Professor giving a lecture to students in old main

Wofford College Alumni Association to present awards during Homecoming Celebration, Oct. 7-9

September 26, 2005

SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The Wofford College National Alumni Association will honor its retired chaplain and his wife, an alumnus who is an award-winning journalist, and the Hub City Writers Project of Spartanburg during Homecoming Weekend 2005 activities, Oct. 7-9.

Being honored with the Alumni Distinguished Service Award are Dr. Talmage Skinner (Wofford Class of 1956), Perkins-Prothro Chaplain at Wofford from 1986 until his retirement in 2003, and his wife, Beverly; with the Young Alumnus of the Year Award is journalist and essayist James Scott (Class of 1997), a staff writer for the Charleston, S.C., Post and Courier; and with the Distinguished Citizen Award is the Hub City Writers Project, started by Spartanburg journalists Betsy Teter and , Wofford faculty member John Lane (Class of 1977), and photographer and graphic artist Mark Olencki (Class of 1975).

During Homecoming Weekend 2005, Wofford will emphasize its partnership with the Spartanburg community, taking its celebration downtown for the third year for reunions at local restaurants and pep rally and street party on Magnolia Street.

“Classes Without Quizzes: Wofford’s Mini Alumni College” again will offer alumni the opportunity to explore a variety of topics with the college’s staff and faculty.

“The central city restaurants have proven to be perfect for our class reunions, and we’re expanding our street party to include two bands in two locations, to satisfy the musical tastes of a wider audience,” says Debbi Thompson, director of special alumni projects. “Our ‘Classes Without Quizzes’ offers a lot of fun opportunities for alumni to reconnect with their ‘college days’ while learning something new and interesting.”

Homecoming Weekend opens with the “Classes Without Quizzes,” to be held from 2 to 5 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 7, in various locations on campus. (See list below for topics.) Private reunions will be held on Friday evening in restaurants and other venues in downtown Spartanburg. The Wofford-only pep rally and street party will be held from 8:30 to 11:30 p.m. at the Extended Stay America Plaza on Magnolia Street.

Saturday’s activities will include the Homecoming 5K Race; the Wofford Alumni Executive Council Meeting; Academic Reception; National Alumni Association Service Awards; a book signing near Ben Wofford Books featuring Wofford faculty, staff and alumni; and a campus picnic before the 1:30 p.m. football game vs. Elon University in Gibbs Stadium.

Following the football game, the annual Terrier Ball will be held from 7 p.m. to midnight in Benjamin Johnson Arena, featuring food, entertainment, and live and silent auctions. Tickets to the event are available for $50; call 597-4090. All proceeds go to support scholarships for Wofford student-athletes.

Here is a full schedule of Homecoming Weekend 2005:

Friday, Oct. 7
8:30 a.m. to noon – Registration and ticket pickup for registered participants, Alumni Office, Papadopoulos Building. Tickets also can be picked up at the first event a registered participant attends.

2-5 p.m. – Classes Without Quizzes: Wofford’s Mini Alumni College (open to alumni only)
• “The Digital Darkroom” with Dr. Joe Sloan and Dr. Dave Whisnant
• “Highway 61 Revisited: Bob Dylan’s Chronicles” with Dr. A.K. Anderson (2-3:20 p.m.)
• “Sandburg’s Wish” with Dr. Jhon Akers (3:30-5 p.m.)
• “The Seven Deadly Sins: A Beginner’s Guide” with Dr. A.K. Anderson (3:30-5 p.m.)
• “Are We Right About Rights? Human Rights in a Global Perspective” with Dr. Susan Griswold and Dr. Jim Keller (3:30-5 p.m.)
• “Pain: The Science of Suffering” with Dr. John Lefebvre (3:30-5 p.m.)
• “Does Taste Play a Role in Obesity?” with Dr. Dave Pittman (3:30-5 p.m.)
• “Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything” with Dr. John McArthur (3:30-5 p.m.)

4 p.m. – Men’s Soccer vs. College of Charleston, Snyder Field

5:30-6:30 p.m. – Soccer Alumni Reception, Snyder Field. Contact April Williams, 597-4496 or

6-9 p.m. – 50 Year Club Reunion, The Piedmont Club. (Open to members only.)

6:30-8:30 p.m. – Reunions for members of various classes at various Spartanburg downtown restaurants and other venues. (Open only to class members and their guests.)

7 p.m. – Women’s Soccer vs. UNC Greensboro, Snyder Field

8:30-11:30 p.m. – Street Party and Pep Rally, Magnolia Street between Dunbar and St. John streets. ($10 at door, ID required.)

Saturday, Oct. 8
8 a.m. – Homecoming 5K Race, front of Main Building. ($15/person)

8-10:30 a.m. – Alumni Executive Council Meeting, Montgomery Room, Burwell Building. (Open to members only).

10-11:30 a.m. – Academic Drop-In Reception, Acorn Café and Great Oaks Hall, Roger Milliken Science Center. (Open to the public.)

10:30 a.m.-1 p.m. – Book signing featuring Wofford alumni, faculty and staff authors, Ben Wofford Books. Participating authors include Jhon Akers, Candy Arrington (Class of 1978), William E. DeMars, Ed Hall, A.V. Huff (Class of 1959), Bernard Kearse (Class of 1972), John Lane (Class of 1977), Betsy Teter, Byron McCane, Larry McGehee, Peter Murray (Class of 1975), J. Paul Poston (Class of 1953), Doug Rayner, Tracy Revels, Anne Rodrick, Rosa Shand and Jack Seitz. (Open to the public.)

11-11:30 a.m. – National Alumni Association Service Awards Presentation, Papadopoulos Building. (Open to the public.)

11 a.m.-1:15 p.m. – Lunch on the lawn of Main Building, featuring music, face painting, kids’ activities. $15/adult, $8/child. (Open to Wofford community only.)

1:30 p.m. – Kickoff, Terriers vs. Elon University football game, Gibbs Stadium. $20/adults, $10/children 3-12. Tickets, call 597-4090.

4-5:30 p.m. – Book signing continues, Ben Wofford Books.

5-6 p.m. – Association of Multicultural Affairs Reception, The Commons, The Raines Center. Contact Darrin Goss, 597-4043 or

6:30 p.m. – Fraternity Receptions. (Open to members and alumni only.)

7 p.m. – Terrier Ball, Benjamin Johnson Arena, with music, food, silent and live auctions. Tickets $50/person. Call 597-4090. (Open to the public.)

Sunday, Oct. 9
9:30-11 a.m. – Reunion for Presidential Seminar Students, President’s Home. (Open to Presidential Seminar alumni only.)

11 a.m. – Homecoming Worship Service, McMillan Theater, The Raines Center. (Open to the public.)

For information on Homecoming Weekend 2005 activities, contact Debbi Thompson at 597-4208 or, or visit


Dr. Talmage Skinner
and his wife, Beverly, will share the Alumni Distinguished Service Award. Skinner served as the Perkins-Prothro Chaplain at Wofford from 1986 until his retirement in 2003. During his tenure, Skinner established an important and effective “ministry of presence” on the campus. He worked with denominational religious fellowships and student volunteer services. He and his wife also were counselors and friends to a generation of students. He has officiated at almost 80 weddings involving members of the Wofford family. Over his lifetime in the United Methodist ministry, Skinner has been pastor of local congregations in South Carolina and Tennessee, and served for 10 years as chaplain and instructor at Spartanburg Methodist College.

James Scott, a native of Charlotte, N.C., will be named the Young Alumnus of the Year. Scott majored in English and Spanish at Wofford, receiving the Walter E. Hudgins Award at graduation. Holocene Publishing recently published the journal he kept of his experiences as an undergraduate studying in Spain, titled “The Other Side of Home.” Scott is a staff writer for the Charleston (S.C.) Post and Courier. He was honored as the South Carolina Press Association Journalist of the Year in 2003, reflecting his work on a series of important stories, including articles about the Noisette development project, the death of U.S. Sen. Strom Thurmond, and financial irregularities at the Good Samaritan Mission. He also provided readers with in-depth coverage of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2002, he married Carmen Elizabeth Sessions. They live in Charleston.

Receiving the Distinguished Citizen Award will be the Hub City Writers Project. In May 1995, Spartanburg journalists Betsy Teter and Gary Henderson; Wofford faculty member John Lane (Class of 1977); and photographer and graphic artist Mark Olencki (Class of 1975) founded the Hub City Writers Project. They began to marshal the talents of writers across South Carolina to create a remarkable series of 23 books characterized by a strong sense of place. The program has grown to include 170 contributing writers and now attracts major financial support from hundreds of South Carolina residents and businesses. In May 2002, the Hub City Writers Project received the Governor’s Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Award for outstanding contribution to the arts in South Carolina. It has become a national benchmark for communities seeking the nurture place-based literature. Wofford College collaborated with the Hub City Writers Project for the publication of the college’s sesquicentennial history, scheduled for release later this fall.