Throwback: The new version of Carleton homecoming

What’s old is new again – at least during Throwback 2013.

Carleton will celebrate its friendships and connections with its alumni as the new version of homecoming gets underway on Sept. 16 and runs until Sept. 22.

The week kicks off with the launch of new exhibits at the Carleton University Art Gallery, a special Doctors Without Borders lecture event and then moves into the weekend with a series of special celebrations to mark milestone anniversaries of several faculties, including science and engineering.

One of the highlights of the weekend will be the Ravens football team taking on York at Ravens’ Field, as well as an alumni pub at Oliver’s and the President’s pancake breakfast.

The week promises to attract hundreds of Carleton grads, says Mark Savenkoff, director, Alumni and Donor Relations who is one of the key Throwback organizers.

“Throwback 2013 strives to engage the Carleton community and foster a life-long tradition of enduring pride and support for the university. It represents a chance for all members of our community — alumni, students, faculty, staff — to gather and celebrate what Carleton is, what it has accomplished and where it is going next,” says Savenkoff.

“If you have a strong affiliation to your faculty, there are lectures and events for you. If you are a sports enthusiast, there are alumni and varsity games for you. If you want family activities or formal seated dinners, we have those too. And above all, campus will be alive with the friendly and fun atmosphere our of Carleton community. “

The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences will be hosting one of its great grads – Nancy Broden who works at Twitter as the Design Lead on the revenue team. Broden will be in conversation with FASS Dean John Osborne discussing the value of the BA.

“I’ve had a long and winding journey from where I started to where I am. I feel like that is fairly familiar to most people who have a BA, in particular,” Broden told Carleton Now in a phone interview from her San Francisco office.

She says that it’s common for new grads to feel a sense of anxiety about how to use their degree to secure a job – she felt the same way when she graduated.

Her advice?

“A lot of isn’t new. A lot of it is your network and that takes time to build,” says Broden, who has an Art History degree. “The other part of it is persistence. It doesn’t sound like rocket science but you have to stick with it when things are hard. You can get pretty far by being persistent.”

When she graduated, she worked at art galleries. It was only when a web designer came into the gallery where she was working and showed her what he was doing, that she knew the tech world was where she wanted to be.

From there she took computer programming courses, which eventually led to design. It was her network that helped her land the job at Twitter.

“What you actually get out of the BA is that you’re learning how to learn more than anything, and critical thinking.”

Another famous alumnus, theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss, has been invited by the Faculty of Science to deliver the prestigious Discovery Lecture on Friday, Sept. 20.

“My degrees from Carleton (I did degrees in both math and physics) gave me a good preparation for graduate school and my later career. For example, at MIT I was able to skip all the introductory graduate courses, and with some individual preparation to build on what I had done as an undergraduate, I was able to complete all my general graduate exams at the end of the first term, and move on to research relatively quickly,” Krauss told Carleton Now.

“But more than this, the support and encouragement I received from the faculty at Carleton helped fuel both my excitement, and my confidence, which are vital parts of helping motivate one to pursue a research career in science I particularly appreciated the flexibility I was given as an undergraduate in designing my curriculum, and the collegial atmosphere among the faculty. The fact that I was able to bring the Canadian Undergraduate Physics Conference to Carleton in 1976 was also clearly a highlight.”

He says that he hopes to “convey the remarkable excitement associated with the revolutionary developments in physics and cosmology over the past 30 years, and to help excite some students about science, and to give the rest of the audience a perspective of the field, and also to help motivate people to realize that reality is so much more interesting than myth and superstition” during his lecture.

Although he often gets invitations to give lectures around the world, he cannot accept all of them. But Krauss says that he could not pass up the opportunity to speak at Carleton because, “it does give me a sense of pride to return to my alma mater.”

Meanwhile, Throwback organizer Savenkoff says the excitement is building for the event.

“At Carleton, Throwback is the return of homecoming – a chance to revisit university days and celebrate the future. It’s a new name to reinvigorate an old and proud tradition, and it evokes good memories and the celebration of all your university experience.”

For more information about Throwback, go to:


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