Tell us about it!
Have you recently held a reunion? We would love to share your experience to inspire fellow alumni to organise their own reunions. Contact us if you have pictures and stories you would like to share.
Some of our alumni have already shared their stories with us...
- Dr Jenny and Murdoch Shirreffs, Medical Class of 1964-70
"The Aberdeen University Medical Class of 1964 didn’t fully realise the implications of the new curriculum being introduced that year.
Some 130 youthful souls began their studies as unwitting guinea pigs and proceeded to the joys of learning Anatomy inter alia in the following academic year.
Prior to this, medical students had several chances to pass this subject and re-sits were common; under the new regulations, it was one re-sit only and then you were out – and out they went in their droves! As a result only some 68 of the original class graduated in 1970, but these survivors spent a total of six years living in each other’s pockets as their studies progressed, and close bonds and life-long friendships were established during this time.
On graduation, the Class vowed to keep in touch and, as we were to be based in Aberdeen, we volunteered to facilitate this for as long as possible. Forty years later, we are still in touch with virtually all the surviving Class members and organise regular Reunions to which at least two thirds of the Class come every time."
- Dr Bill Todd, Medical Class of 1938-43
A war-time medical class, which has come together regularly for the last seven decades, celebrated its last official reunion in September 2014.
The reunion of the 1943 medics is the longest-running reunion at the University of Aberdeen and in its heyday former students travelled from all corners of the globe to attend.
Organiser Bill Todd credits the closeness of the friendships formed by the students, who studied between 1938 and 1943, to the extra burdens imposed by the war.
“It wasn’t an easy time to be a student but we knew we were much better off than the general population and we were grateful for that,” he said.
“Because of the war, we were all members of the OTC and performed many duties together. We suffered the hardships of rationing and the lack of food together and it gave us a sense of unity."
“We were also very aware that if we failed any of our exams, we would be drafted into the services so it was a real incentive to study hard and make sure you got through."
“All this meant we had to provide support to one another and as a result we got to know one another very well."
“Fortunately that year group was full of lots of nice people and it has been an honour to know them over the years.”
Around 100 students graduated in medicine in 1943, including 20 women, and the first reunion was held on 1948. After this, the group met every five years until the mid-1990s when it was decided the reunion should become an annual event.
In their heyday, the reunions were regularly attended by up to 80 members of the class, with many travelling from as far afield as New Zealand and Canada.
Bill said the University’s alumni relations team had provided tremendous support in keeping the event running for so many years.
“Without the help provided by the University, and the Aberdeen Treetops hotel which has hosted our reunions, we’d never have managed to keep going for so long. We have had a fabulous time meeting up but we are now in our nineties and we felt that this year should probably be our last, although we will continue to keep in touch in other ways.”
- Denise McKay and Iain Nicol, DLP Class of 1989-90
The Aberdeen University Diploma of Legal Practice 1989-90 class held its 25th reunion on the 6th of June this year. As a part of the anniversary celebrations they have also created a video clip to capture their trip down Memory Lane: