I was reminded about the magic of Barnard last month when I attended a holiday BENet event at a wonderful restaurant in Harlem, Vinateria, owned by Yvette Leeper-Bueno ’90. It was a perfect evening filled with energy, wide-ranging discussions, and great food. Once again I experienced the power of the Barnard connection and the bonds that we share. Although I went by myself, I never felt alone. I struck up a conversation with two alumnae who have been friends since they transferred to Barnard in the early ’70s. Both women were trailblazers in their fields of fashion and neuropsychology. Despite their close friendship, I immediately felt a connection as we shared stories about our personal and professional lives and our interests. For one December night, Vinateria became a gathering place for intelligent Barnard women to celebrate the holiday season, make new friendships, and support each other in our personal and professional endeavors. I hope alumnae in other regions will consider getting together over a meal. It is a fun way to connect, network, and build an extended Barnard community.

If you are looking for a cure for the winter doldrums, I hope you will consider attending the seventh annual Global Symposium, which will be held on campus this year on Friday, March 13, as a highlight of our yearlong celebration of Barnard’s 125th anniversary. It will bring together speakers from the six prior Global Symposiums held in Beijing, Dubai, Johannesburg, Mumbai, São Paulo, and Shanghai to engage in conversation with one another and with some of their distinguished counterparts from the United States. The participants are leaders in their fields—from activism, the arts, and academia to the economy, media, and politics—and will share their views about the distinct opportunities and challenges for women leaders in different regions of the world. Participants include: Wu Qing, professor, activist, and a leader in the field of Chinese women’s rights and the rule of law in China; Panmela Castro, founder and president of an organization that uses street art to raise awareness of gender-based violence and to promote women’s rights; and distinguished Barnard alumna Helene Gayle ’76, president and CEO of CARE USA. We plan on sharing content from the symposium with all alumnae.

Barnard is a place and it is also a common bond that we share, whether we are on campus or connecting at an event in Israel, London, Los Angeles, or Miami. Barnard is the place to attend the Athena Film Festival or Reunion. It is also a place in our hearts, and one that is there to serve alumnae regionally, virtually, and in New York City. Barnard is for all alumnae who choose to connect in any way they want.

—Terry S. Newman ’79