A strong sense of community

At Wheaton, we are committed to building community. One need only to attend an event on campus to witness the camaraderie, friendships and joy of being together—even among those who may not know each other very well.

I saw it this spring at the International Bazaar, in which students share their culture through food, dance, fashion and posters. I saw it during the annual Head of the Peacock Regatta, where, with enough ingenuity by a crew of students working together, a handmade cardboard and duct tape boat can, indeed, float on water.

Students show off fashions from all over the world at the International Bazaar. (Sandy Coleman photo)
Creative crews work together to make boats for Head of the Peacock Regatta. (Sandy Coleman photo)

You will see it in this issue of the magazine, which is full of stories that illustrate the connections students make while on campus and the ties they maintain long after they leave. Those ties bring them back as alums and inspire them to reach out to each other in meaningful ways.

In Connecticut, for example, two alums from different generations ran into each other, bonded over common causes and worked together to get an affordable housing project off the ground. On campus in March, members of the Gentlemen Callers a cappella group returned to Wheaton for a weekend of events and a concert to celebrate their close ties. During the fall, community was center stage during the rehearsal for the musical “Rent,” which featured a cast and production crew of 33 students.

One of the most powerful examples of community I’ve ever seen can be found in the connection that Zelda Zhao ’18 and Emily Conklin ’13 have made. Their paths had never crossed until recently but now they are closer than two people can be. That’s because one saved the other’s life—with a little help from Wheaton’s community responding to a request and spreading the word about what was needed. Read their personal essays on pages 38 and 39.


(Sandy Coleman photo)