Perspective from an Alumni Board Member

Fall 2023 AABOG Update: It’s Great to Be Back!

It’s said that absence makes the heart grow fonder. This was my feeling towards Hendrix during “COVID times” as I was physically closer to the college than I had been in over a decade having relocated to Little Rock from Boston at the end of 2019 but was not engaged with it in any formal capacity. My 10-year-long volunteer commitment as Class Agent – essentially an alumni fundraiser – ended in early 2020 with the close of the program, and we are all well-aware of the effects that the virus had on our social engagements. A feeling of disconnect began creeping into that space where I hold our alma mater, and I decided to prioritize building and rebuilding relationships with HDX.

In Spring of 2023, I attended two alumni birthday luncheons – one for mine in April and another for my dear friend, Maradyth McKenzie (nee Hopper) in March. It was such a great experience to be back on campus after so long, in the new caff with fellow alumni and dining hall staff some of whom were feeding us during my student days. Sadly, no Disco tray! Then later in June, I met Hendrix’s new president, Dr. Karen Petersen, for her welcome reception at the beautiful Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts in downtown Little Rock; this event was a huge success and drew many alumni, faculty, staff, and friends of the college.

During these visits, I reconnected with Alumni Office staff whom I have know since senior year. It proved to be beneficial as soon after I was asked to join our college’s Alumni Association Board of Governors (AABoG). For those that aren’t aware, this is a four-year commitment (follows the academic calendar) for alums who want to offer time and service with event help, fundraising efforts, alumni and prospective student engagement, and other tasks that support the life and longevity of the college. I accepted with pride and hit the ground running in August.

To date, I and other alumni board members have participated in:

  • New Student Move-In Day in August (on campus)
  • Orientation for new AABoG members
  • Fall Meeting of the AABoG (on campus)
  • AABoG’s Career Services Subcommittee meeting
  • Fall Family Weekend in September (on campus)
  • Remembrance Reception for Dr. Chris Spatz (on campus, Dawkins Welcome Center)

As you can see, I’ve gone from 0 to 100 in a matter of months – and it truly has been worth it! It’s cliché to say, but this IS AN EXCITING TIME for Hendrix College. With a new administration, our dedicated faculty & staff, vibrant & diverse student body, and an alumni board committed to the success of the college, I have hope that this place we all love so dearly has a very bright future. Hendrix supported so many of us during our very formative college years, and I am glad to be giving back in this very connected, purposeful, and meaningful way.

Rip Weaver '06
2023-2027 Alumni Association Board of Governors

Rip Weaver and Maradyth Hopper McKenzie Resized
Rip Weaver '06 & Maradyth Hopper McKenzie '06 volunteer during Family Weekend 2023