Homecoming is a tradition in every school where students, faculty, and parents welcome back alumni who have graduated. Homecoming festivities at PA often include a homecoming dance, various sporting events, pep rallies, theme days, no homework policies, and other fun activities. However, the central point of Homecoming is the football game where students, faculty, parents, and alumni can come together to support their home team.
The idea of homecoming began on college campuses during the 19th century when alumni would return to their Alma Maters for the first football game of the year. For the first homecoming, the NCAA credits the University of Missouri for calling home their alumni to watch a special game. To honor alumni, some schools will hold formal events or parties specifically for them.
Mrs. Mathisen, the Communications and Alumni Relations Associate for Providence Academy, said that, “We aren’t actually holding any formal alumni events. We held one a couple of years ago but the turnout was extremely low. We discovered that not many alumni are able to come back for Homecoming since they’re out of state and the ones that do make it back plan their own events within their social groups. We focus our efforts on the alumni Christmas party and a fun summer event.”
Even though there isn’t a formal event, a few alumni still come back for the football game to cheer on the Lions. When alumni come back, it shows school spirit. It adds to the enthusiasm of the crowds at sporting events and shows that PA is a community. Students, faculty, and parents love when alumni come back to visit. Alumni Ben Fredrickson ’15, attended the football game. He said that “my school was on a break and a few of my buddies were in town so I decided to come to the game.”
But, some alumni who are able to come to the football game decide not to. Mark Valde ’16 was in the area because he went to the Ryder Cup, a well-known golf tournament. He said that, “None of my friends were able to come back for the game and so I didn’t really want to go.” It seems that alumni mostly come back if their friends are too.
At other schools it may be easier to plan alumni events because the class sizes are a lot bigger than here at Providence. As numbers grow, there will be “more social and career events, including class reunions,” according to the Providence Academy website.

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