Welcome to the Alumni Class of 1981


Recent news from Class of '81

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Class of 1981 Cornell Tradition Fellowship

See the Get Involved page for a letter from our current scholarship recipient, Amanda Esteves.

Republican Mark Kirk '81 Wins Obama's Old Senate Seat

In one of the biggest Senate races in the nation, Mark Kirk on 11/2 won the seat once held by President Barack Obama. Kirk, a five-term House member, beat Illinois state Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias in a race that had been deadlocked in the polls most of the year. Giannoulias called Kirk to concede and congratulate his rival, and thanked supporters gathered in a ballroom at the Fairmont Hotel in Chicago "for believing in me." For other Cornellians' results in the elections, see the Cornell Sun article.

Homecoming 2010 Report

Our class joined the other Classes of the '80s for a group tailgate party before the Cornell Homecoming against Yale. Attendees included Steven Ritchey, Anne Snyder Marone, Renee Miller-Mizia, ... and who else? Let us know! See your name in print!

Classmates Elected to CU

Council Congratulations to the members of our class who were just elected to the Cornell University Council for four-year terms beginning July 1, 2010 and ending June 30, 2014. University Council members are elected based upon their leadership in Cornell volunteer activities, business and professional endeavors, and community and charity involvement. New members are John Outwin Boochever, Johnny Tak Yuen Fung, Wendy Rosenthal Gellman, Michael Andrew Troy, and Barry Paul Weiss. Returning members of our class are Douglas Heywood Calby, Alan Jay Cohen, Michael Gerald Hoard, and Gretchen Knoell. Thanks, folks!

Kurt Bettger Inducted into Hall of Fame

Cornell Athletic Hall of Fame has announced that its newest members will be inducted in October 2010, including Kurt Bettger '81, Men's Soccer. A four-year starter as a back in soccer, Bettger was a two-time All-Ivy first-team selection (1978 and '80) and was named to the second team in '79. He was a two-time All-American, earning second-team honors in 1980 and honorable mention accolades in 1979. Co-captain as a senior, Bettger participated in the Senior Bowl, where he helped the East team to a 3-2 win. He was Cornell's team MVP in 1979 and was co-team MVP in 1980 before being drafted by the Buffalo Stallions of the MISL.




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Giving Opportunities

Whether it's a Reunion year or not, there are many ways to show your support for our Alma Mater and for our Class. Through your payment of dues, you support our Class activities, mailings, and Reunion every five years. Through your volunteer efforts, you can support the CAAAN interviewing process, your local Cornell Clubs, your College Alumni Associations, your Class Campaign, or so many other efforts.

We hope that you will also support the University with a tax-deductible gift for the University as a whole, one of its Colleges, or a particular program of interest to you. Two specific programs you might consider are the Class of 1981 Memorial Cornell Tradition Fellowship, which supports one deserving student a year, and the Class of 1981 Book Fund, which supports book purchases by the University Libraries. Your annual gift is crucial in maintaining the exceptional education we were fortunate enough to benefit from and allowing students to enjoy such a remarkably diverse experience on campus.

As a Class, we continually strive to show the University and fellow classes how strong our Class is and how strongly we believe in giving back to the University. The simple fact of your donation, regardless of amount, is important, and can have a significant multiplier effect.

Did you know:

One of the factors considered in the US News and World Report college rankings is alumni participation -- meaning the number of alumni who give back, regardless of the amount.

Prospective freshmen and their parents are increasingly savvy consumers. Alumni participation is an obvious measure of customer satisfaction in the schools they are considering, as well as a factor in the rankings of schools in national publications.

Funding agencies these days give precedence to those institutions that help themselves, and that self-help is measured by alumni participation.

Your participation will not only help our Class's success, but also send a clear message about the value and strength of a Cornell education. If you have specific questions of how you can help, feel free to contact our Cornell Fund Representative or Class President. Also, for more information on the many ways to give back or to make your gift, please visit the Online Giving Opportunities or call the Cornell Fund at 1-800-279-3099.

Letter From Our Fellowship Student

Amanda Esteves
Cornell University
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
Biological Sciences Major

November 28, 2010

Dear Cornell Class of 1981:

As a recipient of the Class of 1981 Memorial Cornell Tradition Fellowship, I wanted to share my heartfelt thanks and tell you a bit about how this fellowship has affected me. I am currently a junior in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, pursuing a major in Biological Sciences and a minor in German Studies in hopes of attending medical school and one day becoming a doctor.

I originally come from Flemington, NJ and found Cornell to be an extremely foreign place when I arrived. Because of my dedication to work and community service in high school, I was awarded the Cornell Tradition Fellowship and began my community service at Cornell as soon as I arrived by taking part in the Pre-Orientation Service Trip (POST). In this program I met many wonderful people who were also a part of Cornell Tradition, and volunteered at several local programs such as the Family Reading Partnership and the Ithaca Youth Bureau. With this immediate introduction to other Cornellians and the Ithacan community, I found that Cornell was not such a strange place at all. Had it not been for the Tradition Fellowship I might not have been encouraged to take part in such an amazing program.

Since then I have done almost 300 hours of community service at various organizations and have worked over 400 hours as a Supervisor at the Mann Library Computing center. These experiences have taught me how to balance my work and service ethic with my studies. This past summer I participated in an internship with the pharmaceutical company Abbott in Barceloneta, Puerto Rico in the Microbiology department helping in quality assurance of the production of Humira?. This summer I plan on focusing on my MCAT's while conducting research on campus. This fellowship has given me both the motivation and the means to continue what I enjoy doing while studying at Cornell. I thank you for giving me this outstanding opportunity and allowing me to enrich my experience at Cornell University.

/s/ Amanda Esteves