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What’s Your Story?

By Sherri Kimmel

By the time you read this magazine, the biggest, best-attended Alumni Weekend in College history will have130621_kimmel_a_copy.jpg concluded. If you were one of the more than 2,000 attendees, perhaps you met me or another member of the magazine staff wearing a T-shirt bearing the slogan “What’s Your Story?” Beneath that slogan was the new magazine nameplate (the stylized name of the publication as it appears on the cover). You’ll see the real deal in print and online when our redesign debuts in October.

Last October, I noted in this column that we were in the midst of assessing the needs of our readers in anticipation of a redesign that would occur during the College’s sesquicentennial year. Since then, we have selected our redesign partner, Zehno Cross Media Communications. During the Alumni Weekend timeframe, layout concepts were still in progress, but we could offer a sneak peek by displaying the new nameplate on our shirts.

While the look of the magazine will change, the commitment to substantive storytelling, which has been its hallmark, will not. This magazine has always existed to tell the story of Swarthmore and its people. We’ll keep sleuthing for stories and hope you will contribute ideas for those you’d like to see us tell in future issues.

This issue captures a lot of your personal stories. When we placed a promo in our January issue asking readers to contribute stories of how they met their Quaker matchbox mates, we expected a good response. And we got it—29 stories, with photos—and included as many as we could in our print edition. The overflow appears online at

During our sesquicentennial year, we’ve been looking for other untold stories. We’ve run stories about the importance of the train to the College’s founding; revolutionary women like Alice Paul, Class of 1905; and a well-established fellowship that fosters diversity in the academy. In this issue, we detail the histories of some of our LGBT alumni, some of whom are matchbox couples. We also postulate whether or not the distinctive liberal arts essence of Swarthmore can be bottled, profile Jeopardy! champ Arthur Chu ’06, and explore the history and future of walkable urban environments. I hope you like our mix of topics.

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