The Meredith College Student Ambassadors hosted the Eighth Annual Grandparents’ Luncheon on Friday, April 8, 2016, at The Royal Banquet and Conference Center. Attending were 250 guests from ten states.
The event gives students the opportunity to share their love of Meredith College with their grandparents and is a special time for them to reconnect.
Meredith Hovis,’16, a student ambassador, was the master of ceremonies. Student Ambassadors are part of an undergraduate student program involved in initiating, enhancing, and expanding student relationships with all constituencies of Meredith College.
Speakers included President Jo Allen, ’80, Vice President for College Programs Jean Jackson, ’75, and Audrey McQueen Jackson, ’85, a member of the Parents Council.
“The luncheon was first planned as a way for our grandparents to take part in their granddaughter’s college experience,” says Jean Gambrill, associate director of The Meredith Fund. “Now, eight years later, it’s incredibly touching to see how the grandparents look forward to the luncheon as their own Meredith tradition.”
This year’s luncheon gave grandparents the opportunity to learn about the various traditions that help create the special bonds between the students and the College. Jean Jackson, an alumna and a member of the faculty since 1983, spoke about traditions that included tunnel painting, Cornhuskin’ Ring Week, Crook Hunt, Class Day, Stunt, and Alice in Wonderland.
“I have given you a rapid run through of vehicles used for discovery by Meredith students,” said Jackson. “These traditions each provide a look at Meredith College’s past, but chart the future for our students.”
Audrey McQueen Jackson was first introduced to Meredith as a sophomore in high school by her mother, Gwendolyn. Both of her daughters, Rhaegan and Maya, are currently at Meredith and all three were in attendance at the luncheon where she spoke about her experiences as a student, transitioning to the role of a Meredith parent, and getting to hear about traditions through her daughters.
“I really wasn’t away from home while at Meredith. Meredith was home,” said McQueen Jackson. “Now I am not only an alumna, but on Parents Council as a way to give the same opportunities I had to current students.”
The event was concluded with student ambassador Caroline Carter, ’18, a member of the Meredith Chorale and a Capella ensemble Encore, singing the alma mater.
Pictured above: Meredith student Jessica Lancaster, ’17, with her grandparents Jim and Pat Lancaster at the Grandparents’ Luncheon. They have attended the event for the past three years.