Class of 2010 Remembers Classmate with a Scholarship

By Keith Davis

Traditionally a part of Homecoming and now held during Alumni and Homecoming Weekend, the Senior Class Happy Hour is a time for seniors to announce their class gift. This year, though, the Happy Hour was bittersweet. In overwhelming numbers, the Class of 2010 decided to establish a scholarship in memory of classmate Andrea Morton, who passed away last April from a brief and sudden illness.

“Usually, about 20 percent of the class participates in voting for the class gift,” said Alyssa Cooper, associate director of the Ithaca Fund. “But this year we had almost three times as many students weighing in and choosing a scholarship in Andrea’s memory. It was an extraordinary response to an extraordinary young woman.”

Addressing their fellow classmates on Saturday evening, October 10, members of the Senior Class Gift Committee paid tribute to their departed friend, referring to her as “accomplished and compassionate,” “remarkably engaged,” and “excelling in athletics, academics, and as a resident assistant.”

“Andrea was my RA sophomore year, and she left me with so many amazing memories,” said classmate Patty Kroog. “Seeing her face in the hall just made my day.”

“Everything she could do, she did,” said Ara Eckel, a friend from the class of 2009. “And she did it to the fullest.”

The list of what Andrea Morton did is long. A clinical health studies major with a music (voice) minor, she worked in the Fitness Center, served as an admission ambassador and water safety instructor, and was a member of the Physical Therapy Association, the Women’s Chorale, and club and intramural soccer teams. A recipient of the Peggy R. Williams Award for Academic and Community Leadership, Andrea made the Dean’s List every semester and was inducted into the Oracle Society, in recognition of her high academic achievement as a freshman, and into the College’s RA Hall of Fame. She performed with the Chautauqua Opera and, with her sister, Brittney, was a national anthem vocalist for the Buffalo Bills.

“I had the privilege of singing with Andrea in the Women’s Chorale,” said music education major Whitney Fland of the Senior Class Gift Committee. “She had a beautiful voice. She’ll be missed, but she’s always in my heart, and I’ll always be singing for her.”

President Tom Rochon addressed the crowd of students, alumni, board members, Andrea’s parents—Julie ’81 and Richard ’80—and Brittney.

“What you have done in designating this senior class gift in this way is something for which you will long be known,” said Rochon.

Upon hearing the gift announcement, board member Caroleen Feeney ’86 said she would match the entire senior class gift.

“The decisions made here tonight are wonderful and deeply moving,” President Rochon said. “We are all touched by this outpouring of affection and support.”