha Tau Omega fraternity and serves as director of member development and leadership on the Interfraternity Council. He is executive director of KU Dance Marathon and a member of the University’s Sexual Assault Task Force. He was student leadership coordinator for the Student Involvement and Leadership Center, and he served on the executive board for KU’s Big Event.

WASHINGTON COUNTY

From Hanover

Katie Gerard, supply chain management and information systems, is president of the supply chain management club and senior vice president of Delta Sigma Pi business fraternity. She is vice president of administration for the School of Business Ambassador Program, and she also serves as a teaching assistant and peer mentor in the school. She has served on the Homecoming Steering Committee for two years.

MISSOURI

From Blue Springs

Jordan Hildenbrand, chemical engineering, is a member of the Self Engineering Leadership Fellows Class of 2016 and a KU Admissions student ambassador. She is a member of Delta Gamma sorority and has served on the Homecoming Steering Committee. She also has conducted research at KU and the Mayo Clinic.

2016 KU HomecomingKU’s 104th Homecoming celebration, Rock Chalk Super Hawk, takes place Oct. 16-22. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit www.kualumni.org/homecoming. Share your photos with us by posting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Click here to read more stories about Homecoming.
 

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