Maize & Blue Daize tradition expands for 2024

New events and campus partnerships distinguish the third-annual week of Carleton pride and philanthropy.

Abigail Tupa 4 April 2024 Posted In:
Close-up on the Maize & Blue Daize banner attached to the columns of Sayles-Hill Campus Center.

Campus has donned its maize and blue banners in preparation for Carleton’s third-annual Maize & Blue Daize happening April 4–10. 

Inspired by the lyrics of “O Carleton, Our Alma Mater,” Maize & Blue Daize is a week for students, faculty, staff, alumni, and families to show pride for the Carleton community and learn about the network of support that makes the Carleton experience possible. 

While Maize & Blue Daize started as a partnership between Carleton’s Alumni Relations Office and Annual Fund Office, this year’s event boasts an expanded lineup of events, activities, and challenges sponsored by 16 offices across the College. New partnerships include a Senior Showcase supported by the campus events team; Beating the Blues with SWA Dog Maisy in the Office of Health Promotion; a Maize & Blue Well-being Challenge designed by Anna Grove ’21 and Recreation Center staff; a Maize Out at the Knights softball game organized by varsity athletics; and professional headshots led by the Career Center.

“Strengthening campus involvement was a core goal of Maize & Blue Daize this year,” Director of Alumni Relations Michael Thompson ’96 said. “We hope to illustrate the breadth of resources available to students while they’re on campus, and further, to underscore how alumni and families are involved in each one.”

The Carleton Student Ambassadors play a vital role in planning and executing these Maize & Blue Daize efforts, particularly when it comes to philanthropy education.

“Maize & Blue Daize would not be possible without the ideas and involvement of the Student Ambassadors,” Director of the Alumni Annual Fund Anita Fisher Egge ’94 said. “The Ambassadors can inform and influence fellow students in ways staff or faculty cannot. The peer-to-peer structure is foundational to our alumni volunteer programs, so it’s fitting that the Student Ambassadors model it now.”

One project the Student Ambassadors hope their peers appreciate is a garden of hundreds of handmade flowers — each with a note from a donor at the center. More than 150 alumni, parents, and friends returned postcards to share their Because of Carleton stories with current students.

Katie Claiborne ’13 is among the respondents who feels Carleton helped her hone life-long skills.

“Because of Carleton, I feel confident practicing the quiet leadership that comes most naturally to me,” Claiborne wrote. “I’ve learned that leading through excellence, humility, and respect is rewarded, even if it takes longer than being the loudest person in the room.” 

In addition to sharing their stories, alumni and families can join the Maize & Blue Daize momentum in a variety of ways. Solving the Carls Crossword created by New York Times-published Billy Bratton ’25; attending one of the 50 Coffee with Carls gatherings happening across the globe on Saturday, April 6; and helping the Annual Fund reach 1866 donors in the Maize & Blue Daize 2024 fundraising challenge are ways to participate regardless of location.

Those within driving distance of campus are invited to close out the week with a special Alumni/Student Mixer in Great Hall on Wednesday, April 10. The event will provide opportunities to connect with campus leadership and current students alike.

“We’re excited to end Maize & Blue Daize with an event that merges the student and alumni experience,” Thompson said. “Acknowledging the community-wide effort of a Carleton education is what Maize & Blue Daize is truly all about.”