During the Easter Break, many families were on vacation but not the Head of School, Mr. Greg MacGilpin, Development and Alumni Relations Director Dr. Reine Youssef nor Ms. Danai El Hajj Ibrahim, Director of Alumni Affairs and Community Relations. Instead, the three embarked on the final leg of the 2016-17 ACS Alumni Tour to visit with alumni in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Austin, Texas.
For many alumni, it was a chance to reflect and share experiences from their time in school. There were representatives from a wide range of years, including Daniel Bliss’s granddaughter, Ms. Margit Bliss Orange, class of 1954 and 2016 graduate Farah Bissat. Each one talked of their days at ACS, mentioning the school closings, learning Arabic, long term lessons and the inspiring faculty who taught them. They wanted to know about the campus, had it changed since their days? How has the school grown, what are the younger alumni doing? Questions were asked about the current teachers, the students (1,100 today compared to 200 in the 1960s) and what the school is like today.
Board Member Melinda Brunger ’69 and her husband Bill Brunger ’66 travelled with the ACS team for the San Francisco and Austin reunions. Both Melinda and Bill attended the 2017 ACS Fundraising Dinner in March and are active alumni members who enjoy their visits to Lebanon. Together, they shared their experience of the school, what it was like to be in Lebanon during the 60s, the importance of education and their photos from ‘back in the day’ at ACS.
Career-wise, some were retired after many years of working while others were just starting down their career paths. Ramy Ballout ’99, for example, has just launched a travel app in San Francisco. All alumni agreed that they enjoyed meeting new students from the school and sharing their experiences. This trip reinforced the ACS Mission Statement as it was full of former students serving the world community with creativity and integrity.