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SXU Celebrates Homecoming Week


Saint Xavier University (SXU) recently celebrated Homecoming Week during the first full week of October. Though activities were a little different this year due to constraints from the COVID-19 pandemic, faculty, staff, students and the community came together to celebrate their Cougar pride in a variety of ways, demonstrating that regardless of the circumstances, traditions remain grounded in spirit and we are SXU.

Homecoming Week kicked off Tuesday with virtual "Meet the Dean" presentations. Alumni were invited to meet the deans of the University's three schools: School of Nursing and Health Sciences (SONHS), Graham School of Management and College of Arts and Sciences. Alumna Janice Phillips '85, Ph.D., R.N., joined SONHS to present "Flight 2020: A Continuous Journey to Excellence in Nursing." Together, nursing alumna joined in the meaningful discussion about nursing leadership while celebrating SXU's 85 years of nursing excellence.

On Wednesday, the community joined the Homecoming from Home keynote speaker event featuring Julius Bailey, Ph.D., associate professor of philosophy, pre-law advisor, African and Diaspora Studies director and director of Justice, Law and Public Policy at Wittenberg University. The virtual presentation was titled "A Critical Faith for A Critical Time: Race, Class and Being a Life-Long Citizen of Integrity." Through critical conversation, Dr. Bailey inspired the community with passion and purpose, reminding attendees that even in moments of despair, faith can help people to seek discourse and pedagogy to create a moral call for love and justice.

Though the annual Golf Classic is traditionally held in August, this year, it was held on Thursday of Homecoming Week. Cougars were treated to beautiful fall weather all of Homecoming Week, and it was the perfect day for alumni, donors and vendors to come out and support SXU by raising funds for student scholarships. Attendees enjoyed a shotgun start, lunch, a cocktail reception, and a ready-to-grill steak dinner to take home.

Friday, students participated in the Cougar Cruise, a car decorating competition and parade. Students competed as individuals and in groups for a cash prize or Campus Bookstore merchandise awarded from the Student Activities Board (SAB). Participants, keeping SXU Cougar spirit in mind, worked to decorate their vehicles, which were considered by a panel of judges during the fun and lively parade.

"Homecoming Week was a great success for the SAB. Although we had to transition to a more socially-distanced and virtual week, we were still able to showcase Cougar pride across campus, closing off the week with our very first Cougar Cruise parade!" said Katherine Hutto, a hospitality management and marketing major and executive vice president of programming for SAB. 

Homecoming Week ended Saturday with the kickoff to SXU's annual Cougar 5K Run/Walk, which celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2020. Because of COVID-19 restrictions, the event was held virtually this year, and runners and walkers could run any time between Saturday October 10, and Tuesday, October 20. This year, nearly 300 alumni, faculty, staff, students and community members have registered and represent seven different states. For the first time ever, alumni who live in other parts of the United States were able to participate.

"The thoughtfulness of our community was on full display during Homecoming week in virtual celebrations and meaningful discussions that showcased the SXU spirit. I am grateful for the students, faculty, staff and alumni who came together to create a truly magical week in spite of the pandemic," said President Laurie M. Joyner, Ph.D.