During my college experience, weekends have served as a time to embrace my surroundings, which could mean anything from heading to a dance party to walking down Duke of Gloucester street to perusing the goodies at the Farmer’s Market to going to grab breakfast with good friends at Five Forks (which I went to for the first time this weekend—goodness gracious it was DELICIOUS). But there are only a select few weekends that finish & as hard as you try to figure out if anything bad happened, you cannot count a single momentous bad thing (other than stubbing your toe or forgetting your credit card at the grocery store—I got over both of those quickly).  This weekend was simply one of those weekends that made me realize (for the 932nd time) how much I love this place. It was filled with the beauty of tradition, uniqueness, & pure love for a common “place of universal study”—the College of William & Mary.

Reading from the Royal Charter – Charter Day Ceremony

On Friday, I was honored to be able to participate in reading the Royal Charter during the annual Charter Day Ceremony, where William & Mary celebrated its 319th birthday. Along with eight other students and one faculty member, I read an excerpt from this historical document and became a part of a long-held tradition. Being able to read the Charter and to participate so actively in the Charter Day Ceremony was fantastic and so very special. Hearing Robert Gates speak about his time at William & Mary, watching a dear professor be recognized for her years of service to the university, and hearing Monroe Prize recipient Molly Bulman speak on civic engagement all blew me away. I left the ceremony and headed to dinner with friends, still thinking back on the four years that I’ve had here in Williamsburg at this great university.

Drew Chlan ’13 & Kylee Ponder ’12 – Charter Day Dinner

The next night was just as special, as I was able to attend the annual Charter Day Dinner as a student table host. During the dinner, I sat at a table speckled with people like Provost Halleran and his wife, a fellow TriDelta sister and member of the Class of 1944, and Alumni Medallion recipient Ruth Tillar. Talking to people about their individual experiences at William & Mary and others at the dinner who were not alumni made me realize this strong connection that all of us have—the power of being a member of the Tribe. After the dinner was finished, I had the chance to introduce a video shot at the beginning of the fall that is showed at Alumni events around the country, and although I think it’s the slightest bit cheesy, it was fantastic watching the faces of alumni all around the room lighting up as they became somehow once again a student here at our beloved college.

After making my infamous banana puddin’ (see blogpost here) for some of my favorite friends and watching the SuperBowl over mugs & burgers at the Green Leafe last night, I realized that this weekend may have been perfect. Seeing the faces of alumni as they remembered what it was like to be at William & Mary, hearing Bob Gates joke around about his time here in the 1960’s, and jamming out to Third Eye Blind’s encore as they performed “Semi Charmed Life” all made me thankful for the experiences that I’ve had here and even more thankful that I am blessed enough to call myself a member of the Tribe.



Categories: Alumni Blogs, Campus Life, Charter Day, Student Blogs, Traditions & Events

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