James Jones Column: Chilly weekend did not ruin Stillman College homecoming

Published 8:09 am Sunday, February 18, 2024

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Homecoming weekend at Stillman College felt like two separate events under this “Bi-polar weather.’

When alumni arrived in town the morning of Feb. 16,  they were greeted by overcast skies and 70 degree temperature. I never make it to the Friday events, where many alumni meet and greet because of work. 

By the time I arrived Friday evening, it was time for the annual Step show. To me, the battle for the college’s top fraternity and sorority has always been a student thing.

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The area received rain overnight and brought along a cold freeze as temperatures fell below freezing for Feb.17. We woke up to an ice cold morning and it changed our preparation. Many have sinus conditions, some severe.

A lot of us bravely fought through the chilly, windy conditions to reunite. Saturday is the day where I joyfully greet old classmates, usually a bright sun and warmer climate. We often took photos and spread them across Social Media. 

I withstood the cold weather for several hours and enjoyed chatting with family and friends.  We still hugged in the bitter cold and held meaningful conversations.

I gave away some of my published works, especially to those who supported and encouraged the unknown student. 

I arrived at Stillman College in 1988 as a Super Senior, which all of us true freshmen were. Whether it was surviving Math 131, Biology 232 or a dance, we all had to learn our way up the ladder. Going from high school senior to college freshman was different as night and day.

Every time I attend a reunion, I am always reminded of the upperclassmen who served as great role models who helped me survive that first year, saying better days were ahead. I thank them for their encouragement.

The Class of 1992 began with 105 seniors. One-third of us survived and eventually graduated. I also had a huge advantage: living at home with my grandmother. Feb. 17 was her 107th birthday.


Stillman College’s 2024 homecoming may have felt like two different events, but I made the most of it.