WKU English Department Hosts Alumni Homecoming Gathering
- Author: Bailey Cooke
- Author: Tuesday, November 12th, 2019
As a part of WKU’s 2019 Decades of Spirit Homecoming Week, the English Department hosted an Alumni Homecoming Gathering on Saturday, October 19 at the Preservation Tasting Room and Bottle Shop, which is co-owned by English alumnus, Blake Layne. Nearly sixty alumni and current and retired faculty attended the event. The front doors of Preservation were propped open to let in the warm fall air and light; drinks were served as people conversed and mingled.
Dr. Rob Hale, Head of English at WKU, said, “Our alums have forged very successful lives and careers, and it was wonderful hearing their stories. We got some great ideas for how our alums can help our current students, whether through job leads, internship experiences, or providing general advice.”
Dr. Joe Survant, a retired English faculty member, also attended and enjoyed the event. “The venue, food, wine and company were a great start for what I hope will become an English Department Homecoming tradition. It’s a great way for both students and faculty to keep in touch in a relaxed setting” said Survant.
Dr. Kelly Reames, a current English professor who primarily teaches American Literature, thought the gathering was a great idea for the department. Reames said, “It was a lovely, relaxed event, and a great chance to catch up with former students, something we rarely get to do in person after students graduate. I hope it becomes a regular event, and I suspect even more alumni will attend once it does.”
Fallon Willoughby, a 2013 English graduate who works as an instructor at SKYCTC and an adjunct professor at WKU, said she was initially worried she wouldn’t know any fellow students and would be too shy to approach new alumni and faculty, but thanks to Dr. Alison Langdon, she felt right at home. “Truly, the main fun for me was connecting in person with faculty. I am friends with several on Facebook, but speaking together face to face again was such a joy. It brought back memories of a happy time” said Willoughby. She thinks the Alumni Homecoming Gathering should continue to be an annual event so current connections among the English community can be kept strong, in addition to creating new ones with new alumni and faculty/staff.
Be sure to check out and follow the WKU English Department’s Facebook and Instagram pages for updates about departmental events and for further details about next year’s Alumni Homecoming Gathering. For information about alumni and to read alumni profiles, view the Alumni page on the WKU English Department’s website.