Global thirty year 10/10 journey concludes

Above: Members of the class of 1987 ten years into their journey.

MAC FIELD – As fall break approaches, we would like to acknowledge one of the most exciting events of the first semester – Fall Fest. This year, Fall Fest was especially exciting as students received the opportunity to participate in pumpkin painting, self-gov, and henna drawing, as well as the chance to connect with a unique and accomplished group of Grinnell alumni.

In a surprising turn of events Saturday evening, fifty members of the class of 1987 returned from their thirty year 10/10 journey. This experience was planned and led by George Matthews ‘87.

Matthews said, “Thirty years ago I dreamt of a Grinnell trip where self-gov could sustain the members of my class, through the spirit of 10/10, on a thirty-year international exploration of the world. I am humbled to say my dream was realized, although I can’t quite remember the details.”

He led the determined group of students from house to house on October 10, 1987 and then kept heading West. While some of the houses were separated by miles of corn fields, the group remained sustained by a couple of rescue dogs who came along with water, fruit snacks, ginger ale, and Take Outs from the dining hall. They continued across the country, stopping at Mount Rushmore to commemorate the journey and share a drink with the famous historical figures, while also feeling vaguely guilty and conflicted about commemorating them but at the same time doing nothing about it.

When they reached California, the class remembered the ocean existed and momentarily began to worry about beginning actual careers. However being resourceful Grinnell students equipped with essay writing and critical thinking skills, they tied together empty bottles and the bandanas of the rescue dogs and floated across the Pacific. They journeyed through Asia and Europe, earning some credits, but none that counted towards any of their majors. Finally, yearning for the frigid cold and endless cornfields of Iowa, the group returned to campus.

As the clock struck 10:10, members of the class of 1987 burst through the fence surrounding Mac field, determined to take a shot at the appropriate time and place.

Despite thirty years of accumulated changes, the returnees still felt right at home.

“We were thrilled to see that self-gov isn’t dead,” commented Kelly Choi ‘87, “I can’t think of a purer expression of self-gov than continuing to celebrate 10/10 off campus despite all the task forces and food trucks the administration could throw at the student body.”