Hinman to celebrate 50 years of fun, family at Homecoming

Who needs to be taught how to hug?

When Henry Aery ’15 arrived at Hinman College, he considered himself more of “a handshake kind of person.” That changed when the RA staff taught him to hug.

“In time, my friends showed me how the vulnerability of a hug can foster deeper connections,” Aery says. “Now, I introduce myself by saying, ‘Hi, I’m Henry. I’m a hugger.’ And I quickly turn strangers into friends.”

There will be plenty of hugs when Hinmanites return to campus for the community’s 50th anniversary celebration, planned for Homecoming weekend, Friday–Sunday, Oct. 6–8. Aery is working with Hinman Collegiate Professor Alvin Vos and other alumni to coordinate the weekend’s activities, which will include a Saturday night banquet, Dorm Wars and an open house.

Andre Mathis ’09, MPA 12, also on the reunion planning committee, says running for hall president during freshman year was one of his first lessons in leadership. As an alumnus, he has remained connected to the University, shaping events and programs for the Alumni Association’s Greater Binghamton Chapter.

“Though I didn’t win the election, I used that experience as my foundation to be involved, attending our hall meetings and thinking about how I, as a student, could be engaged with the University as a whole.”

Campus has new faces and new spaces, but the Hinman spirit has endured and is something with which everyone can identify.

“When alumni come back, and they look at Hinman from the Lecture Hall or Lot M, there will be this sense of nostalgia, and they’ll say, ‘That’s a place I know,’” Mathis says.

“It feels good to know that Hinman continues to give hundreds of students a year what Hinman gave me when I was a student,” Aery says. “The Hinman spirit is boundless. It’s going to be a really special night with Hinmanites from across the decades. I think we’ll all be surprised to see how similar our experiences were despite how different they looked.”

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