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‘Looking Back and Leading Forward’

October 12, 2011

10/13/11  The Culver Girls Academy’s 40th anniversary celebration this weekend (Oct. 14-16) will be a time for the Academies and its alumni – women and men – and students to be “Looking Back and Leading Forward.”

“This is a celebration of 40 years together as one Culver,” Dean of Girls Laura Weaser said. “It is the two separate programs that make us so very special . . . and why each is so successful.

“The weekend will be a wonderful opportunity for alumnae to connect by celebrating with our girls, networking among themselves, and cultivating relationships that will continue to grow,” said Weaser, who began with CGA as a dorm counselor in 1983 and became Dean of Students in 1996. In 2002, she was named Dean of Girls.

The weekend’s program has been designed around two major themes that emerged through the numerous alumnae surveys – mentoring current students and networking with one another, as well as with students, Weaser said.

More than 100 alumnae representing four decades are expected for the weekend celebration, which will begin at 1:15 p.m. Friday with a keynote address by Dr. Sally Hodder ’72 at an all-school assembly in Eppley Auditorium. Hodder is a member of the first class of 16 girls to graduate from Culver Academy for Girls. Culver’s first woman Graduate of the Year (1996), Hodder is a professor of Medicine, Director of HIV Programs, and Vice Chair of the Department of Medicine at the Medical School of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.

The balance of Friday’s formal session will involve discussions of the lifelong CGA experience with student panelists representing the contemporary school and alumnae panelists relating their post-Culver journey. Afternoon activities will include dorm open houses and participatory activities (such as horseback riding, tennis, golf and campus tours) before segueing to alumnae receptions by decades at two locations and a dinner hosted by the board of The Culver Legion, the alumni body, with remarks by Head of Schools John Buxton.

Saturday’s session will feature the discussion of the preparation, possibilities, and responsibilities of The Culver Network with 1983 CGA graduate Hildy Teegen, Ph.D., as the keynote speaker. Teegen is the Dean of the Moore School Business at the University of South Carolina. She also is the founding director of the Center for International Business Education and Research at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

Her remarks will be followed by a series of panels involving alumnae discussing CGA networking in business, education, medicine, science, and non-traditional careers, among others. At 2 p.m., Buxton will speak on “The Power of Coordinate Schools” in Eppley Auditorium. That evening, a reception and dinner will honor current and retired faculty members.

“‘Looking Back and Leading Forward’ is an appropriate theme for CGA alumnae and current students to rally around this weekend as Culver pauses to celebrate the founding of the girls school,” said Alan Loehr, director of Alumni Relations. “While many schools added a co-educational element to their programs at this time in our nation’s history, we are particularly proud that CGA’s model for teaching leadership has not only stood the test of the time, it has forged a place among the most innovative and comprehensive of any secondary school in the country.”

The celebration will conclude with the Garrison Parade at 12:15 p.m. Sunday, in which the CGA Flag Detail will participate to honor the 40th anniversary.

In conjunction with the 40th anniversary, a special exhibit is on display at the Academies Museum & Gift Shop in downtown Culver honoring Culver Girls Academy. 

About Culver Academies

Culver’s mission is to educate its students for leadership and responsible citizenship by developing and nurturing the whole individual through integrated programs that emphasize the cultivation of character.

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