Why Should You Stay Involved with Your Alma Mater?
If you're like most people, you may not have the tightest connection with your high school alma mater. It's typical for graduates to go out into the world, heading off to college, trade school, the workforce or the armed forces. It’s the beginning of adult life.
As time goes on, we tend to lose a strong sense of connection with the schools we attended in our formative years. But more than any yearbook, class ring or Facebook group, staying engaged and involved with your alma mater is a great way to keep that connection—and even help out current students in meaningful ways.
Even if you are someone who put considerable distance between your high school and your current life, you can still stay involved. And, a good place to start is by joining Ripon Tiger Nation.
Why should you stay connected?
There are many beneficial reasons to stay involved with your high school as an alumni—more than just for nostalgia’s sake. Here are just a few examples:
- High schools are always looking for examples of successful alumni. From mentorships and speaking engagements to a feature in the newsletter, your alma mater wants to see that its students have gone on to achieve something.
- Panels, workshops and seminars are all popular with staff and parents. Schools often seek leaders and contributors for these events and frequently find the best option is an alumnus.
- Reconnecting with former teachers and peers through an alumni network helps grow your personal and professional circles. There’s no telling what opportunities will come from simply reaching out to those who were important to you from your past.
- You can have a voice. If you’re someone in a position to donate time or money to your alma mater, being an active alumnus can afford you all sorts of benefits. This includes having key input when it comes to the future direction of the school district.
- It’s fun! You’ll get the chance to connect with current students and staff and involve yourself in numerous ways. You might work directly with student organizations or assist administrators as they enrich a school's programs or services.
Your high school days may be behind you, but your opportunities to involve yourself in the future of your alma mater have just begun. Reach out to Ripon High School through our alumni network and explore the many possibilities for affecting real, positive change.
Ripon Alumni: You're Invited to These Upcoming Events
As our students, staff and families get ready to finish out the school year strong, they are also preparing for a variety of great spring events here in the Ripon Area School District. These include everything from concerts and theater performances to athletics and more.
We would like to send a special invitation to our alumni, supporters and community members to attend these winter and spring events:
Ripon High School Musical: "Oklahoma"
February 14, 15 and 16
Ripon High School
The RHS/Lumen Drama Department performs a colorful Rodgers and Hammerstein classic. For showtimes and other event information, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/2319087861661392/.
Friday, February 15 at 4:30 p.m.
Ripon High School Commons
Support the Rippon Art Department and get a delicious meal while you’re at it.
Big Band Jazz Concert
Saturday, February 23 at 7:00 p.m.
Ripon High School Commons
Refreshments and live music provided by the RHS jazz band featuring classic and contemporary jazz hits. Bring your dancing shoes! More information available at https://www.facebook.com/events/1090129074524743/
Friday, March 29 at 4:45 p.m.
Barlow Park Baseball Diamond
Cheer on the Ripon varsity baseball team as the Tigers open the season against Laconia.
Ripon Middle School Musical: "Annie"
April 4, 5 and 6
Ripon High School
Our middle school students put on this classic musical, which follows the story of an orphan named Annie living a “hard-knock life" at the New York City Municipal Orphanage. Find more information and showtimes at https://www.facebook.com/events/625884134513809/.
RHS Spring Band Concert
Monday, May 6 at 7:00 p.m.
Ripon High School
RHS Spring Choir Concert
Monday, May 13 at 7:00 p.m.
Ripon High School
Saturday, May 25 at 11:00 a.m.
Ripon High School
Celebrate the Class of 2019 as students walk across the stage to receive their diplomas.
Mark your calendar with these upcoming events and celebrate the season of new beginnings with our incredible community here at the Ripon Area School District. You can also learn more by checking out our online events calendar. Go Tigers!
When you serve as a mentor, you can pass on your knowledge, wisdom and advice to students as they learn and grow. More than that, it also allows you to give back to the educational institution that helped you get to where you are today. It speaks volumes about your character and can even help you grow and develop as a leader and professional.
Mentorship is something that’s valuable both ways. More than the good feeling you get from teaching and encouraging someone your junior, that individual is gaining access to a wealth of understanding and experience. Mentees often go on to do big things, thanks in part to the person who took time to be their mentor. They may even go on to become a mentor themselves—creating a legacy of giving back.
How mentoring benefits students
For students, having a mentor brings with it numerous, long-lasting benefits. Let’s take a look at five ways Ripon students benefit from mentorship:
- Students gain practical, applicable advice that might not be taught in the classroom, which can be applied throughout their personal and future professional lives. They’ll enter college or the job force a leg up on pure classroom learners.
- Mentorship creates a bond that may benefit everything from professional networking to personal growth—especially at a pivotal time in a high school student’s life. A mentor is a guide for students facing uncertainty in their future and someone on whom they can rely.
- Mentees get one-on-one attention that helps them to better understand and retain information, while also connecting that knowledge to classroom lessons. They’ll benefit from more focused learning and a stronger grasp on content.
- Students get a better understanding of real-world expectations and applications, direct from someone who has experienced them firsthand. This necessary dose of reality will shape their understanding of the world outside the classroom.
- Mentorship is free! It affords students access to a crucial resource for development that’s not hidden behind a financial barrier. For students unable to afford tutoring or those disadvantaged by a lack of available programs, mentoring is an incredibly valuable experience.
Serving as a mentor
For mentors, being able to pass along wisdom to a younger generation is a truly gratifying experience. We invite you to sign up as a volunteer and see for yourself the profound effect mentorship can have on a student.
A great education is critically important for our children, community and society as a whole. Ripon area students, parents and alumni are well aware of the impact a strong K-12 education can have in preparing young people for life beyond the classroom.
During this season of giving, you can make tax-deductible charitable contributions to support the Ripon Area School District, just like you would any other organization or cause important to you. Our donors allow us to expand our programs and services, providing our students with the best educational experiences possible from pre-K through high school.
If you’re thinking about making a contribution to support Ripon area schools, now is the perfect time of the year to do so. Not only does charitable giving in December give you the opportunity to spread some holiday cheer, but it also allows you to enjoy some benefits come tax time in April.
Charitable donations to the Ripon Education Foundation support the mission of our district and enable us to enhance the programs, events and academic opportunities we can deliver to our students. You can make a gift online using a credit card or send a check by mail to the Ripon Education Foundation Office. Donations are tax deductible.
You can also help support the Ripon Area School District by shopping with Amazon Smile. When you select the Ripon Education Foundation on Amazon Smile, .5 percent of your purchase will be donated to the foundation. It really adds up in the long run!
You can also contribute to Ripon area schools as a volunteer. We have a variety of great volunteer opportunities in which you can participate, whether you’re interested in hosting an event, serving as a mentor or simply supporting our schools on social media.
No matter how you choose to help out Ripon's students, we encourage you to get involved and contribute to all the incredible things happening in our schools and community. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you would like to learn more.
The Ripon Area School District recently launched an Alumni and Community Interest Survey, asking our former students to provide us with feedback and input on their impressions of the district and how we can best engage them.
In large numbers, alumni spoke to the positive outcomes for Ripon graduates, made possible by quality programs, teachers and facilities. The district's academics, fine arts, athletics, STEM program and recent facility enhancements also received high marks from survey respondents.
"Almost all of my family graduated from this wonderful school district," wrote one alumnus. "Our success as adults is due in part to our preparation from Ripon schools."
Another wrote: "I am proud to be a Ripon Tiger because it was in that school that I figured out who I am. Between the classes I took and the teachers who mentored me, it all led me down the path that I currently walk today."
Communicating with our former students
It was wonderful to read all the great responses and comments. However, we also received a lot of practical feedback that will help us as we work to connect with more alumni in the coming months.
For example, many respondents reported that they would like to receive alumni-focused news and updates via the Ripon Nation website, social media and email and e-newsletters. They also expressed interest in getting invited to more school- and alumni-related events and activities.
More than 70 percent of alumni said that they would find considerable benefit in keeping in touch with their former classmates through an online directory — something Ripon Nation provides. They also said that they would like more information on volunteer opportunities, along with guest speaking in classrooms and mentoring current Ripon students.
We would like to thank everyone who took part in this survey. It was a great experience for our district and staff, and we look forward to taking the results and brainstorming how we can best serve you, our alumni, as we move forward.
Homecoming is truly a special time of year in Ripon. In addition to being a fantastic experience for our current students, the week also allows our entire community—and especially our outstanding alumni—to come together in support of our schools. It's a wonderful tradition we have the honor of celebrating each fall.
This year was particularly special, as Tuesday brought with it the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the all-new RASD tennis courts! We're looking forward to many generations of students and community members enjoying the new facilities.
We were also pleased to name Tracy O'Brien with our 2018 Distinguished Alumni Award. Tracy is a Ripon High School graduate who taught fourth grade in the district for many years until his retirement in 2011. He is now on the Ripon Historical Society board of directors and serves as its education coordinator. Tracy has demonstrated a true commitment to education throughout his life.
On Friday, the Ripon High School hosted its annual Homecoming Breakfast, followed shortly thereafter by the Pep Assembly, where this year's homecoming court was announced. In the afternoon, the Homecoming Parade marched through downtown Watson Street, leading up to the varsity football game.
We would like to thank all of our alumni, community members and supporters who took part in the homecoming festivities this year. You are such a big reason of what makes Ripon a wonderful place to live, work and learn. #RiponNation
As part of our efforts to form greater connections with our graduates and the community, we are thrilled to launch this new online community: Ripon Tiger Nation.
Through this community, all Ripon School District alumni, supporters and community members will be able to stay connected and receive regular updates and news articles, along with a wide range of information on special events, mentoring, and volunteer opportunities. There's also an alumni directory where you can submit your name and connect with old friends and classmates.
In addition, we are also conducting an alumni and community interest survey, seeking feedback regarding the information, services and updates that are important to you.
We want to hear from you
Ripon alumni and local residents are some of our most passionate supporters, and we believe we can do much more to keep all engaged in the challenges and opportunities of our community's public schools. Through this community interest survey, we hope to learn more about what it would mean for our school district to forge stronger bonds with our former students and all community members. In short, we are thrilled to move ahead with this exciting initiative.
Graduates of Ripon High School, former school district students, supporters and all Ripon-area residents may sign up for Tiger Nation and receive regular news and updates. This includes information on district news and events, community points of pride, class reunions and how alumni and residents can get more involved in Ripon schools. There will also be regular profiles on alumni who have gone on to serve their communities in notable ways.
We invite you to explore all that this online community has to offer. And, as always, Go Tigers!
Homecoming is the perfect time to reconnect with your former classmates and Ripon friends! We warmly invite you to attend any or all of our Homecoming Week (September 16-22) activities listed below.
The Homecoming Parade, a time-honored tradition in our school community, will begin at 4:00 p.m. down Watson Street on Friday, September 21. The parade will feature the 2018 Distinguished Alumni, the middle school and high school marching bands, members of the RHS fall sports teams, RHS clubs, youth football, and will highlight the Ripon Tiger Nation.
Following the parade stop by an old favorite place or check out one of our new restaurants in town to grab a bite to eat before heading to Ingall's Field for the game. The Tigers will be taking on Plymouth High School with kickoff at 7:00 p.m. Be sure to stop by the Ripon Tiger Nation table!
On Saturday at 3 p.m. come tour the Middle and High School.
HOMECOMING WEEK ACTIVITIES:
Sunday, September 16
- 6:00 p.m. - Bubble Soccer: Senior vs Junior Girls @ Ingalls Field
Monday, September 17
- 4:30 p.m. - Football: JV Game vs Waupun @ Ingalls Field
- 7:00 p.m. - Soccer: Varsity Boys Game vs. Omro @ Ingalls Field
Tuesday, September 18
- 3:30 p.m. - Official Ribbon Cutting for New Tennis Courts
- 3:30 p.m. - Cross Country: Invitational @ Lake Breeze Golf Club Winneconne
- 4:00 p.m. - Tennis: Girls Varsity Meet vs. Plymouth @ Ripon High School
Thursday, September 20
- 4:30 p.m. - Soccer: Boys Varsity Game vs. Kettle Moraine @ Ingalls Field
- 5:30 p.m. - Volleyball: JV Game vs. Plymouth @ RHS
- 6:45 p.m. - Volleyball: Varsity Game vs. Plymouth @ RHS
Friday, September 21
- 6:30-8:00 a.m. - Homecoming Breakfast ($5 per person/$3 age 3 and under) - HS Commons
- 8:00 a.m. - Pep Assembly - Court Announced
- 4:00 p.m. - Homecoming Parade - Downtown Watson Street, Ripon
- 7:00 p.m. - Football: Varsity Game vs. Plymouth @ Ingalls Field
Saturday, September 22
- 3:00 p.m. - Tour of Middle and High School for alumni, supporter or community member
- 3:30 p.m. - Cross Country: Invitational @ Lake Denoon MS Muskego