Virtual Alumnae Weekend 2021

Thank you for joining us on March 12 & 13, 2021 for our online events!
Scroll down to view video interviews with our Distinguished Alumnae Award recipients, downloadable alumnae recipes, virtual classes, video tours of campus, and more.
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Celebrating Juanita Jimenez's
50th Year at Westridge

Juanita Jimenez

Join us in honoring Ceramics Teacher Juanita Jimenez, who will retire in June 2021 after 50 remarkable years at Westridge! When she arrived at Westridge in 1971, Juanita Jimenez (then Muñoz) thought she would be here for one year, but her love of her students, the art, and the community kept her coming back. Juanita’s first ceramic class was held in a garage with a single potter’s wheel and a hole in the ground for clean-up. The ceramics program expanded quickly under her guidance—aided by her tendency to recruit any students she found on campus with a free period to enroll in her class. After only two years, the program outgrew the garage and moved into Pitcairn House. In 1978, a dedicated ceramics studio, the Laurie ’68 and Susan ’71 Frank Art Studio, was constructed.

Juanita holds a special place in the hearts of so many students and alumnae who learned not only how to throw a pot from her, but also to trust in themselves, explore their own creative abilities, and to have patience and appreciate process. 

Honoring Distinguished Westridge Alumnae

Each year Distinguished Alumnae are nominated by fellow alumnae to be honored at Alumnae Weekend. The first recipients were chosen in 1988 and were two members of the Westridge student body from its founding in 1913. Today, two alumnae are selected—the Mary Lowther Ranney Distinguished Alumna Award Recipient and the Distinguished Young Alumna Award Recipient. These alumnae embody the spirit of the Westridge motto Surgere Tentamus, have made meaningful impact in their community and notable strides in their chosen fields, and are an inspiration to the Westridge community. Learn more about these awards here.

2021 Mary Lowther Ranney Award Recipient
Jossalyn Turner Emslie ’83

Jossalyn Turner Emslie ’83 is a primary care physician working primarily with underserved and needy populations, intent on providing her patients with the best quality care they don’t have the means to obtain. She volunteers and mentors youth via the League for Crippled Children at Orthopaedic Hospital, a health organization for children from poor, uninsured, or undocumented backgrounds. 

Following Westridge, Jossalyn earned a B.A. in English literature at the University of California, Los Angeles; M.S. in biology with emphasis in California ecology at California State University, Los Angeles; and M.D. at the University of Southern California. Jossalyn holds interests in a myriad of subjects including reading, writing, and language, as well as co-running the Westridge Alumnae Readers' Book Club. She maintains numerous outdoor pursuits, such as hiking, camping, backpacking, orienteering, ecosystems, and preserving nature. Other interests include history, math, science, art, philosophy, antiquity, performing arts, music, museums, handwork crafts, and woodworking. If she’s not learning, she’s making.

With two daughters who attended Westridge, Caitlin ’12 and Maddie ’16, Jossalyn became a valued mentor and influential leader with Girl Scouts for 16 years, and helped develop a high performance rocketry program at Westridge. She remains passionate about women’s issues and empowering girls, and has offered a medical internship shadowing program to Westridge seniors.

Jossalyn is a one-of-a-kind trailblazer. She’s backpacked the entire Gabrielino trail; camped at the beach, desert, forest, mountains, and snow; recorded and reported watershed data, bird counts, and soil health; designed, built, and competed to become a national champion in remote-operated vehicles on land, air, and water; corresponded with state governors, presidents, queens, first ladies, poet laureates, and the United States Congress about STEM programming for girls; researched the 10 primary ecosystems of California; and taught hundreds of younger scouts. As a State Ranked Orienteer, she’s gained self-confidence, navigation, and courage.

Jossalyn ranks high in our hearts at Westridge as a lifelong learner dedicated to being her best bold self, while serving countless others.

Read Jossalyn's acceptance speech

2021 Distinguished Young Alumna Award Recipient
Jade McKnight ’09

Jade McKnight ’09 brings people together by supporting health and wellness, whatever the circumstances. 

Jade received her Bachelor’s degree in anthropology from Amherst College, and moved to Philadelphia to begin her career in non-profit programs. In providing health services, Jade witnessed firsthand the gaps in services that existed in the community. By 2017, the opioid epidemic was nearing a frightening peak in Philadelphia, and the demand for public health services was sky-rocketing. After working as a paralegal at a public interest firm, Jade made a huge shift and took a job at a non-profit public health organization and began graduate school at the University of Pennsylvania. Jade was awarded her Master in Public Health degree in December 2019. Jade moved home to Pasadena in May of 2019 and works as a school health program coordinator, managing programs that the school districts may not have resources to provide.

Enter COVID-19.

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States, Jade’s work as a school health program coordinator was quickly pivoted. As an employee at a government funded agency, Jade underwent FEMA Disaster Service Training and worked with LA County first responders to staff one of the first COVID-19 testing sites in the South Bay region of Los Angeles. Nearly a year later, Jade continues these duties as a Disaster Service Worker, working 30 additional hours a week at the test site, in addition to managing school and community-based programs and grants with local mental health providers and school districts in the Beach Cities. 

Jade is thrilled to be back in Pasadena, around family and close friends. She is hopeful for the future and thankful for the gift of life.

Read Jade's acceptance speech

Nominate the next Mary Lowther Ranney Distinguished Alumna Award recipient!



Watch Interviews with Award Recipients

Jossalyn Turner Emslie '83

Interiewed by Nathalie Sami '12

Jade McKnight '09

Interviewed by Jacqueline Yipp '21


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Meet the Alumnae Board


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Download Alumnae Recipes

Download these delicious recipes created by Westridge alumnae (and Director of Dining Services Brandon Worrell) for Alumnae Weekend 2021 below!

Avacado Toast

by Brandon Worrell, Director of Dining Services

A delicious breakfast or brunch staple.

California Citrus Negroni

by Jeanne Thiel Kelley '81

The classic recipe with a low- and non-alcoholic version.

Baked Eggs with Prosciutto, Parmesan & Arugula

by Sarah Tenaglia Taverner '76

A savory brunch in a muffin tin.

Lemon Drop Quarantini

by Sarah Tenaglia Taverner '76

A delightful spring cocktail.

Buttermilk Jam Drops

by Jeanne Thiel Kelley '81

Tender cinnamon sugar-coated, buttermilk-donut-like muffins.

Sparkling Sangria Punch

by Brandon Worrell, Director of Dining Services

A great sangria-style punch recipe to accompany brunch.


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Attend a Cooking Class

with Director of Dining Services Brandon Worrell

Download this recipe

Click below to download Chef Brandon's Avocado Toast recipe from his cooking class!

Download recipe (PDF)


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Learn Flower Arranging

with Pinky Lark Farnum '05


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Watch "Brave New World" Performance

by Kate Wallace ’71
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Take a Virtual Tour of Campus

Performing Arts Center

with Director of Theatre Brandon Kruhm

STEAMWork Design Studio

Watch this video to learn about the tools in our dedicated makerspace, the STEAMWork Design Studio!


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Sing Along to "Surgere Tentamus"

Performed by the Westridge Madrigals 2021


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Browse Recent News from Westridge

More than 40 Students Earn Awards on National Latin Exam

Congratulations to our Middle and Upper School Latin students who scored above the national average on the National Latin Exam and received awards for their high scores! These students took the National Latin Exam with approximately 130,000 students across the country and more than 40 Westridge students earned cum laude, magna cum laude, maxima cum laude, and summa cum laude awards.

Read More about More than 40 Students Earn Awards on National Latin Exam
8th Grade Play What If? Rounds Out a Season of Student-Driven Productions with Original Pieces Inspired by Movies and TV Shows

This weekend, the Westridge Theatre Department will present the 8th grade play What If? as its final production of the year. What If? is an original show comprised of four vignettes inspired by movies and TV shows, with scripts, costume design, scenic design, animation, and performances by 8th grade students.

Read More about 8th Grade Play What If? Rounds Out a Season of Student-Driven Productions with Original Pieces Inspired by Movies and TV Shows
Annual Voices in Literature and Culture Conference Expands Beyond Its Roots with New Digital Exhibit on “Storytelling”

The English Department’s annual “Voices in Literature and Culture Conference” is taking on a new form this year and expanding the scope of its theme to ensure that the conference remains accessible to student participants from all three divisions of the school. The conference went live as a digital exhibit this month, featuring 16 student works around the theme of “Storytelling.”

Read More about Annual Voices in Literature and Culture Conference Expands Beyond Its Roots with New Digital Exhibit on “Storytelling”
Red Cross Tests New Online Babysitting Training with Westridge 6th Graders

We often hear that Westridge students are highly sought-after babysitters. For 22 members of the Class of 2027, that may be truer than ever as they just completed the first-ever, synchronous online American Red Cross babysitter certification program. The collaboration with the American Red Cross was made possible by our 6th grade parent grade-level representatives (GLRs), who were determined to find a meaningful and fun way for their students to connect while in remote learning this spring. 

Read More about Red Cross Tests New Online Babysitting Training with Westridge 6th Graders
Leadership Appointments: Director of Teaching & Learning and Director of Equity

Westridge is thrilled to announce the appointments of two, director-level administrators as part of the implementation of the 2020-2025 Westridge Strategic Plan. Ian Tatum will join us as director of equity, leading our school-wide diversity, equity, and inclusion programs. James Evans will join us as director of teaching and learning.

Read More about Leadership Appointments: Director of Teaching & Learning and Director of Equity
28 Days of Amplifying Global Voices with Orchestra Podcast

This Monday, April 12 at 7 pm, the first episode of the Chamber Orchestra’s new music history podcast will kick off a 28-day celebration of the underrepresented voices in music history. The podcast, entitled Crescendo: Amplifying Global Voices, will air at 7 pm every weeknight for 28 days on the new Westridge radio station KWST. Each student in the Chamber Orchestra created their own podcast episode that explores the musical contributions of underrepresented groups such as female composers and minority people, communities, and cultures.

Read More about 28 Days of Amplifying Global Voices with Orchestra Podcast
Speech and Debate Speaker

The Westridge Speech and Debate Team has now been competing in online tournaments for more than a year, and the team has met the challenge with great success! They have taken advantage of the opportunity to virtually compete in out-of-state tournaments they wouldn’t normally participate in and proved that they hold their own against competitors across the country.

Read More about Speech & Debate Team Conquers Online Tournament Format, Many Qualify for Prestigious National Competition
First Tiger Week Offers Students Hands-On, Experiential Learning from Home with Nearly 60 Faculty-Led Workshops

This week was Tiger Week at Westridge, a celebration of experiential learning featuring nearly 60 virtual workshops for students of all ages to explore a wildly diverse range of non-academic topics, from dog photography and woodworking to web app game design and music journalism.

Read More about First Tiger Week Offers Students Hands-On, Experiential Learning from Home with Nearly 60 Faculty-Led Workshops
Juanita Jimenez Named Honorary Alumna, Endowment Established in Her Name

Last weekend’s Alumnae Weekend celebration kicked-off in earnest with a virtual cocktail reception honoring ceramics teacher Juanita Jimenez who will retire in June after 50 years at Westridge. After a series of heartfelt and emotional tributes from Head of School Elizabeth J. McGregor and alumnae, Juanita was named the school’s third-ever honorary alumna.

Read More about Juanita Jimenez Named Honorary Alumna, Endowment Established in Her Name
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Before You Go...

Check Out Spyglass

Our student newspaper Spyglass is entirely online and reporting on local and national news, entertainment and media, politics, COVID-19, and all things Westridge culture. Check out their latest edition below!

Read Spyglass Online


Westridge Theatre Presents: Eden Experiments

*Rescheduled from original dates
Saturday, April 17 at 7 pm*
Sunday, April 18 at 2 pm*
Streaming online

Eden Experiments is a hit reality show attempting to answer the question "Are humans innately good or bad?" Six teenagers are raised with zero human interaction and only the company of classic literature or reality TV. After 18 years, when the teens are finally allowed to meet, will evil and reaction shots triumph? Or can our heroes improvise a more poetic ending? Written, designed, and scored by students in a collaborative devising process, this original work seeks to 100%-scientifically resolve the question of human nature. Tickets are free but reservations are required.


Our campus

Explore More of Our Campus (Virtually)

We may not be able to host you on campus this year, but we'd love to show you around virtually! Click below to explore Westridge through an interactive map, scroll through photo galleries and program highlights, and watch videos created by students, faculty, and administrators about life at our school.

Explore Virtual Tour

Make a Gift to Westridge

Alumnae Weekend events are free of charge, but please consider making a gift to Westridge.

Click HERE to use our mobile app or text TIGERS to 71777. 

Give Now

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Questions? Contact us at
Alumnae Weekend Class of 1971