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From Satellite Student to Siena Heights Saint

Why I come to the Adrian campus—and you should, too!

By Jerry Peterson ’01—Lansing Center

A large number of Siena Heights alumni (myself included) completed their studies without ever setting foot on the main campus in Adrian. This is the result of SHU’s success developing a nationally recognized online program as well as a network of remote learning centers where students can attend classes locally.

I can think of three great reasons to make the effort to go the main campus; and I have availed myself of all them. The first of these was to be part of the graduation ceremonies. I had never thought I would obtain a degree; so when I did, I wanted to note that accomplishment with a celebration and not just add another line on my resume.

Secondly, I wanted to feel the pride of attending a collegiate football Homecoming as an alumnus. Although the football program is relatively new, it has all the festivities including the makings of a fun and boisterous tailgate tradition. SHU has additional activities before and after the game to make a day of it.

My favorite reason to travel to the main campus is to attend the Alumni Theatre Dinner. This event is usually held in early spring and makes a bright spot to look forward to at the end of a Michigan winter. I am surrounded by others who support SHU. I meet people from various backgrounds including the dedicated people who work at SHU and call Adrian their home. The dinner is wonderful. And, since Siena Heights is known to have a first rate theater program, the play is always excellent. I have made this a yearly event for over a decade.

Of course, a day trip to get away from home is always a good idea. The drive to Adrian is off the interstate and can pass by lakes, fields and woods. Adrian has a true downtown area to walk, shop, and grab a bite. A stroll around the Siena Heights campus shows the blending of new and old architecture accented with shade trees and landscaped garden beds. But, ah, best of all for me is the theater!

Note: Jerry Peterson is retired from the auto industry. He now drives to Adrian several times a year as an active member of the Alumni Association Board of Directors.

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