Category: News & Information

Blue Hen Moments During Alumni Weekend

Nearly 1,700 Blue Hen alumni, friends and family came back to their UD home to celebrate at dozens of events during Alumni Weekend, May 31–June 2.

Highlights included reunions for the Classes of 1999, 2004, 2009, 2014 and 2019; a 5K and post-race party at Klondike Kate’s; a Drag Show; the Dining Hall Brunch with the Mascots; the Double Del Social; the Blue Hen Beer Garden with live music by Chorduroy; and the Rock the Roost Concert with Kristen and The Noise, which replaced the traditional Dela-bration event.

Kevin Linton, HS99, served as a reunion ambassador for the Class of 1999 event, which was combined with reunions for the Classes of 2004 and 2009 on Friday night in Perkins Student Center. It was the third time Linton has served as a reunion ambassador at UD.

“It’s always great to see old friends, spend time with them and bring back great memories,” said Linton, who announces the University of Delaware football and basketball home games, as well as the Wilmington Blue Rocks games.

“People know me from announcing, so alumni from the other classes in our reunion event recognized me and we reconnected on some things that we had fun remembering,” he said.

Also on Friday night, the UD Alumni Association honored recipients of the 2024 awards, including Emilie J. Delaye, a Class of 2024 graduate who received the Alexander J. Taylor Award for Outstanding Seniors. While Delaye was unable to attend the ceremony due to a flare-up of her chronic illness—for which she has launched a start-up to help other women dealing with chronic illness and gender inequality in healthcare—she was able to submit a video message.

In the video, she said, “This award reflects the outstanding people that I always had in my corner, and I believe that it symbolizes the true beauty of our university. It symbolizes our dedication to help each other achieve our own personal goals, to make our school and this world a better place.

“To sit in front of you today as someone who at one point early in my college career thought that graduating college would be an impossibility due to my health issues, I am living proof, breathing proof, that this college and the people here support and encourage every single student to be outstanding.”

On Saturday, Blue Hens geared up for a full day of activities, starting with a 5K in the morning and ending with a concert at night.

After traveling from Connecticut, Joshua, AS08, and Emily Cushing, AS06, and Nick Shaffer, AS08, made the most of their time at Alumni Weekend. In addition to staying in the dorm and attending the Dining Hall Brunch, Blue Hen Beer Garden and Rock the Roost Concert, they took advantage of another new offering, the DIY Lightsabers workshop in the Pearson Hall Makerspace.

The self-proclaimed “nerds” said the event intrigued them, but they weren’t sure what to expect—until they received an email the week before about wearing proper attire for soldering.

“It’s legit,” Shaffer said about the project, knowing that he’d make a lightsaber that would last the test of time. Shaffer had attended Alumni Weekend a few times since graduating.

At the Double Del Social, Lt. Col. Robert, EOE92, and Courtney (Roth) Lawrence, AS95, who goes by “Cory,” chatted with another couple who they just met.

“I mean, we’ve been married longer than they’ve been alive, but we immediately started talking because it’s like, we’re all Blue Hens,” Cory said. “There’s this real sense of community here at Alumni Weekend that I wasn’t expecting. It’s been really nice.”

Robert elaborated on their full schedule for the day: “We went to the brunch in Caesar Rodney Dining Hall, then the Drag Show, where I was victorious and became Queen for the day after a contest they had. Then I went with my oldest daughter, Kaitlyn, AS17, to the DIY Lightsaber workshop and then I met Cory here at the Double Del event. It’s been really fun, I’m glad we came.”

Alumni Weekend 2024 Blue Hen Beer Garden featuring live music by Chorduroy and a variety of beers including several local craft beers.

Later, at the Blue Hen Beer Garden, Andrew DeAscanis, AS14, attended with friends and one special furry companion, Baxter, whom he began training during his junior year at UD as part of Puppy Raisers of the University of Delaware (ProUD).

“Bringing Baxter back to campus – he knew all the places and remembered all the smells,” DeAscanis said. “It’s nostalgic for him and well as for me.”

The weekend provided an opportunity for Blue Hens to reunite with old friends, reminisce about their college days and make new memories. Alumni Weekend 2024 may have been different without Dela-bration, but the essence of the event—the celebration of shared experiences and the enduring Blue Hen pride—remained as strong as ever.

View photos from Alumni Weekend


Save the Date:

Join us back on campus for Homecoming on Saturday, October 26. We’ll also be celebrating reunions for the Classes of 1974, 1979, 1984, 1989 and 1994 that weekend.

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