Skip to main content


Bentley alumni celebrating 50+ Reunions pose for a photo in regalia with the Bentley Library in the background

Bentley alumni returned to campus to celebrate reunions, including the 50th Reunion for the Class of 1974 and the 60th Reunion for the Class of 1964. Members of the Blue and Gold Society — all alumni who graduated 50 years ago or more — also joined in the celebration and welcomed those from the Class of 1974 to their ranks.

At class dinners, attendees shared memories of their Bentley days, marveling at archival images and yearbooks, and telling stories over their own pictures that they shared. Three dozen brandy glasses left over from the Class of 1974 class prom during senior week were among the memorabilia, packed away with care all these years later thanks to Class President Edie (Chadwick) Blackney ’74.

Blackney addressed her classmates over dinner about how Bentley has transformed — from athletics facilities and varsity sports to dormitories and degree offerings. Her memories of the times, like being one of only a few women living on campus, Title IX, Ralph Nader on campus, streakers and the annual banana eating contest were met with familiar nods or chuckles. 

Banana Eating Contest archival image and sign
Scenes from the Banana Eating Contest, circa 1973-1974. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Archives.
Photo of Edie Blackney smiling and wearing a Blue and Gold Society straw hat
I am filled with a profound sense of nostalgia and gratitude for the journey that has brought us here to our 50th Reunion. I only wish more classmates could be here with us to celebrate this milestone!
Edie (Chadwick) Blackney ’74
Class President

Professor Emeritus of Management and Psychology Aaron J. Nurick, PhD addressed those celebrating five decades since graduating. He recognized that the alumni sitting in that very room were some of the first on the Waltham campus: “You, Class of 1974, carved many of the paths we walk along to this day.”

He reminded the group about life 50 years ago: Watergate was the major news story; inflation was 11%; gas was 55 cents a gallon; you passed a note in class to send a friend a message; you put coins in a payphone to call home; faculty and staff sent memos; streaking was a popular activity on college campuses; and fittingly the Billboard #1 hit this very week five decades ago was none other than The Streak by Ray Stevens.

Saturday morning was ripe with excitement as reunion alumni marched alongside the Class of 2024 during the Commencement ceremony. The weather was reminiscent of their graduation day 50 years ago, though the rain held off this time! They were proud to be recognized in the address delivered by Chair of the Board of Trustees Paul Condrin ’83, which was greeted with much applause. Condrin encouraged the Class of 2024 come back in 50 years so they too could be honored during the Commencement exercises.

The Class of 2024 Graduation Marks Culmination of a Historic Four Years

After walking down memory lane at Commencement, alumni got to see what’s new on campus with a brief trolley tour of campus, admiring the Bentley Arena and commenting on how things were when they were students. Many observed how Lower Campus looks a lot different these days!

The festivities closed with a clambake celebration with all the fixings, including potatoes, sausages, corn, clams, and, of course, lobsters.

No Reunion for those that graduated 50 years ago or more would be complete without bestowing the coveted straw hats. With that, Robert Chicoski ’64 officially welcomed the Class of 1974 into the Blue and Gold Society. “You are the pioneers!” Chicoski exclaimed. “That is your legacy to carry forward as you are inducted into this special group.”

Great Benefactors William C. ’74 and Angela C. (Weber) ’74 Freda smiling at the camera
Great Benefactors William C. ’74 and Angela C. (Weber) ’74 Freda at their 50th Reunion.

As classmates and friends said farewell, they couldn’t help but reflect on how special Bentley Reunion is. Trustee Emeritus and Great Benefactor Bill Freda ’74, who shared this milestone with his wife Angela (Weber) ’74, expressed his gratitude: “Bentley not only provided me with a great foundation to begin a career in business, it is also where I met my wife and best man. Fifty years later, we are celebrating our lifelong relationship together this weekend. I am forever grateful.”

Bentley University wouldn’t be the institution it is without its alumni, and we love to celebrate milestone reunions. In the fall, during Falcon Weekend, reunions will take place for classes that graduated 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40 and 45 years ago. Learn more about Reunions at Falcon Weekend