Legacy Stories: Holly Pyper, '16

Holly, '16, and Lee Pyper, '81
Holly, '16, and Lee Pyper, '81

While Holly Pyper, '16, says she never felt pressure from her Albion College alumni parents to attend their alma mater, the exposure to all things Albion sure helped when it came time to make a decision.

Holly remembers visiting Albion as young as eight years old, together with her dad, Jay, '79, and mom, Lee, '81, during Homecoming and reunions.

"It's so funny to see campus now versus when I was 12," Holly says. "Back then, it all seemed so overwhelming. I didn't realize it, but eventually Albion started to feel like home."

Pressure from her grandfather, a University of Michigan alumnus, and her Michigan-bound high school friends, was there, however.

"Up north at my grandparents' house, it was a big battle in the family," Holly says. "But my parents said, 'You go where you fit best.'"

Finding Albion On Her Own

"It's no secret I always hoped that she would attend Albion," mother Lee Pyper, '81, says, "and enjoy it as much as I did!"

When it came to looking at colleges, Holly wanted a good business program and the opportunity to study Spanish. She looked at large and small schools.

But when she toured Albion, "it all just clicked," she says.

History Repeats Itself

Lee Pyper's experience was similar to her daughters. Her mother Helen Adler, '41, didn't pressure her either. It was the simple exposure to Albion stories that helped Lee make a decision.

Helen Adler, '41; Holly Pyper, '16; Lee Pyper, '81
Helen Adler, '41; Holly Pyper, '16; Lee Pyper, '81

"I knew I wanted a small school, and the stories my mom told of her college days always sounded so nice to me," she says. "I applied only to Albion, sight unseen, and the first time I saw the campus was when my parents dropped me off on day one of freshman year. I immediately felt at home."

Her best memories? All "the simple things": BACs (Big Albion Cookies), music in the Keller with friends, Little John's, Sunday pizza dinners from Cascarelli's, the Quad, Friday night movies at Norris, Alpha Chi Omega activities, "and of course meeting my husband," Lee says.

"Now we re-live our college experiences through Holly," Lee says.

Lee says that by the time Holly was a junior in high school, she was pretty sure that Albion was the place for her. Other schools didn't get what Holly calls the "preferred treatment."

"It was nice to have my parents' support for whatever it was I ended up doing," Holly says.

Albion's Legacy Story Continues

Jay, '79, Holly, '16, and Lee, '81, Pyper
Jay, '79, Holly, '16, and Lee, '81, Pyper

Now, as a tour guide, she talks to alumni who are bringing their children to campus for visits.

"They're still passionate about Albion, and happy to be back on campus," Holly says. "And they're thrilled to have their children considering Albion. It was neat to see it from an outside perspective."

And just like Holly, those students' immersion in Albion stories could bring them here, too.

"I was meant to be a Brit," Holly says.