The American School of Classical Studies at Athens is pleased to announce a major gift from its Alumni/ae Association in support of the new Student Center. The Association has named the Alumni/ae Terrace in honor of all School alumni, both past and present. The cherished porch, formerly known as the East Terrace, is located in Loring Hall and is a favorite gathering place for students and scholars.
In 2016, members gathered on the Terrace to toast fellow alumna and colleague Barbara Tsakirgis (Tsakirgis was a past Alumni/ae Association president who passed away in 2019)
“When the campaign for the Student Center began, there was no doubt what the alumni/ae would want to name,” said Elizabeth (Liz) Langridge-Noti, President of the Alumni/ae Association. “The Terrace represents one of the greatest gifts that the School has given us: the opportunity to create collegial, crossdisciplinary networks through informal and enjoyable interaction. On that porch, many of us learned how to talk about our research topics, beginning with our dissertations, and found senior scholars who were willing to take the time to listen to what we were doing. After meeting us, they would stop by our desks to see how our research was going or to point out a new or useful book. We built networks of friends and scholars on the Terrace whom, as years passed, we were able to introduce to others—our students and colleagues coming to the School for the first time.”
From left: Alumni/ae Liz Langridge-Noti, Lee Brice, John Oakley, Daniel Levine, Georgia Tsouvala, and Glenn Bugh (all have been Summer Session directors; Liz, John, Daniel, and Georgia have been Alumni/ae Association presidents) on the Terrace
Liz explained, “Every year as the Regular Program winds down and the summer research crowd begins to arrive at the American School, there is the greeting of old friends and the welcoming of new friends, students, and scholars. They would come together in Loring Hall and the East Terrace for teatime, ouzo hour, and post-dinner coffee. Gatherings on the Terrace usually begin with one or two people early in the summer and grow to over 20 at the height of the season. Students and scholars would sit around bistro tables with as many folding chairs as can be found or perch on the low marble walls surrounding the veranda.”
Members come to the Terrace for relaxation, refreshments, and good conversation
Reflecting on what the East Terrace has meant to her, Liz reminisced, “It has been part of my life since I first arrived at the School in 1986 as a Summer Session student. The Terrace was a welcome respite—especially after long days during one of the hottest years in Greece. I then returned to Athens as a Regular Member in the fall of 1988. As a nervous graduate student, I found scholars who made approaching them easy through a cup of tea or a glass of wine and then willingly shared their knowledge when I approached them in the library. Later, as I slowly transformed into a senior scholar, I would drop by to not only see old friends but also meet their students and get excited about the new projects I saw emerging. Sadly, for the first time since 1988, I will not be able to spend at least some time on the Terrace with old and new colleagues.”
The Terrace is a popular gathering spot for students and scholars alike
Mark Lawall, Chair of the School’s Managing Committee, was a fellow at the School from 1991–1993 and has returned often to carry out research at the Athenian Agora, Corinth, and elsewhere. He commented, “The Alumni/ae Association is a marvelous collection of people with a diverse range of experiences at the School. These include volunteer excavators at the Athenian Agora, students in summer travel-study programs, graduate students who spent one, two, or more years at the School completing their doctoral theses, as well as past and present faculty and staff. The Association and the East Terrace are both places of connecting and reconnecting. Scholars from the Gennadius Library and the Archives can congregate with denizens of the Blegen Library and Wiener Laboratory across the street. If the summer sessions are in town, the Athens-bound folk can listen wistfully to stories of their hill-climbing adventures. The Association’s support of this project neatly complements its long-standing support of students through fellowships and gifts of needed equipment, furnishings, and other amenities.”
Ouzo hour is a time-honored tradition on the Terrace
About the Alumni/ae Association
The Alumni/ae Association has been connecting members of the School community for more than 80 years. Through this network, former students and faculty unite—in Greece and the U.S.—to strengthen their bonds and to support School initiatives.
In January 2019, the Association graciously agreed to raise funds to name the Alumni/ae Terrace. They launched the Alumni/ae Student Center Initiative, and generous members have helped it achieve more than half of its goal. This is an active campaign, so alumni/ae are encouraged to pledge their support by clicking the link below.
The Alumni/ae Association provides an outlet for members to connect with old friends and meet new ones
About the Student Center Campaign
The Student Center Campaign was launched in October 2018 to raise funds for renovating and expanding the three aging buildings that serve as the intellectual and residential heart of the American School: Loring Hall, the Annex, and West House. This transformative project will increase housing capacity, reduce energy consumption, add state-of-the-art features and technology, and bring the buildings up to the latest technical standards—all while preserving the complex’s historical appearance. The Student Center will remain the place where members of the community gather for meals, tea, ouzo hour, holiday celebrations, and lectures—a source of lifelong professional and personal relationships that characterize the collegial and intellectually vibrant atmosphere of the School. This modernized setting will enhance that experience and will meet the needs of the School community well into the future.
The goal of the Student Center campaign is $9.4 million, inclusive of a maintenance endowment. Thanks to the generosity of supporters like the Alumni/ae Association, $6.7 million has been raised to date. The new Student Center is expected to open in June 2021.
Support the Campaign
To learn more about how you can support this historic initiative, please contact Nancy Savaides, Director of Stewardship and Engagement, at email@example.com or 609-454-6810. Naming opportunities for a variety of spaces in the Student Center are still available. Donors can choose from a wide range of gift levels to name a room or area in honor of themselves, an American School scholar, or a family member, friend, or group. Please click the links below to view the nameable spaces and options that remain:
Student Center Construction Photo Gallery
Click this link to view more photographs of the work in progress.