For the last few months, Janine Werkman has served as Director of Alumni & Community Relations in Field’s Development Office. She succeeds JoAnne Scribner in that role, who is now Field’s Director of Development. Janine brings her past fundraising and event planning experience to the school as we kick off our 40th Anniversary year. Janine played a big role in making this year’s Field Homecoming Celebration a great success. Here is Janine’s take on the past weekend’s fun and festivity as well as her new role at Field.
Saturday, October 13th was an exceptional day to visit The Field School. The sun was out, autumn was as beautiful as a season can get, and the campus was buzzing with life. Homecoming!
This year’s Homecoming was a great success. Not only did we have gorgeous weather, but we also had the spirit that the day is all about: community. Homecoming was a day for students to play sports, for alumni to visit, for parents and siblings to join in, for teachers to relax—and for all of us to celebrate the great sense of purpose and generosity in our community.
Since coming to The Field School this summer, I have been consistently knocked out by the way everyone pitches in. On Saturday in the first part of our day, we had the support of our Field parent and student community as we raised money (and awareness) for a local non-profit, Hope and A Home. This is a wonderful organization that works with low-income families and has partnered with Field in past to educate our students about the needs of the homeless in DC. Field’s cross country team helped to lead a wonderful group on a walk/run that made a difference for people beyond Field’s ten acres.
Maybe it was the draw of our fine sports teams or the great food, but we had an overwhelming number of current families and faculty attend our events throughout the day. From the moonbounce to the face-painting to the sales of brand-new Field spiritwear, the day was alive with color and enjoyment. In addition, Saturday’s Homecoming had the largest number of Field alumni in history—a great testament to the meaning of this school to its students. They stay connected long into the future.
As Field’s new Director of Alumni & Community Relations, I also had the great privilege to organize several Class Reunions over the weekend including the Classes of ’86, ’87, ’91, ’92, ’96, ’97, ’02 and ’07. We welcomed over 60 alumni back to Field, some of them making their first visit to the Foxhall campus since the school’s move ten years ago. Alums were thrilled to be back and were happy to see that, although the school has moved from the former Wyoming Avenue address, the students and our school’s mission remain intact. Many of these former students had not seen each other since graduation. Dale welcomed the crowd home again, and veteran teachers Chris Lorrain, Natalia Kormeluk and Will Layman gave tours of the campus. What a great night of reminiscing!
Over the next few months, I will continue to reconnect with alumni across the country by organizing class reunions, regional alumni gatherings in Chicago, LA, San Francisco, New York, Philadelphia and Boston, and by continuing to keep Field alumni informed and coming back to our campus. Also, I work with parents and the Field Parents Association to encourage the spirit of community and contribution that is obviously at the heart of this wonderful school.
Thank you to so many for welcoming me into this community. There’s no place like Field!