Tennessee Wesleyan's 2012 Homecoming celebrates pride and tradition

Posted on: October 9, 2012

Spanning three days and over twenty events, Tennessee Wesleyan College's 2012 Homecoming was host to more than 300 college alumni and friends who gathered together on the college's campus to celebrate 155 years of pride and tradition.

Spanning three days and over twenty events, Tennessee Wesleyan College’s 2012 Homecoming  was host to more than 300 college alumni and friends who gathered together on the college’s campus to celebrate 155 years of pride and tradition. Today’s TWC students enjoyed fellowship with TWC alumni who returned to their alma mater to rekindle cherished memories and revisit the birthplace of their college educations.

“I was thrilled to see so many alumni returning to campus to connect with classmates and teammates,” said Dr. Harley Knowles, TWC president. “I was very much overwhelmed with the depth of feeling that Wesleyan elicits from our former students.”

From the Friday night Party Gras on College St., where TWC students enjoyed a shrimp boil with visiting alumni, to the Saturday evening Blue and Gold Gala where eight award recipients were honored with alumni and athletic hall of fame awards, TWC’s 2012 Homecoming was a three-day celebration that brought alumni in from all over the country, some flying and many driving in for the weekend’s festivities.

“Homecoming 2012 was a wonderful success,” said Jessica Edwards, TWC director of alumni relations and annual fund, who is in charge of planning the college’s Homecoming events every year.

“I had a wonderful time with my fellow alumni celebrating 155 years of pride and tradition and it was great to see so many alumni back at their alma mater. I love the fact that I get to be a part of something so special. I enjoyed spending time with the alumni and listening to stories of their experiences at TWC.”

This year TWC had a lot of recent accomplishments to celebrate throughout the Homecoming festivities. The men’s baseball team’s NAIA World Series championship win was applauded at a Friday evening ring ceremony and banquet where the winners received their championship rings and college and community representatives congratulated the champions. A Saturday morning baseball brunch and reception at the McMinn County Living Heritage Museum launched the museum’s newest exhibit featuring the history of Tennessee Wesleyan baseball.

In addition to celebrating TWC athletics through the ring ceremony, museum reception and various alumni/student games throughout the weekend, other TWC student activities were on display at the majority of the Homecoming events. A student art exhibit featured new pieces from TWC students and the annual Lip Sync contest showcased TWC student organization’s carefully choreographed musical numbers. As usual, the Tennessee Wesleyan Concert Choir's annual performance with alumni choir members was a special treat for Homecoming guests.

“There is something genuinely special about bringing alumni back to campus to reconnect with one another and their alma mater,” said Anne Montgomery, TWC president of the alumni board of directors and director of the athens evening program.

“TWC Homecoming is an excellent opportunity for alumni to come back to campus and fellowship with one another and current students as well as to see how the college has flourished and grown in the past few decades. This is truly an exciting time for Tennessee Wesleyan.”

At Saturday’s Homecoming barbeque lunch on Wesley Commons Lawn, President Knowles addressed college faculty and staff, alumni, friends and students, proudly looking back on the college’s achievements throughout the past year. From record enrollment to becoming a graduate degree granting institution, Tennessee Wesleyan met and exceeded many of its goals for the year.

“In the past few months we launched our first completely online program, an RN to BSN, as well as our first graduate program, a Master’s in Curriculum Leadership,” said Dr. Knowles. “In the 14 months that I have been TWC’s president, I have seen the college grow to be a true leader in higher education. This past year was one for the record books. It was a fantastic year for academics and athletics.”

With TWC’s past year and 2012 Homecoming such a success, anticipation and preparation for next year’s Homecoming celebration is already underway.

“I’m looking forward to what TWC will accomplish in the upcoming year and am already excited about planning for Homecoming 2013,” said Edwards.

“What we have here on this college campus is truly special and I’m proud to be a part of the Tennessee Wesleyan family as a staff member and an alumna. Homecoming is one weekend a year but it’s the one weekend at TWC where past alumni can meet future alumni and celebrate the Tennessee Wesleyan experience together.”