Sep. 16, 2009

Family and Tradition at Geneseo


Even after building lives and careers in distant countries, Geneseo alumni are drawn back to their alma mater.

Sue Callaghan '73, was a Geneseo theater major who now lives in Athlone, Ireland. Sue returned to campus in June at the same time her niece was at the College for orientation. While Sue was visiting campus, she decided to memorialize the sacrifices her parents made in order to send her to Geneseo so many years ago.

Sue bought and engraved a brick from the Brick by Brick Capital Improvement Campaign. Proceeds from the sale of the $100 and $250 inscribed bricks go toward improvements and the preservation of McClellan House.

The message on Sue's brick honors her mother and father while at the same time creating a tangible legacy at the College that her niece can walk by every day.

The brick reads, "In memory of Doris and Charles Chapin who let me go and I flew."

Sue explains that her parents worked hard to send her to Geneseo and provide her with the skills, education and memories that would shape her life. "They struggled to find the money to send me to Geneseo," she said, "and now I am where I am because of it."

Sue Callaghan is an assistant professor of drama and creative arts in social care at Athlone Institute of Technology. While she may be separated from Geneseo by geography and time, her experiences here helped her become the person she is today, and her appreciation for that lives on, not only in her brick, but in the fact that her niece is continuing her family's Geneseo tradition.