Key events such as the masked ball and basketball games used to be held off campus. The new athletic complex, completed last month, allows the school to bring its most loved events back to school grounds.
“It’s very significant to our alumni who have graduated in the last 20 years and never had a full homecoming experience,” said Helene Carter, Paine’s assistant vice president of institutional advancement. “Homecoming games, that’s kind of the heart of homecoming, that’s the height, usually took place at other institutions on their campuses. Our alumni felt a little disconnected.”
Homecoming events will run from Thursday to Sunday, culminating with a worship service and gospel explosion at the campus chapel.
Richmond County Board of Education member and Paine alumnus Marion Barnes will serve as the grand marshal in the homecoming parade Saturday.
Other events include the Paine College Reunion, a Greek Step Show and a pilgrimage to the grave site of the school’s founders.
Carter said the school is holding an invitation-only President’s Club dinner Thursday that will honor alumni who donated $1,000 or more during the past fiscal year.
She said homecoming is a way for the community, students and alumni to feel a connection to a school that provides a service to the area.
“This is all really special to our alumni and students,” Carter said.