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Stitching memories together

| Jan Adams

Wearing a UW-Eau Claire College of Nursing and Health Sciences t-shirt has been part of the Blugold tradition at annual Nursing Alumni Homecoming Walks since the fall of 2000.  The first Nursing Alumni Walk was held in the fall of 2000; and after missing 2001, the walk has occurred during every homecoming weekend since.

Vicki Vogler, who was a clinical instructor, UW-Eau Claire nursing alum (BSN ‘76, MSN ‘98), and regular walk attendee has saved 14 years of nursing t-shirts.  Looking for a means to recognize the UW-Eau Claire Nursing Programs and repurpose her t-shirt collection, Vicki decided to create a commemorative t-shirt quilt and donate it to the College.

To begin the project, Vicki contacted Ms. Jane Jaenke, a quilt instructor, for assistance.  Ms. Janke spent a day with Vicki in August 2015, advising her on how to design the quilt.  Vicki then proceeded to do all the cutting and sewing of the various pieces. Once that task was completed, she contacted another expert quilter, Ms. Mary Traaseth, who bound the quilt layers together through “circular” sewing.

The result, unveiled during the 2015 Nursing Alumni Walk and 50th anniversary of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences, now hangs outside a classroom on the first floor of the nursing building.  The quilt  is beautiful remembrance of past walks, where alumni have opportunities to reconnect with old friends and faculty, see the old and the new on campus, and create new Blugold memories.