PROFlympics: Homecoming 2016 offers winning activities for students, alumni, friends

PROFlympics: Homecoming 2016 offers winning activities for students, alumni, friends


Walter Burgin is there in the photograph above the southside entrance of the Barnes & Noble on Rowan Boulevard, attending a Rowan University homecoming with his son David; daughter-in-law Lisa; and grandkids Brighid, Gunnar and Pierce, painted in the colors of the day.

“The highlight of Homecoming is all about family,” said David Burgin ’82 B.A. Communications, ’02 M Public Relations, whose father attended homecoming with his offspring every year. “Nothing is better than a fall day of family, football and food. Just add the extended family of Glassboro State/Rowan University classmates, Profs and University leadership, and you have one amazing day.”

His dad may be gone, but Sewell resident Burgin, past president of the Rowan Alumni Board and present member of the Rowan Foundation Board, will be at Homecoming 2016 – his 39th – with his wife; daughter; son-in-law, Erik Hoempler; and youngest son, Pierce.

This year, they – and an anticipated 2,000+ alumni of all generations, along with kids, grandkids and friends – will enjoy PROFlympics.

PROFlympics runs Monday, Oct. 3, through Sunday, Oct. 9, and includes activities, fun, food and more.

The offices of Alumni Engagement and Student Activities coordinate Homecoming.

Dana Benjamin, program assistant in Alumni Engagement said of the weekend, “It instills pride in our alumni. They get to reminisce and reconnect. People are happy to see their old friends. They are happy to bring their children back to campus. Some have students exploring college, and they get to check out what Rowan has to offer.”

Melissa Ulmer, assistant director of Student Activities for Special Events & Marketing, added, “Each year Homecoming planning starts almost as quickly as the year before it ends. The Homecoming Committee is composed of more than 45 representatives from across the institution that represent more than 20 departments. Our committee meets monthly to discuss event details and how we’re going to work together to make the week of events and activities better than the last. In addition to the planning, each Homecoming would not be as successful as it is without the help from our faculty, staff and student volunteers. Throughout the week, Homecoming sees more than 100 volunteers who are all working hard to make sure each event or competition runs smoothly, as well as sharing their Prof pride.”

Brighid Burgin Hoempler ’12 B.S. Chemical Engineering, of Glassboro, is marking her 26th Homecoming, give or take a year or two – meaning she’s attended Homecoming virtually every year of her life.

Hoempler, a member of the Rowan Alumni Board of Directors and the Henry M. Rowan College of Engineering Advisory Council, said, “For me, Homecoming is a family affair. I’ve been cheering for the Profs since birth, and I have many fond memories of football, face painting, the pep band, parades and my new personal favorite – the beer garden! In fact, one of my oldest memories is watching the cheerleaders on the intramural field with old desks burning in the background, when we used to have bonfires. So much has changed since then, but one thing remains the same – Homecoming is a must-experience Burgin family fall tradition."

Among this year’s highlights are:


1 p.m.:                   Diamond Club Golf Tournament, Scotland Run Golf Club

5 p.m.:                   Homecoming Block Party, Hollybush Green, Whitney Avenue.


10 a.m.:                 Homecoming Parade, Parade leaves from Rowan Boulevard; performances and skits will be in Parking Lot D on campus

11 a.m. – 2 p.m.:   Homecoming Tailgate, Parking Lot C, Wackar Stadium

11 a.m. – 2 p.m.:   College Corner, Bowe Boulevard and Carpenter Street

11 a.m. – 2 p.m.:   Alumni Tent, Athletics Tent and Beer Garden, Parking Lot C, Wackar Stadium (Registration for the Alumni tent has been extended to Sept. 23. Alums may bring one guest to this free event). The Athletics Tent offers special treats for alumni who have represented Rowan on/in the field, court, pools and elsewhere. The beer garden, complete with a Gourmet Dining food truck, is cash only. Liberty Mutual and TD Bank sponsor the alumni components of Homecoming on Saturday (alumni tent, beer garden and College Corner).

2 p.m.:                   Homecoming Football Game against Salisbury University, Wackar Stadium. Homecoming winners will be announced at halftime.

7 p.m.:                   The Show, the 33rd annual Step Show, Pfleeger Concert Hall, Wilson Hall

Throughout the day

                               Class of 1966 50th Reunion / Visit for a list of activities.


11 a.m.:                 Athletics Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, Eynon Ballroom, Chamberlain Student Center

Friday – Sunday

Throughout the weekend  

                              Black Alumni & Friends Reunion / The group is planning a weekend of events. Visit for a list of activities.

For complete information about PROFlympics, visit