Curry folks like to socialize—that is no secret.
We have picnics to kick off the year in the fall and end the year in the spring. We find a whole variety of reasons to have potluck lunches throughout the academic year. We don’t require “Likes to socialize” on our admissions or employment applications, but it is a common characteristic across the Curry community.
For me, our parties aren’t just about the food (which is usually fabulous. There are a surprising amount of foodies here!). The times our students, faculty, and staff gather outside of our classrooms, clinics, and offices help build meaningful connections within the Curry community.
One party, in particular, is my favorite reflection of the spirit of the Curry faculty and staff. Each year we have an annual holiday party that typically takes place after most of our students have finished up their fall semester.
Last year, a colleague came up with an idea that we should have a gingerbread house competition during the holiday party. I must confess that I wasn’t impressed with the idea.
Yes. It’s true. I doubted both the holiday spirit and competitive nature of my fellow Curryians.
Thankfully, I was outvoted and we went forward with the idea and…well, let’s just say I was unequivocally proven wrong.
This year, 11 teams of all sorts of combinations of faculty and staff designed, schemed, and dreamed up this year’s houses. Each team was given a simple gingerbread kit with the only rule that they must use the kit in the creation of their house.
(One team even requested their kit before Thanksgiving. Turns out, we take this competition very seriously.)
This year, the teams did not disappoint. Check out the pics here.
There are many times we attempt to articulate what makes the Curry community so special—as we recruit our students, new faculty and staff or reflect on our community during events such as retirements and Final Exercises.
It is truly an extraordinary place and a remarkable community of which to be a part. Our students, scholars, researchers, faculty, and staff very much understand that the learning that takes place here, the solutions created to combat our society’s most significant problems, and the new ideas discovered in our labs and clinics don’t happen in isolation of this greater thing called life.
That life is honored in so many ways, like when our faculty members share their very personal life lessons and when we rally around colleagues and students during major life events, like the birth of new babies or the passing of family members.
It is also honored in these times when we gather and play. And though this party happens while the students are away, it is a reminder of the kind of community that welcomes our students in, pouring into their scholarship and their lives.