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News from the May Dell - November, 2021

From the Head of School

Kris Sorrells campus brick building background

With the Thanksgiving holiday approaching, I wanted to take a moment to say how grateful I am to be part of the Salem community. This community includes students, faculty, staff, families, alumnae and even spans back to the original group of women who walked from Pennsylvania to North Carolina 250 years ago.

Those 16 women traveling in 1766 were challenged by the weather, wilderness conditions, and other obstacles. By keeping true to their goals and supporting each other, they finally made their way to North Carolina and eventually to the creation of our amazing institution.  Their experience has shown me that we often need to journey beyond our comfort zone and work through many challenges in order to move forward. With the support of our Salem community, reaching our goals will be the final result!

So thank you Salem community for being inspiring, empowering, and encouraging. Thank you for your continued support and dedication to the mission of educating girls to become inspiring leaders and confident people.

Kris Porazzi Sorrells
Head of School

alumnae journey arrival with 250 flag

The Journey to Salem: Triumphant Finish to A Remarkable Experience!

On a picture-perfect North Carolina fall day, over 350 Salem Academy and College alumnae, students, faculty, staff, friends, and supporters participated in the final 6.8-mile leg of the Journey from Bethlehem to Salem on Tuesday, October 26.

Skies were a beautiful clear blue, leaves boasted vibrant reds and oranges and yellows along the way, and walkers decked out in College blue and gold and Academy purple and gold followed the fearless Fab 5, who walked the entire 29-day jaunt, from Bethabara to Salem while reminiscing about all of the incredible ways that Salem has shaped them. There were older alumae walking alongside current students, faculty walking alongside board members, and parents walking alongside community members. There were short breaks in the midst of the beauty of Reynolda Gardens and the majestic stone of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.

Cars honked their horns and shop owners waved, hundreds of photos were taken, and cheers erupted loudly as the group made its way into Corpening Plaza to join Mayor Allen Joines, and the Winston-Salem State University (WSSU) drum line and WSSU Chancellor Elwood Robinson for the final stretch. There were dances and hugs and tears and more hugs. The parade continued onto Salem’s own campus for a celebration in the shadows of Main Hall. It truly was a glorious day.

As Lucy Rose, C’76 and a member of the Fab 5, perfectly stated in one word, the day was “overwhelming.” In the best of ways. It showed the love that Salem gives and the love that Salem receives, and it was a day that truly has ignited our future while honoring our past.

The last day of the Journey garnered some great media coverage:

Here is the Winston-Salem Journal photo gallery recap and a fun video that the Winston-Salem Journal took of the WSSU Drumline.

The City of Winston-Salem created a wonderful video of the events of October 26.

A nice recap of the final leg of the Journey was presented in a WGHP Fox8 story.

WFDD, our local public radio station also ran a story.

Journey from Bethlehem to Salem

Women's Fund

Girl Up at Salem Academy Awarded Grant from The Women’s Fund of Winston-Salem

At its annual luncheon this week, The Women’s Fund of Winston-Salem generously awarded a grant to Salem Academy to support the Girl Up Mentor Program.  The Women’s Fund provides financial support to programs that have a focus on economic security and aim to make a positive impact on women and girls in Forsyth County. 

The Girl Up Mentor Program at Salem Academy is a co-curricular program implemented by Academy students to support economically disadvantaged girls in Winston-Salem. Participants are academically gifted students who do not have the financial ability to participate in extracurricular activities. The program brings middle school girls to Salem Academy’s campus and connects them with Academy students to encourage them to set academic and career goals and to pursue their interests. Under the guidance of Ms. Lawrence, Academy students design activities to match the girls’ interests and create lesson plans for activities. These activities will include robotics and debate as well as a chance to work in a science lab and the Drama Workshop.

Program participants are enrolled in the Girl Up Mentor Program throughout their middle school years. Funds awarded by The Women’s Fund will be used to provide a reliable transportation system for the girls to the campus of Salem Academy and College. These funds will also help support programming and finance activities for participants in the program which is specifically designed to encourage middle school girls to attend college. 

Mark Your Calendars for the Health Leadership Forum in April!

As a key component of Salem’s new Health Leadership focus, this inaugural Forum will take place on April 21, 2022 and will feature a selection of women leaders who are widely recognized as experts and innovators across disciplines. Panels focusing on Health Science, Health Humanities, and Health Advocacy and Humanitarian Systems will offer students, educators, and community members an opportunity to consider holistic solutions to local and global health challenges.

250 Merchandise Available Online

Looking for great holiday gifts? Look no further than our new 250 Merchandise Online Store, your exclusive source for Salem Academy and College 250 Celebration items. You’ll find t-shirts (long sleeve and short sleeve), baseball caps, Silipint cups and wine glasses, koozies, car decals and magnets, blankets, tote bags, and lapel pins. Also available is the 250th anniversary reprint of the book Less Time For Meddling, by Frances Griffin. This history of Salem Academy and College is an inspiring read! A great book to curl up with in front of the fire during the winter months!

Meet Kalen DeLapp

Kalen DeLapp (2021)

Salem Academy has a new Admissions Counselor!  Her name is Kalen DeLapp, and she holds a Bachelor's degree in sociology from UNC Greensboro. She is from Raleigh and has future plans to study for a Master's in higher education. In her spare time, you can find Kalen spending time with her family and her puppy. Her hobbies include traveling, cooking, exploring new restaurants, and reading. Kalen is eager to meet prospective Salem Academy students and parents.

Admissions is hard at work recruiting students for Salem Academy! Twenty families attended the in-person Open House, and 10 families joined our virtual open house this past week. In addition, we've already had 20 visitors to campus this fall.

Athletics at Salem

Physical exercise has long been an important part of life at Salem Academy and College. The catalog for 1877–1878 states:

“The aim of the school is to afford a safe and pleasant home for those who may be entrusted to its care, to aid them in acquiring a solid education and healthy physical development, and in laying a substantial foundation of moral discipline and spiritual knowledge and culture.”

Boarding students in the 19th century were instructed to bring “thick-soled walking-shoes” and to purchase a uniform for calisthenic exercise. Daily walks with their teachers were considered important for the physical well-being of students.

The first tennis courts were built in 1886 behind Main Hall, and a basketball court was built where the Rondthaler Science Building now stands by 1903. The Salem Athletic Association was formed in 1916 and was concerned with intramural sports at Salem.

The outdoor swimming pool located behind Clewell Residence Hall was built in 1924 and was first used for a swim meet in 1925. Images of students sunbathing in the empty pool are well-known. The legend that Clewell residents once jumped into the pool from their dorm rooms, however, is not substantiated. The pool was filled in and converted to a patio in 1965. Today’s College and Academy swim teams compete in the indoor pool, which is used by many local teams.

By the middle of the 20th century, formal athletic teams were well established. Salem joined the Athletic Federation of College for Women in 1947 and began intercollegiate sports in 1969. That same year the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women was also formed. In 2008, Salem College became a full-fledged member of the NCAA.

Over the years, Salem has had a number of athletes well-known in their sport. Jane Barkman Brown was a gold medalist in swimming at the 1968 Olympics. In February 2019, Salem Academy and College celebrated its first class to be inducted into its Athletics Hall of Fame. In the words of former College Athletics Director Patricia Hughes, Salem’s Hall of Fame was designed “to honor and remember forever the legacies and achievements of Salem’s athletes, coaches, teams, and supporters to reinforce the wonderful history and tradition of Salem Academy and College Athletics.”

Today’s Academy Sabers field teams in a wide range of competitive sports including fencing. The College Spirits currently compete in volleyball, softball, basketball, soccer, swimming, and tennis. In addition, weekly physical activities such as yoga and Tai Chi are offered to both College and Academy students. Through its physical education programs, Salem continues to recognize the importance of a healthy body for physical and emotional wellness.

Michelle Hopkins Lawrence
Co-chair of 250th History Committee

Salem Seal License Plate

Deadline Approaching to Order Your North Carolina Salem License Plate! Act Now!

Thanks to a generous supporter of Salem Academy and College, a limited number of North Carolina Salem Academy and College license plates are being offered to alumnae and supporters at no charge. Fill out this form by December 1. Salem will submit the applications to the State of North Carolina, after which the legislature is anticipated to approve our plate, which will then be rolled out (probably in 2022). You will receive your plate in the mail when they are available. Until then, your existing plates are valid. Completed forms should be sent to: Renee Garcia-Prajer, Office of the President, Salem Academy and College, 601 South Church Street, Winston-Salem, NC 27101.

radium girls poster

The Fall 2021 Theatre Production: Radium Girls Was a Big Hit

The Salem Academy Theatre Department presented Radium Girls as the fall production between November 4 and November 6. With 25 students involved onstage and behind the scenes, a glowing time was had by all! This play was inspired by a true and powerful story about the women working in factories, who, unbeknownst to them, were exposed to radioactive materials while painting watch dials.

Salem Academy and College Triangle Alumnae Club Shopping Event on December 6

NOFO alumnae event invitation (2021)

Buy Local, Live Local and Shop Safely! In light of the current pandemic, we have worked closely with the owner of NOFO @ the Pig, Jean Poe Martin C’64, to ensure the safety of patrons and staff. NOFO will be open to Salem alumnae between 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. on December 6, and the restaurant will be closed. Anyone entering the store will be required to wear a mask. We hope you can join us in supporting a fellow alumna and enjoying some time out shopping.

NOFO offers a wealth of carefully chosen products from North Carolina and the South. Come find perfect gifts during this shopping event!

Plus enjoy 15% off all purchases with free gift wrapping. 5% of event profits will be donated to Salem!

Reunion Weekend 2022: April 22–23

Mark your calendars! All Salem Academy and College alumnae are invited to attend a special 250th Anniversary All-Class Reunion Weekend on April 22–23, 2022. Everyone is welcome and we will have special events honoring the classes ending in 2s and 7s, in addition to those classes who missed their Reunions in 2020 and 2021 (the classes ending in 0s, 1s, 5s, and 6s). Stay tuned for more information!

Save the Date for Installation of Dr. Summer McGee as President

Save the Date for President McGee Installation - April 22, 2022

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