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Expanded social media enhances alumni experience

During the Commencement festivities taking place on campus from May 7 through May 12, more than 20 alumni-related events, including a new international student dessert reception, reunite visiting alumni from across the globe. "Commencement unites alumni with students and families to appreciate and participate wholly in the Emory experience," says Carol So '10C, assistant director of alumni and student programs at the Emory Alumni Association.

For future Emory Residence Hall Director and Fellow Maija-Liisa Ehlinger '14C, Commencement is steeped in both tradition and great memories. "I cannot imagine a more transformative experience than the one I had here at Emory. I am leaving not only with a great degree and an appreciation for interdisciplinary learning, but also with the confidence needed to succeed no matter what the future holds," she says. Beginning this summer, Ehlinger will serve as a fellow in the Office of Health Promotion. "I'm excited about spending another year on the campus I love in order to help create a healthier student body."

Fellow senior Rasheika Martin '14C says, "My time at Emory has been characterized by growth. I have grown as a student, a professional, a thinker and a woman.

"In August 2010, I started college having a set plan as to how my life would unfold. I can honestly say that not a single, concrete goal on my original list has come to fruition, and gladly so. I adjusted my initial life plans into new aspirations that I have since realized."

Corpus Cordis Aureum

Ehlinger and Martin will march on the Quad alongside Emory's oldest alumni. "Each year, Emory's treasured alumni don golden robes to walk alongside their student counterparts during the Commencement ceremony," says Gloria Grevas, Emory Alumni Association director of student and alumni programs. "This time-honored tradition pays homage to the generations who have built our Emory legacy." This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Corpus Cordis Aureum (CCA), or golden corps of the heart, which was created to honor Emory alumni who have graduated 50 years ago or more.

During the CCA induction ceremony on Sunday, May 11, the Judson C. "Jake" Ward Golden Heart Award will be given to J. Joseph Edwards '54Ox, '56B, '58B and Patricia Carter Edwards '61C.  Established in 2010, the Golden Heart Award seeks to recognize Emory alumni who demonstrate the same values of service, generosity of spirit and loyalty to the university embodied by Dean of Alumni Judson "Jake" Ward '33C, '36G.

This year, the association is expanding its live coverage of Commencement on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. "If you're looking for a way to stay connected during Commencement Weekend, become part of the Emory Alumni Association's #emoryTBT project by sharing your Commencement throwback photos. Use the hashtag on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, then head to our social hub to check out our board to see what your friends are sharing at," suggests Tania Dowdy '08Ox, '10C,  the association's social media specialist. "Be sure your social profiles are public to be included in the hub."

"Emory is home to me," Ehlinger says. "I am looking forward to the transition from Emory student to Emory alum. I know that Commencement Weekend is going to be incredibly busy, but I hope I remember to keep it in perspective and enjoy the moments."  

See the full schedule of Commencement Weekend activities.

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