With a history that dates back to 1834, traditions are an important part of life at Green Mountain College. They deepen the College’s mission, showcase the community’s heritage, honor social and academic achievements, and provide for a lot of fun. Listed below are just some of the traditional events that unite the GMC community.
The Big Ones
Alumni & Family (and Friends!) Weekend
Typically held during the first weekend of October, Family & Friends Weekend is a three-day event that provides information and entertainment to the parents, family, and friends of GMC students. This weekend includes a choir performance, musical concert, vendors, art exhibitions, town-wide events, and more.
Honors Tea is an annual awards ceremony that celebrates students’ academic, social, and community service achievements.
Green Mountain College holds it annual commencement ceremony for undergraduate and graduate students on the Griswold Library Lawn. Past commencement speakers have included Vermont Governors Peter Shumlin and James Douglas; Vermont Rep. Peter Welch; U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy; actor Sam Watterson; and NPR “Car Talk” host Ray Magliozzi. The 2016 commencement ceremony, will be held outside (weather permitting) on the lawn in front of Griswold Library on Saturday, May 14, 2016.
Annual Choir & Cantorion Concerts
While the College Choir and Cantorion perform many times throughout the academic year, two concerts deserve special attention. The holiday concert, typically held in December, is a festive occasion that includes seasonal music. The commencement concert, typically held in May, highlights music from the choir’s spring tour as well as pieces by graduating seniors.
College Anthem: “This Green Place!”
“This Green Place” is based on the Welsh hymn, Calon Lân. At official College functions, the choir traditionally performs the piece, first in Welsh, then in English. The English words were written by poet and writer, Ed Moran, in 1996. Moran is the editor of Rhythm Magazine and a member of the Green Mountain College Board of Visitors.
At the end of orientation in the fall, the community celebrates the beginning of the academic year with academic convocation. New students are officially welcomed into the Green Mountain College community and seniors are recognized as they begin their final year at the College. This event is followed by the President’s Dinner.
Green Mountain College sponsors a week-long celebration of Earth Day. This celebration provides the campus community with a fun and informative array of events and highlights the College’s commitment to its environmental mission. Some typical Earth Day events are service learning projects, keynote speakers, classroom poster sessions, farm forums, and environmental recruiters.
Each year, the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) sponsors friendly competitions among two teams of staff and faculty. In the fall it’s a faculty/staff volleyball game and in the spring the teams take to the basketball court. Both games are open to the public and campus community. Interactive activities and prizes at half time are all part of the fun.
At the end of each semester, the Division of Student Life hosts a midnight breakfast & Karaoke night. Students take a break from studying for their finals and come to the dining hall to enjoy breakfast served by faculty and staff. Students can also enjoy the karaoke singing talents of their peers.
SAAC Winter Formal
The Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) sponsors an annual social event each year. Many years this has been a winter formal and more recently it has been a less formal themed dance. There is usually music for dancing, refreshments, casual conversation, and door prizes.
Graduating seniors, staff, faculty and trustees gather the day before Commencement to celebrate the end of the seniors’ college careers. During this event, seniors receive academic honors, reflect on their Green Mountain College experiences and officially join the ranks of alumni.
Each spring semester, the College Programming Board organizes a large on-campus concert. Student ballot decides the performer. Previous spring concert musicians include O.A.R., Dropkick Murphys, Blackalicious, The Presidents of the United State of America, and Keller Williams.
The annual Wellness Fair, sponsored by the Wellness Center, provides a forum that focuses on physical, mental, and spiritual wellness. The fair features vendors, demonstrations, lectures, and activities by service providers from throughout the region. This fair is open to all College students, staff, and faculty as well as the local schools throughout the region.
Welsh Harvest Festival
Green Mountain College annually pays tribute to the distinctive Welsh culture of Poultney and its surrounding communities. The campus community and public are invited to this free event which features Welsh music, Welsh food tastings, harvest games for kids, wagon rides, scarecrow making, and more.
- Athletic Achievement Brunch
- Faculty Colloquium Series
- Feminist Fair
- Holiday Dinner
- Killington Trick & Treats Winter Sports Competition
- Maple Fest
- Student Colloquium Series