The Urban School Alumni Association BLUESNOTES
blues notes
October 21, 2016 facebook linkedIn twitter vimeo vimeo

Message from Alumni Council President Kate Jessup
It's hard to believe that our innovative upstart of a school is 50 years old, but the time does fly. Urban has always been a safe space for learning and heaven knows in the current political, economic and environmental climate, we need progressive education! That's why I hope you'll join us November 5 for the Alumni Reunion events of Urban's 50th Anniversary Celebration Weekend.

The festivities for all begin at 3 pm in the new Mark Salkind Center on Oak Street to break in the regulation-sized gym with a basketball round robin with food and drink for fans in the Student Commons next to the court. Then at 5 pm, we'll gather in the Alumni Blues Lounge for a ribbon cutting, followed by refreshments and wine, and a program including live music, the unveiling of an Urban timeline and more.

We want this to be a festive and leisurely afternoon of togetherness, Urban-style. Please join us! Partners and children welcome and you may come for as little or as much of the program as your schedule allows. Just RSVP here so we can order enough food—trust me, you'll want to sample the chef-made appetizers from the full-service kitchen in Urban's new building.

Alums are also welcome and encouraged to join our All-Community Celebration on Sunday, November 6. For information about Sunday's program and to RSVP see this link.

I look forward to seeing you on Saturday, November 5, Sunday, November 6, or both!

Kate Jessup, Class of '95
President, Urban Alumni Association

P.S. Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions.

Message from Aidan Coffino ('08)

Pictured: 2014-15 Farewell to St. Agnes Gym Round Robin Tournament Players

Recent completion of the new campus marks the genesis of a new era for Urban School. This transition, highlighted by the beautiful new Salkind Center Gym, comes with an opportunity for the alumni community to shepherd the Urban Blues!

While the current ensemble of Urban students takes its first steps into 1639 Oak, we want to welcome the alumni community to join the passage on a day of recognition, celebration and good ol’ friendly competition. We hope you can join us for the second annual Alumni Basketball Tournament, and the very first in the recently finished Salkind Center.

Urban alums and faculty members of all skill levels and experience are welcome to play, or spectate alongside family and friends. Food and drink will be provided in the new Student Commons area with views overlooking the court.

After the competition and a recognition for the winning team, Urban is hosting a reception and ribbon cutting of the Alumni Blues Lounge. All Urban alums and their guests are welcome to enjoy live music and delicious food and drinks. Click here for more details including information about parking and to register so we know how many people to expect!

Go Blues!

Aidan Coffino ('08)

Last June, we celebrated a very special milestone in the life of one of Urban School's most beloved teachers, LeRoy Votto — the last history class he will teach at Urban. Fittingly, it was Revolutionary History. LeRoy has transformed students' view of history into something they love and a fresh understanding that history matters since he came to Urban in 1980. He has engaged and inspired generations of Urban students, and for that we are forever grateful.

Fortunately for Urban, LeRoy's work continues as our Alumni Ambassador! On Saturday November 5, as part of our 50th Anniversary celebration, at approx 4:45 pm we are taking a few moments after the basketball tournament and before the reception to acknowlege this milestone. If you would like to contribute a message for LeRoy in the special book alums are presenting him, please click here. If you can't join us on Saturday, we know LeRoy would love to see you on Sunday. Please remember to RSVP if you are planning to attend.

Career Networking Reception
Urban, in partnership with The Bay School, Convent & Stuart Hall, Head-Royce, Lick-Wilmerding, Marin Academy, Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep and University High School, is participating in our second annual career networking event to be held on Wednesday, November 16, from 6 - 8:30 pm, at the Flood Mansion.

This year we are pleased to welcome Urban parent and former CEO of LinkedIn and Rocket Lawyer Dan Nye as our keynote speaker. Whether you're building your career or interested in exploring a new industry, we hope you will join us for wine, beer, hors d'oeuvres and conversation with a beautiful view of the bay.

Each participating school is allocated only 20 tickets for this event. Tickets, available for purchase by alums and their guests, are $20 per person if purchased by October 26, and $25 until registration closes on November 14.

Check in starts at 6 pm with keynote address beginning promptly at 6:30 pm; reception to follow. Valet parking available for $10.

To purchase tickets, please click here. We hope to see you there!

Alumni Holiday Party
All Urban Alums and their guests are invited to join us on Thursday, December 15, from 6:30 - 8:30 pm, for our fourth annual Alumni Holiday Happy Hour! This year's event will be held at Tofino Wines in its cavernous wine room, a unique and welcoming glass-enclosed space. Enjoy wine and nibbles with Urban friends old and new. Click here to RSVP.
SF Film Society Event on November 4
Urban Alum Kathleen Lingo (‘98), commissioning editor of The New York Times Opinion Video and executive producer of The New York Times' Op-Doc series, is in town next month for an SF Film Society Event at the Vogue Theater on Friday, November 4, at 6:30 pm. Kathleen will be speaking on a panel with the filmmakers at the event. The Op-Doc series is the Times editorial department’s award-winning section for short, opinionated documentaries covering current affairs, contemporary life and historical subjects. Click here for information about the films and to purchase tickets. We are delighted that Kathleen will staying in town so that she can participate in our alumni panel at our 50th Anniversary All-Community Celebration on Sunday, November 6.
Thank You Class of 1969!

Last week we were pleased to welcome Janice (Rodgers) Quinn ('69), Kat (Brinton) Crawford ('69) and Holly Badgley ('69) who, along with their classmates, have donated a beautiful bench designed by sculptor Terence Dubreuil to honor their class and the memories of their parents who took a chance at an education based on the love of learning and engagement with community. (Please note that Mark Salkind graduated a year later in 1970!)

We are excited to dedicate the space with members of Urban's first graduating class on November 5 as a kick-off to our 50th Anniversary celebration!

As our alums can testify, an Urban education is about more than what students learn today — it's about inspiring them to grow as thinkers and learners. It's thinking about and discussing the impact of a presidential debate on the coming election. It's anticipating the result of a science experiment and still meticulously completing the research. It's relating the ancient trials of Odysseus to our own successes, failures and victories. It's meeting challenges by asking questions. It's prioritizing community and making space for everyone. That's why our Annual Fund theme this year is Urban Forward.

The Annual Fund supports students and teachers as they actively engage in new processes of discovery and exploration every gift, regardless of size, ensures an outstanding education to each and every student whose life is transformed by Urban.

Please join us in looking Urban Forward to all our school can be. To make a gift to Urban's Annual Fund online, please click here. If you are a member of the Class of '09 - '16 and would like to make or renew a gift to your class fund, please click here. We are so grateful for the continued support of our exceptional alumni community. Thank you!

from the alumni council

Dear Urban Friends,

Hello from one of your newest alumni council members! My name is Emily (Volberding) Seip, and I graduated in '05, following in the footsteps of my older brothers, Alex ('99) and Ben ('02). I am so excited to have been asked to join the Alumni Council. I was a co-planner, along with my friend Eve Myers, of my class's 10th reunion last fall; I'm proud to still be involved with Urban years after graduating!

I was a Senior in the 2004-05 school year, while the finishing touches were being done to what we then considered the "new building" on Page Street. I loved visiting Urban after I graduated and seeing the school and its staff and students grow into the larger space, and I'm so excited that current students and alumni alike have another 'new building' to get to know. I hope to see many of you at the festivities on November 5th. I will be cheering on the basketball players from the sidelines and would love to see some friendly alumni faces during the tournament or at the reception thereafter! Let us know if you can make it so we can plan.

In addition to 50th Anniversary planning, this year the council is continuing to build networking opportunities for Urban students and alums with events like the April Career Visit Days for sophomores and the Building Your Network event with our peer schools on November 16. If you are intrested in being a part of or learning more about our alumni/student networking opportunities please email

Thank you and I hope to see you on November 5 and 6!

Emily Volberding Seip ('05)

from the alumni council

Urban's 50th Anniversary planning has given us a wonderful opportunity to connect and celebrate Urban's past, present and future. As part of those efforts we have been interviewing current and former faculty members about their time at Urban. Last month we were thrilled when Allan Ridley came by and shared stories about the early days of Cal Studies. We hope you can take a few moments to watch some of these interviews. We will be continuing to share videos from this project through March of this year! Stay tuned.
alumni events

Urban's 50th Anniversary All-Alumni Celebration
Saturday, November 5
The Mark Salkind Center
1639 Oak Street

3 – 5 pm
Basketball Round Robin Tournament in the new Sakind Center Gym

5 – 7 pm
All-Alumni Reception and Ribbon Cutting of the Alumni Blues Lounge

Click Here to RSVP!
50th Anniversary All-Community Celebration
Sunday, November 6
1 - 4 pm

Check-in begins at 1 pm at the 1563 Page Street Tent
1:30 pm Remarks and Opening Program

For more information and to RSVP click here.
Building Your Network
Wednesday, November 16
6 – 8:30 pm
The Flood Mansion

Purchase tickets here.
Alumni Holiday Happy Hour
Thursday, December 15
6:30 – 8:30 pm

Tofino Wines
2696 Geary Boulevard at Masonic

Recent Grad Reunion for the Classes of 2012 - 2016
Tuesday, January 3
3 – 4:30 pm
The Alumni Blues Lounge in The Mark Salkind Center
1639 Oak Street

Click Here to RSVP

Stay after the event to cheer on our basketball playing Blues!
student news
Fall Production Class Presents
Spring Awakening
November 9 – 12
7:30 pm
Page Campus Gumption Theater

Click here for ticket info
Peer Education Theater Performance
November 30 – December 2
7 pm
Page Campus Gumption Theater
Winter Music Concert
Sunday, December 11
5 pm
Herbst Theater
401 Van Ness Avenue
San Franciscor
photos and fun stuff
click here for pictures of recent events
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