Courtesy of Cornell University

Alumni reconnect with each other while overlooking Libe Slope during Reunion 2019.

March 28, 2020

Annual Cornell Alumni Reunion to Go ‘Virtual’

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Although Cornell’s commencement has been indefinitely postponed, another longtime celebration of graduates will continue — albeit in a new, socially distanced form.

According to the University’s coronavirus update page, the annual alumni Reunion Weekend “will become a virtual celebration for all alumni,” to be held on the weekend of June 5.

While exact details of the online format have yet to be released, the website said that “planning for this virtual event has already started,” and expressed optimism that Homecoming Weekend, another event popular with alumni, will go on in the fall.

Cornell’s attempt to translate the large-scale gathering into an online equivalent comes as plans for many Ivy League alumni events have been upended. Harvard University, for instance, opted to cancel its spring reunion outright, while Dartmouth has not announced plans.

Reunion Weekend has long been a popular draw for alumni, holding performances from reunited a capella groups, parades led by the Big Red Marching Band and class-specific events.

Last year’s event — which saw the return of a record 6,000 former students — featured a virtual Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg ’54, who sent a video message to fellow classmates in celebration of their 65th reunion.

“How I wish I could be with you at Cornell at this intoxicatingly beautiful time of year to enjoy the festivities,” Ginsburg told attendees — a feeling that, now, is likely to be shared by thousands of other Cornellians.