Class of '77
September 2002

REUNION TIME!

25 Years

That’s right, twenty-five years.  Many, many things have happened since.  Take disco for example.  Or maybe Milli-Vanilli.  How about the Plymouth Reliant?  Or, sadly, the Nicollet House Bar and Lounge.  Many things come and go over 25 years.  Few things endure.

But, we’ve endured.  We’re all somewhere around 47 years old.  For 97% of us, we’re well over half way through life.  How did I get here so fast?  It seems like years are speeding by, sometimes two at a time.  I know each one is 365 days long, but somehow the richness of life shortens each of those days.  There’s something in the back of my mind that tells me, seeing the faces of my classmates from 25 years ago, will slow things down, just a little.  So I’ll be at the reunion.

Its not that I look back on my time at Gustavus wishing I was there again.  I don’t. My life now is too rich to dwell on such simple, and idyllic, times.   But still, I think there is  immeasurable value in reconnecting with the people and the institution that launched us on our life’s journey.  So, I’ll be at the reunion.

Let’s face it, we are all 25 years beyond that big day in 1977 when we were cut loose, off and running (occasional walking, moments of crawling) through life’s adventure.  Sure, I have a lot less hair on my head, many more wrinkles on my face and a few more inches on the waistline.  But rather than thinking of those imperfections as signs of aging, I wear them as badges of experience.  So don’t let your experiences get in the way of enjoying a bit of fellowship on September 20th and 21st .

Here are the details:

·        September 20th  – 7:00 p.m. - Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres in the cities at the Radisson South

·        September 21st  - Campus activities, including football game, arboretum tours, class lunch tailgating, Homecoming parade (remember those?), Chapel, Fun Run and many other activities.  For all the info go to:  gustavus.edu.

We have established a Class of ’77 Anniversary Gift.  This will be an endowment that will fund scholarships and financial aid for students.  More information will be forthcoming. 

News from Campus:

Welcome Class of 2006

Approximately 690 new students arrived on campus this fall keeping the total student enrollment just over 2500.  There are many interesting opportunities for first year students even before school starts with a community service immersion experience in the Twin Cities, a cultural study in Paris and a wilderness experience in the Boundary Waters.

Gustavus named a “Best Buy”

The Fiske Guide has again named Gustavus one of forty-three “Best Buys” in the country.  This is based on an exceptional investment of tuition money for an exceptional education.

Hello Walk Online Community is featuring several discussions this fall including Nobel Conference Director Tim Robinson discussing nature vs. nurture, and Political Science Professor Don Ostrom discussing the upcoming elections.  Join the conversation by going to <http://hellowalk.gustavus.edu>

Gustie students starting a new community service initiative called the AMIGOS program.  The 65 Spanish speaking volunteers serve the growing Chicano-Latino population in St. Peter by providing after-school tutoring, teaching ESL classes to adults and serve as big partners.  This program is in addition to the other on-going and one-time service opportunities that 75% of students participate in while at Gustavus.

Building a Great Gustavus Campaign was launched to the public on Saturday, September 7.  Since the tornadoes of 1998, the campaign has raised $77 million toward a $100 million goal.  The focus of the remainder of the campaign is on funding renovations in Old Main, growing endowment, and increasing gifts and participation in the Gustavus Alumni Fund.  Your personal financial support  and your leadership are needed and greatly appreciated.

Minnesota Legislature Cuts Financial Aid

Due to cuts with the Minnesota State Legislature, Gustavus lost $400,000 in money for student employment.  The college continues to work hard to meet financial needs of students since nearly 80% of Gustavus students receive financial assistance.  This includes $14 million from the colleges own budget.  Your support of the annual fund goes directly to help these students and is especially needed to help make up the financial gap for these current students.

Upcoming Events

Contact the Alumni Office for more information at 800/487-8437, e-mail at <alumni@gustavus.edu> or on the web under the alumni section at <gustavus.edu>.

Class Reunions – September 20

For the Classes of 1957, 1962, 1967, 1972, 1977, 1982, 1987, 1992, 1997 to be held in the Twin Cities.

Homecoming – September 21

Celebration of the100th Anniversary of Gustavus Intercollegiate athletics.  Did you know that 25% of current students participate in at least one of the twenty-five intercollegiate sports and 75% of students participate in over 30 intramural and 11 club sports at Gustavus.

Nobel Conference, The Nature of Nurture is October 1 & 2 focusing on child development.

Christmas in Christ Chapel is December 6 & 7―the theme this year will be songs, stories and legends from Scandinavia.

Finally, this will be my last class letter to you as a class agent.  My dedication has slipped over the past few years, and my life has caught up with me.  Between my kid’s (Si 17, Gretchen 14 and Hunter 8) activities, my job, and my own outside interests, I just can’t do the kind of job that should be done in such an important position.  Al will continue on as “co” class agent.  But the question is, who will be his partner?  If you have interest or just questions please contact Al (al@gac.edu) or me (matth5@aol.com).  I can honestly say every minute that I have put in was rewarding, it’s just that I have too few minutes these days.

See you at the reunion,                                                                                                                         

Si Matthies

1977 Co-class Agent