Monday, June 26, 2006
Graduation, Carolyn's Retirement
There seems to be one tradition that Cave Canem will always celebrate at graduation time - the time when those who have completed three years as fellows are given their certificates, and told that they can no longer attend the week-long workshop. It is a tradition of tears, laughter, many hugs, and a wang dang doodle that lasts, as Koko Taylor would say. "alll night looong."
This was a year of many goodbyes. 24 graduates, and the departures of Kwame Dawes, and the retirement of our CC angel, Carolyn Micklem.
Carolyn got quite a few standing ovations as the evening went on. This is an era of transition for Cave Canem. Sarah said it best: Carolyn's departure marks the organization's shift from a kind of family business - as Carolyn is Cornelius' mother-in-law, and CC is the brain/sweatchild of Cornelius and Toi, and she wants and actively pursues the best for the CC folks - as if we were her grandchildren.
Sarah told of the times when she and her mother struggled over the right way to put together grant proposals late at night, how Carloyn guided the process and gave sage advice. Cornelius emphasized how we would not be sitting there without her constant and steady presence.
Carolyn got some great going away presents. The third years passed the hat, and established the Carolyn Micklem Scholarship Fund to help pay for future graduates. The CC board had been struck with the same idea - and so they also started a Carolyn fund! Together, there is now @ $1400 in the Carolyn Micklem Scholarship fund - enough for @ three fellows to atend next year.
Carolyn will also be flown to a vacation in Italy, to the place where Toi and Cornelius first got the idea for Cave Canem.
There was much testimony about Carolyn the other night. Please feel free to give your Carolyn Recollection here.
Carolyn, you know this is not goodbye - We will be in touch, and there will be many hugs at the CC reunion this October. Thank you, thank you, thank you for all you have done, Carolyn. We will never forget your steady shoulder at the wheel.