I recently received great news: Peri, the daughter and granddaughter of our dear friends Mo and Lark, has recently been accepted to Bard College. She’ll begin classes there this fall, and we are all delighted. Congratulations are in order for Mom, Lark, and certainly for Peri. A lot of collective effort went into the realization of this great opportunity.
I’d like to attribute Peri’s success to her devotion to every word and comma that appear in my book Old Money, New Woman: How To Manage Your Money and Your Life, but that would be a stretch. Being accepted into a prestigious institution like Bard is a the result of a lifetime of discipline and no small amount of determination.
Good for you, Peri.
And if any of our readers aren’t familiar with Bard, let me give you a brief overview of the college and its history.
Bard College is a small (2600 students or so) liberal arts college located in the Hudson River Valley of New York state. It was founded in 1860, and its campus has grown, amoeba-like, through the decades. Over time, the school has acquired neighboring country estates, crowned with ‘stately Wayne Manor’-like mansions, while at the same time constructing newly built, postmodern architectural buildings on campus. The two styles would be jarring if it weren’t for the lush, beautiful setting they share.
Of course, the school has a strong list of illustrious alumni and faculty, including numerous celebrities. Who cares? What I noticed was that several well-known songwriters seem to have sprung forth from its ranks, including the founding members of Steely Dan, the writer of Madonna’s “Like a Virgin”, the Sherman brothers, who wrote, among other iconic movie tunes, “It’s a Small World After All,” and one of the Beastie Boys. Who knew?
Faculty have included the likes of Toni Morrison and Arthur Penn, to name but two notables.
Even more interesting is the Bard Prison Initiative. If you have Netflix or enjoy PBS, you should watch College Behind Bars, a documentary series about the Bard’s efforts to educate incarcerated men and women in New York state. It is excellent. It is inspiring. It is heartbreaking. Above all, it is a vivid, real-time testament to the transformative power of education.
That said, our hearts still circle back to Bard’s newest and soon-to-be most noteworthy undergraduate, Peri. All those late night preparations for the SAT with your mom have paid off. All those hopes and dreams you talked about with your grandmother are now becoming a reality.
Irony alert: the hard work has just begun. Ha.
Congratulations again. Enjoy the accomplishment, but get ready: September will be here before you know it.