Bricks and the alums that love them

All photos Kaley Soud/Catalyst

On Feb. 12, the weekend of New College’s 50th Anniversary Celebration, I was in Palm Court helping with PCP preparations. Throughout the day I became fascinated  with the stream of alums that was perpetually running through Palm Court — a variety of people, varying in age from their thirties to their seventies were walking around, heads down, intently observing the bricks beneath them. They were looking for the bricks bearing the messages they had written, an incentive for donating a substantial chunk of change to the Alumni Foundation. In a way, these bricks were part of their legacy as Novocollegians.

When I realized what a valuable photo opportunity this was, I sucked up my first-year nervousness and approached these alums. What started as apprehension turned into exhilaration as my camera and their bricks connected me to people who wanted to share their own stories and hear my own. Every one of them was thrilled by the idea of getting a picture with their brick, and most were as enthralled by me as I was them.

It turned out to be the most valuable experience I had that entire weekend. The best part was feeling that I had earned a title of, as an alum from ’72 called me, “photojournalist.”

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