A Cheerful Evening at the Annual Alumni Reception

There was a palpable sense of excitement as warm laughter and giddy conversation peppered the main ballroom at the University of Washington Club on Nov. 8, as the Law, Societies, and Justice Program held its annual Alumni Reception and Silent Auction. Old friends were reunited as live jazz music wafted through the air, coming together to celebrate the success of the LSJ program and to support its future endeavors.

The event gave alumni, both of the previous Society and Justice Program and the current LSJ Program, faculty, and a spattering of current majors the opportunity to gather in celebration of LSJ’s current success, connect in a social setting, and support the program’s current commitment to the Stromberg Endowed Scholarship Fund.

While many of the alumni present were graduates from within the last five years, there was a significant presence of graduates of all ages.

Several LSJ faculty members were present—Jonathan Wender, Katherine Beckett, Michael McCann, George Lovell, Rachel Cichowski, Arzoo Osanloo, and Carolyn Pinedo Turnovsky—and had the opportunity to catch up with former students and learn about their widely varying career paths.

Those in attendance were able to bid on a variety of enticing items, ranging from a weekend getaway at a cabin on Lake Kachess, to a generous collection of books written by LSJ faculty, to a custom hand-sewn UW quilt, with all of the proceeds benefitting the Stromberg Scholarship fund. All of the very generous bidding enabled the Stromberg Fund to build further, which will enhance the Program’s ability to support future LSJ students to pursue a study abroad program.

Approaching the midway point of the evening, Program Director and LSJ Professor Steve Herbert gave a brief speech detailing the ever-growing popularity of the LSJ program at the University of Washington and the continued excellence that the major attracts.

Here, Professor Herbert commented on the rising popularity of the LSJ major amongst incoming students. A survey of this year’s freshman class revealed that more than 80 indicated an interest in majoring in LSJ, which placed it third amongst social science majors.

Herbert also quoted from a recent e-mail exchange with the volunteer coordinator for the Downtown Emergency Services Center. LSJ alumni and students have come together for a “Day of Service” the past two years at a DESC facility. When Herbert contacted them recently about arranging a similar experience soon, the response included the following quote: “Your groups’ previous volunteer efforts with us are quite legendary! When word got out that you were wanting to come again, everyone was thrilled.” As Herbert indicated, the word, legendary, applies quite well to LSJ!

The event also featured remarks from Michael Moore, the inaugural recipient of the Stromberg Scholarship. Moore described the value of his recent experience studying abroad in Ireland, and the Netherlands. He said that the Stromberg Scholarship gave him access to an invaluable educational opportunity that he may otherwise not have been able to afford. You can read more about Michael’s experience here.

All in all, the event was a thoroughly enjoyable evening for all of those in attendance, and we look forward to reconvening at next year’s reception.


This article was written by Chase Beauclair