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Adee Bennett '33 turns 100!
3/18/10

Adee Bennett, who turned 100 March 4, hasn’t missed a beat since she graduated magna cum laude in 1933.

Adee’s husband Philip, class of 1936, was an engineer. They met at Alfred when they were both students. They were both from Long Island, and just like today, students often shared rides to go home for holidays or vacations. She and Philip met because they shared a ride with the same person.

Adee has fond memories of Alfred. She majored in languages and literature – she was proficient/ fluent in Latin, Greek, Spanish, and French. She remembers Professor G. Stewart Nease most vividly, a classics professor. He was an older professor, and not always well. So when he couldn’t teach class she would stand in for him. She would even help him host parties at his home.

Adee had a scholarship at Alfred and was working at the same time because her family on Long Island had no money. She worked in the dining hall at first, but then she decided she was just too small to carry the big trays so she switched to tutoring languages.

She says Alfred was a great place to build confidence because of the small size, supportive professors, and close relationship with the professors.

Adee remembers the fire in the Brick. It was quite a big deal in town, trying to find places for about 100 girls to stay for the rest of the semester. Adee and one other person lived on the top floor of Mrs. Greene’s home in the Village. She recalls that Mrs. Greene was a lovely and sweet person. Adee’s main memory of the fire, though, was how the mischievous male students took advantage of the situation. They went into the Brick rooms, tossed bras and panties from the balconies, and made general mischief. She was amused.

After graduating Alfred it was the depths of the Depression, and it was very hard to find a teaching job. She looked all over New York State, from Western New York to Long Island, and could not find anything. So she took a job at Lord & Taylor, commuting from Long Island to Manhattan every day.

She and Philip didn’t get married right away because they didn’t have enough money to get married.

Adee taught languages in the public schools in Tennessee, New York State, and elsewhere, as she and Philip moved around for his work. But they finally settled in New Jersey and she taught in Clark, NJ for many years. Addee celebrated at a birthday get-together with several other retired teachers.

Adee has two sons and one granddaughter.