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May 7 and 8, 2018
The ASU Alumni Association welcomes the Class of 1968 back on campus to celebrate Golden Reunion. Celebrations take place during Spring Commencement on May 7 and 8, 2018.
The Class of 1967 celebrated their Golden Reunion on May 8 and 9, 2017. At this special two-day event, classmates from the university's 50-year reunion class and guests reconnected with each other and ASU, as well as enjoyed a special opportunity to join in the procession during the University's Spring Commencement.
This reunion celebration was filled with special programs including tours of ASU facilities, lectures, guest speakers and University Commencement. A major highlight was the Golden Circle Induction Ceremony, a candlelight ceremony in which the graduates of the class of 1967 were inducted into the Golden Circle, an honorary group comprised of all classes who have celebrated their 50th reunion.
The Graduate Tempe is a proud partner of Golden Reunion – Class of 1968. The hotel is offering a discount room rate of $99.00 plus tax per night of the reunion (check-in: Friday May 4, 2018, check-out Wednesday May 9, 2018). The property is located across the street from Arizona State University campus and within minutes of Mill Avenue. The hotel offers free Wi-Fi, free airport shuttle and free shuttle to and from ASU and/or within a 3-mile radius, and an outdoor heated swimming pool. Overnight parking is complimentary. To book your reservation online and secure the discount rate, click here or call please call (480) 967-9431 and request the ASU Alumni 2018 Golden Reunion event rate. All reservations must be made by May 1, 2018.
As members of the ASU Class of 1967 return to the university for their Golden Reunion, the Alumni Association tapped several members of the class to share their reflections about their time at ASU.
[collapse collapsed title="Doris Welsh Wojtulewicz"]
ASU Prepared Me Well For A Teaching Career
It’s hard to grow up in Tempe without ASU becoming part of your family’s traditions. My mother suspended her education during World War II and worked as the dean’s secretary in the College of Education when I was growing up. She later went back to finish her degree and graduated from ASU the same day I did.
I worked and studied all the time when I was in college, so my suitemates plotted to drag me down to work on a display for our hall for Homecoming, I didn’t want to do it, but they told me I needed to get out more. My dorm and my husband’s dorm were paired to work on the display together, so that’s how I got to know my husband, Gregory. On the night before Homecoming everybody walked around from display to display, and we had our first date. We have celebrated our first date at Homecoming every year since then; on our 50th anniversary of our date, our kids had T-shirts made for the entire family. As you can imagine, football and Homecoming are really a big part of our life!
The time I spent on campus prepared me well for my 30-year career as a teacher of home economics. I couldn’t have gotten a better education. Sue Cummings was my favorite professor; she encouraged me to do things I never thought I could. I was placed in positions with at-risk students, and my professors helped me develop an appreciation for the fact that kids always want the same things, no matter where you teach: your attention, and the chance to learn. That knowledge served me well.
We’ve become a family of teachers, thanks to ASU. Our daughter attended ASU and got her bachelor’s degree in journalism and English, her master’s degree in secondary education, and her doctoral degree in language and literacy. She is now a clinical professor at the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College. Because of this we’ve come full circle - my daughter is now teaching in the same building where her grandmother was once the secretary.
I’m most looking forward to sharing my Golden Reunion experience with my husband. We have so many memories here. He proposed to me in front of Palo Verde East dorm on campus! We spent hours walking the ASU campus when we were young. Being back on campus with him and reliving those memories is going to be fun. I’m really excited about that.
[collapse collapsed title="Pete Gomez"]
I’ll Forever Treasure My Sun Devil Experiences
When I went to ASU, everyone called me “Pepe.” I came from a farmer’s family in Peru. I got a scholarship to attend Arizona State, which was a miracle that changed my life. While I was at the university, I belonged to the Foreign Students Club, which had members from all over the world. I also played soccer for ASU, and worked in the student cafeteria too.
I met my wife, Valerie Roberts Gomez, while I was an undergraduate. She finished her master’s degree in nursing at ASU in 1994, and she continues to work as a nurse practitioner. My daughter Jackie graduated from ASU with her bachelor’s degree in 1991 and her master’s degree in 1995. Both of her degrees are in agribusiness.
After I graduated in 1967, I worked as an agronomist in Yuma. I provided pest control services and formed my own consulting company to help numerous farmers in the area. I enjoyed owning my own company and I had a wonderful career.
I’ve had a good time helping to plan the Golden Reunion with my friends Jemil Gunyuz and Eldon Smith, who were also in the Foreign Students Club when we were at ASU together. The experiences I had with other foreign students is precious to me. I had the opportunity to meet people from all over the world, and I will forever treasure it.
At the Golden Reunion, I am hoping to see some of the friends from my graduating class whom I haven’t been connected with in many years. It’s another memory I’m going to treasure, and I’m excited about it.
[collapse collapsed title="Robert McConnell"]
I Wanted Everyone To Know About ASU
I chose to attend ASU because I was bred to come here. My mother, aunt and uncle were all Sun Devils. The other half of the family attended the U of A, and although I was originally from California, we all came out each year for the Territorial Cup game, and I got caught up with the rivalry early on.
I played basketball my freshman year under Coach Ned Wulk. It was a fabulous experience being on the court with some of the best players in ASU history, including Art Becker, Dennis Dairman and Joe Caldwell, and establishing lifelong friendships. Once I left the basketball program I gravitated toward student government, first in the residence hall, and then with ASASU, eventually being elected student body president.
After I was elected student body president, I read an article about Arizona’s National Merit Scholars, and wondered why so many more were choosing the U of A instead of ASU. My thought was that we could create a student honorary with outstanding students from all of the colleges, so we could match high school students with ASU students with the same academic interests and recruit them for ASU. I drafted a charter for a student organization and spoke with Don Dotts, who was executive director of the ASU Alumni Association at the time.
Don went along with the idea, and I appointed my good friend (and now wife) Nadia Komarnyckyj (McConnell) as the first president. She took over the organization from there, including selecting the name Devils’ Advocates. I secured for the Advocates 10 prime tickets for every event in Grady Gammage so they could entertain students and parents, and by the end of the year, ASU had more incoming National Merit Scholars than the U of A.
I actually met my wife, Nadia, after only a couple of months on campus. I went out one night with my roommate and we ran into her, and my roommate knew her. When I started the Inter-Hall Council, I was put on her committee. Eventually, we became good friends, and all these years later, we still are.
I knew I wanted to be involved in public affairs when I was an undergraduate, and my involvement in student government, law school and my internship with U.S. Sen. Paul Fannin and working as Legislative Assistant to U.S. Rep. John J. Rhodes Jr. definitely prepared me for that. My favorite professors were in my law school program, including John Morris, who was one of the law school’s founding faculty, as well as Dean Willard Pedrick, Richard Effland, Jonathan Rose and Bill Canby. They were good professors and wonderful people.
Since graduating from ASU College of Law’s inaugural class in 1970, I’ve worked as an attorney in private practice and as part of a law firm. I also was appointed Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs during the Reagan Administration, and served as the head of CBS’s Washington, D.C., corporate office.
I’m really looking forward to seeing people who I haven’t seen in years, as well as taking part in various reunion activities and participating in Spring Commencement. More than anything else, I am looking forward to seeing my friends and classmates from the Class of 1967.
[collapse collapsed title="Bill Close Jr"]
Building on His Education at ASU
When I was a student at ASU, I pledged the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity, and belonged to the student chapter of the American Institute of Architects. I was also a member of the Rio Salado design class that created a plan for the dry riverbed of the Salt River, which resulted eventually in what is now known as Tempe Town Lake. When I was on campus, though, a lot of my time was taken up by ASU football. I worked as a ticket taker for ASU football, and I was also a spotter for my father, Bill Close Sr., when he announced Sun Devil football games. I enjoyed ASU’s baseball teams when I was student, too, skipping class to watch them become national champions!
I met my future wife at ASU, and she helped me finish my thesis project. One of our nieces graduated from ASU as well.
I’ve come to appreciate the well-rounded education that ASU provided for us, one that’s been very applicable to my architectural practice. As a registered architect, one of my first projects was the design of Packard Stadium, which served ASU’s baseball teams for nearly 40 years. I’ve worked for various architectural firms, as well as for the University of California-San Diego and the Salt River Project here in the Valley of the Sun.
At the upcoming Golden Reunion, I’m most looking forward to sharing my memories from my time at ASU, and hearing what my classmates have done with their lives.
[collapse collapsed title="Jeri Meikle Nowakowski"]
I Couldn’t Be Prouder of ASU
I was busy when I was at Arizona State University as a student. I was a member of Delta Gamma sorority, the Spurs, Natani, and the Little Sisters of Minerva. I worked as a secretary for the head of secondary education in the College of Education, in spite of the state of my shorthand!
I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English in 1967 and a master’s degree in English in 1973. My undergraduate education was a rich, exciting and fun experience. Graduate studies were challenging, rewarding, and gave me lifelong skills in inquiry and analysis, and nurtured my love of literature.
After I graduated in 1967, I taught high school English at McClintock High School in Tempe while I was pursuing my master’s. I went on to earn a doctorate (Ed.D.) in research and evaluation from Western Michigan University. After that, I have spent several decades working in and for higher education. I was a postdoctoral fellow and an associate professor at Northern Illinois University, executive director of the North Central Educational Lab; provost and president at the American College of Education; executive vice president of Voyager Expanded Learning; and I also worked as an educational consultant.
I’m looking forward to seeing old friends at Golden Reunion, hearing the address at Spring Commencement, as well as learning more about ASU’s pathway to becoming a Tier I research university with an international reach. I couldn’t be prouder of my alma mater’s growth or its mission.