The excitement is beginning to build as we look forward to the festivities of Homecoming (Friday, October 18). The entire student body will get swept up in Spirit Week and the Upper School students will get to enjoy their Homecoming dance on Saturday night. Our football team will go out and face off against a rival in what is always a packed stadium at Robertson Field. But when you trace Homecoming to its roots, it is really a time for our alumni to come home.
The Walker community is comprised of several groups including students, faculty/staff, parents, trustees and more, but our largest group, by far, is our alumni. With 1,976 alumni spread out across 33 graduating classes, our alumni are a diverse group. They range in age from late teens to early fifties and reside in some 37 U.S. states and nine other countries around the globe.
As one of those 1,976 graduates, I like to think that what makes Homecoming so special for our alumni is that it is a time to reflect on what has changed and, perhaps more importantly, what hasn’t changed at Walker.
For those who haven’t visited in several years, the changes may seem overwhelming at first. Relatively new and expansive buildings cover a campus that is more than twice the size it was when the school relocated here in 1977. Though football is now very much a part of Walker’s fabric, it is still practically a new creation having existed for only the last decade of Walker’s more than 55-year history.
Yet, what remains constant are those friends and those faculty members who, in truth, are more like family. As with any family, members grow older and new members are added as time passes, but Walker isn’t a place that people return to in order to see buildings. Walker is a place our alumni come home to each and every year to see each other and see those who have been a part of their lives for years – even decades.
To put on an event the size and scale of Homecoming takes nearly a year of planning and the support of many of our school’s staff as well our Alumni Board. But what makes all the effort worth it are the scenes you see in the few photos shared here – of old friends reuniting, of children being introduced to classmates, of alumni once again seeing their favorite teacher. That’s what it means for our alumni to come home to Walker.