Every year Post members and alumni meet up for the Post Alumni Reunion. After last year’s last-minute cancelation and even more last-minute planning of a reunion that compiled all of the day's events and more into an hour-long Zoom call, this year’s first official, full-fledged virtual Post alumni reunion showed that even through Zoom that the Post family is strong.
If COVID-19 wasn’t a thing and life had some semblance of normalcy, both current and former Posties would cram into a small room on campus. Everyone would bring their Athens’ favorites for lunch, there’d be some mingling and then a day full of speakers and updates about the state of The Post. After all of that, everyone would reconvene at Athens Uncorked to catch up and network some. Bottom line, it’s a day that both current Posties and alumni look forward to for the entire year prior.
Nevertheless, in 2021 we reimagined that entire day — unfortunately minus our Athens Uncorked social — onto Zoom. I gave a recap of the past year at The Post. Next year’s editor-in-chief Abby Miller presented her innovative plans for the future. The financial state of The Post was heavily discussed. And lastly, we held a wonderful panel full of various alumni talking about how they’ve adapted and shifted their careers due to the pandemic.
No, there wasn’t any lunch filled with Athens favorites. Or an evening social where everyone can reminisce and get to know one another. But, if the virtual platform did anything, it connected a larger group — specifically of alumni — than what would usually happen with an in-person reunion.
Sitting on the Zoom call, one could not only find a Postie that graduated in 2020 but also a Postie that graduated in the 1960’s, ‘70s, ’80s, ’90s or ’00s. The reunion spanned six decades of The Post and connected fellow Posties that most likely otherwise wouldn’t have had the chance to meet.
Otherwise, current Posties were given insight into how professional journalists have been grappling with the pandemic in comparison to how student journalists have. Whether they were a photographer, national security reporter, health reporter, etc. all of the alumni had their own take on how the past year has gone, and the current students could definitely relate. No matter the story or the profession, it was apparent that both alumni and students could relate to the fact that this year has continued to throw curveballs and caused everyone to adapt at any moment.
Despite all this, I think everyone on the Zoom call yearned for the day where we can cram into a campus building, bond over Athens eateries and see each other face-to-face. I, for one, was saddened I wouldn’t get to present the year’s State of The Post. But I’m more so excited for the day that I can attend an in-person Post Alumni Reunion as an alumnae. I’ll walk into whatever room with my favorite Athens food, reminisce with old friends and learn about what’s new at my favorite student publication. But no matter if I’m a student or an alumni, it’ll be apparent that the Postie bond is still as strong as ever.