The campus of La Roche College in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, was buzzing with activity yesterday as genealogists from across the country arrived for the opening day of the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP). After greeting friends in the parking lot, I received my dorm room assignment, name tag, course binder, and GRIP polo shirt in short order. The dorm room itself was basic but surprising spacious, with a private bathroom, a mini-fridge, and microwave. We even got chocolates on our pillows. This will be home base for the next five days.
La Roche is a small campus, and our classrooms and cafeteria are all in one big building next to the dorm. I have a feeling I’ll really appreciate that as the week goes on, especially in the mornings. Dinner brought everyone together, with lively conversation all around. I enjoyed talking with Becky Wiseman of Kinexxions, and was delighted to meet Denise Levenick, aka The Family Curator.
|Denise Levenick and Becky Wiseman
After dinner, directors Elissa Scalise Powell, CG, CGL, and Deborah Litchner Deal welcomed us all to the first session of GRIP. They announced that plans are already in place for six courses for July 2013 (to be announced later), and handed out door prizes to a few lucky attendees. Then we had an informal gathering of ProGen Study Group members. We have a large group here, with members ranging from ProGen 1 to 16 (I’m an alumnus of ProGen 5).
|GRIP Directors Deborah Deal and Elissa Scalise Powell
Since we didn’t have to worry about homework just yet, Malissa Ruffner of Family Epic and I ran out to do a little shopping at Target to outfit our dorm rooms in style. Mine now sports a cute little rug, a cushy bathmat, and a full fridge. We were a little disappointed not to find any posters for the walls. After all, it’s not every day we get to go back to college!