Alumnae Hall and Alumnae House are both named in honor of Hood College alumnae and alumni. The first degrees from The Women’s College of Frederick, now known as Hood, were awarded in 1895. To date, over 10,500 bachelor’s degrees and 2,266 master’s degrees have been awarded to graduates.
In 1897, the Hood College Alumnae Association was established. According to its bylaws, the Alumnae Association was established “to promote the well being of the college and its alumnae and further the cause of higher education.” The bylaws of the Alumnae Association define an alumna or alumnus as anyone who earned 12 academic credits and left the College in good academic standing.
Alumni have played an important role in campus life. Hood College’s long-standing traditions and Hood community outreach activities were supported by the Alumnae Association. New students have been greeted in the fall by Alumnae Association representatives, and the Alumnae Association would help sponsor the spring semester Sophomore Dinner, when class patches are distributed. A reception given by the Alumnae Association for juniors precedes the Ring Dinner, a formal occasion where juniors may wear the distinctive Hood College ring for the first time. The popular Strawberry breakfast, for graduates and their families the morning of graduation, is hosted by the association.
The Hood College Magazine has its roots in the former Alumnae News Bulletin. The content of the magazine is developed in conjunctions with an alumnae and alumni editorial board.
Alumnae and alumni return to the campus the first weekend of June for Reunion Weekend, with class reunions held every five years. Special recognition is given to the 25th and 50th reunion classes, and three awards are presented: the Alumnae Achievement Award, the Distinguished Alumna Award, and the Outstanding Young Alumna Award. Twenty-seven alumnae and alumni hold honorary degrees from Hood College.
Alumnae and alumni also play an important role in the governance of Hood. Six alumni are recommended by the Alumni Association to serve as Alumni Trustees.
The buildings named for alumnae and alumni are important hubs of activity. Alumnae Hall, popularly known as the Ad building, was conceived by Hood College’s first president, Joseph Henry Apple, and built under contract by Lloyd Culler. Margaret Scholl Hood’s gift of land and subsequent bequest enabled the College to begin construction of Alumnae Hall and Shriner Hall. Ground was broken on April 2, 1914; the cornerstone was laid in conjunction with the 1914 Commencement; and the building was occupied in the fall of 1915. The four iconic columns that grace its front were named Hope, Opportunity, Obligation, and Democracy.
Alumnae Hall currently houses administrative offices for the President, the Division of Administration and Finance, the Division of Academic Affairs, the Division of Student Affairs, the Tidball Center for the Study of Educational Environments, and the Department of Sociology and Social Work.
Alumnae House was originally built in 1920 as a home for the College president. Plans for the house had been drawn up over a number of years by Dr. Apple and his family. Funds to construct the home came largely from contributions from loyal and loving alumnae and alumni.
After the new president’s house was built in 1961, the building was used as a residence and foreign language house. In 1989 it was renovated to house the offices of Development and Alumnae Programs. Contributing major gifts for the renovation were Sylvia Weinberg of Frederick and Katharine Cutshall ’24 of Baltimore and the Cutshall Family.
Alumnae House serves as a visitor center for alumni returning to the campus throughout the year.