Alumna Column: Organizing Homecoming @ Home

Kelly Fennessy Meredith

Most years, early fall signals a time for many Gannon University alumni to return to campus to catch up with old friends, reminisce and check out changes to their old stomping grounds.

Like many events in 2020, this year’s Homecoming celebrations will look a little different, thanks to the creation of Homecoming @ Home and four days packed with opportunities to connect virtually.

Allison Mosier, associate director of Alumni Engagement, said the weekend will offer something for everyone, with a variety of live-streamed and virtual, interactive events.

“We’re excited for the opportunity to engage with alumni from all over the world this year,” Mosier said. “We have alumni across the nation and in over 64 countries that typically wouldn’t be able to make it back to Erie for the weekend. By bringing Homecoming to them, we’re able to share all the great things happening at GU and reconnect everyone with their Gannon family.”

Homecoming @ Home kicks off Thursday with the Distinguished Nursing Alumni Lecture Series by the Villa Maria School of Nursing, followed by the President’s Leadership Team Roundtable Discussion.

On Friday, the day will kick off with a welcome message from Gannon President Keith Taylor, Ph.D., and Victor E. Knight. Throughout the day, alumni can enjoy Donuts with the Deans, take a virtual campus tour and join Campus Ministry for an in-depth conversation on current events at Spirituality on Tap.

That evening, participants can catch a virtual presentation of “Twelfth Night” by the Schuster Theatre, take part in #GannonFamily Trivia, coordinated by the Student Government Association (SGA) and the Activities Programming Board (APB), and cap off the night with a live-streamed “Meet Me at the Plymouth” event.

Saturday’s slate includes Coffee with Professors, an Athletics Town Hall and several affinity reunions. That evening, take part in the continuing Social Justice series with a presentation on “Maintaining Your Mental Health While Advocating for Social Justice.” The day concludes with Late Knight Bingo, presented by SGA and APB.

The weekend wraps up Sunday with Nama-Stay at Home Yoga and the traditional Gannon Family & Friends Mass.

More details on all events, including links to register, are available at

Aaron Susmarski, a 2009 graduate and current president of the National Alumni Board, said he is looking forward to spending time with the Gannon family, even if it’s with technology this year.

“Many of us are living a very different work/life balance right now,” said Susmarski, who works as institutional director of human resources, Title IX coordinator, and EEO coordinator for Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine.

“Homecoming at Home allows all of our fellow Maroon and Gold Alumni to stay connected to all of the exciting events right from your own living room.”

Kelly (Fennessy) Meredith ‘08

Director, National Alumni Board