Faculty and Staff - October 8, 2021

Dear Colleagues:

Last month, I shared with you that the plans were to host three Homecoming and Reunion Weekends from which alumni could choose to celebrate on campus or virtually. Our students were to additionally celebrate the week leading up to the last of the three weekends. Our Homecoming Steering Committee has shared with me a change of plans that will allow Winthrop to now host one Homecoming and Reunion celebration for the entire campus, Nov. 12-13. This is great news!

The committee and I agreed that we will be able to safely accommodate more alumni on campus than initially thought, based on interest and current registrations. We will still have the Alumni Awards Dinner, which is a separate event, on this Saturday night, and one reunion class will still gather on campus this weekend, but the other classes are excited about celebrating on Nov. 12-13.

The Campus Beautification Initiative (CBI) service projects, with which some of you may have anticipated helping, will be consolidated into one event at Bancroft Hall at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 13. See the CBI website for more information.

Another development of note that impacts the weekend is the scheduling of a men’s Homecoming basketball game on Saturday against Mercer University in the Coliseum. Game time will be 2 p.m., and tickets will go on sale in November. Athletics is still working on the COVID-related protocols for basketball, and information will be shared on the Homecoming and Athletics websites when available.

The game development leads to anticipated questions about pre-game festivities, so I want to be clear: We will not have a tailgating experience like you may remember from past years. We are simply not able to accommodate the crowd that I have heard typically gathers for this celebratory event.  Consideration of options for approved activities in the parking lots are being reviewed by the Homecoming Steering Committee, but anything similar to the most recent tailgating event would present insurmountable staffing, safety and social distancing challenges that the university cannot undertake in the current pandemic.

I certainly don’t want to dampen the enthusiasm for what will surely be a fantastic Homecoming and Reunion weekend, but I must be clear about expectations. Let’s look with anticipation toward a great weekend of connecting with others and enjoying our beautiful campus, but we must continue to keep our safety and security guardrails in place to successfully finish our in-person semester.

Go Eagles!


George W. Hynd
Interim President