Pryce Hadley, '12, had a distinguished college career at Albion. He won a Udall Environmental Scholarship his junior year and helped to start Albion's student farm.
Now he's helping launch an iOS app with his uncle Tom Bender, '85.
Pryce moved to Boulder, Colorado last fall to help kick start History Spots Inc., Tom's mobile tech start-up. Their first project is an education entertainment mobile web app called The Story of Where.
"The Story of Where pulls from a variety of publicly available historical databases, such as the National Register of Historical Places, to fuel a user-friendly, place-based educational tool," Pryce says.
Filling a Need
The idea, says his uncle Tom, came from his own cross-country travels with his family.
"My kids were in the back seat on their iPod Touches killing zombies, flinging Angry Birds and playing Doodle Jump and I thought, 'Hey, there needs to be an app that tells kids all about their surroundings on a road trip,'" Tom says.
Unhappy with the travel apps available, Tom decided to launch his own -- with Pryce joining him in September 2012.
Making The Choice
During his own college search, Pryce valued the guidance of his uncle.
"I wouldn't have heard of Albion without his advice," Pryce says. "As I was raised in the Upper Peninsula, Albion was not exactly on my radar. My uncle's stories about going to college and the funky places he discovered in the surrounding community caught my attention."
Ultimately, Pryce's interest in the environment drew him to Albion.
"It was Albion's Center for Sustainability & the Environment that sealed the deal," Pryce says. "Dr. Tim Lincoln and the other professors involved with environmental causes on campus are truly a great, open-minded bunch. They convinced me it was worth giving Albion a shot."
The Albion Family Connection
Tom had a family connection to Albion as well. His uncle, Bill Pincoe, '61, was captain of Albion's baseball team. Tom remembers playing with his uncle's baseball gear while visiting his grandparents in Battle Creek, Mich.
Although his mother and father each attended different colleges, Tom says he always had a "draw for the purple and the gold."
"I look back on the Albion College experience and have some wonderful memories," he says. "I remain very close with many, many friends from Albion and continue to see many of them once or twice a year in Colorado and Michigan."
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.
"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
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.
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Recognized alumni have:
Excelled early in life and shown potential for continued success.
Received recognition as an emerging leader through professional and/or community achievements.
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Served as an outstanding young role model for current and future Albion College students.
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Legacy Stories: The Kline Family
Karen Kline, ’83, never had a doubt that she would attend Albion College.
Kline’s father, Patrick Pugh '56, returned to campus to help direct the marching band in the mid-1970s. Karen would come to campus to watch football games and watch her father direct the British Eighth. But even before that, she remembers Albion-related family conversations with her grandfather, Otto Baur, ’26.
"Attending Albion was never a question," Karen says. "I didn't apply anywhere else. I felt at home on campus."
Now her son, Daniel Kline, ’15, attends Albion and marches with the British Eighth – just as she did. And her oldest son, Jeff Kline, ’10, was involved in the music program as well.
Together, the Pugh-Kline family makes up four generations of proud, dedicated Britons. Giving back to Albion is what this family does.
Kevin Meets Karen
The Kline-Pugh legacy story mostly goes through Karen’s side of the family, but all members of the family have given back to their alma mater.
Kevin Kline, ’81, was a first-generation Briton. He remembers hearing about Albion College through his Methodist church in Saginaw.
"I didn't apply anywhere else," he says.
He met his future wife, Karen, at a Union Board movie showing. After that initial introduction, Kevin and Karen kept running into each other on campus. They started dating a few weeks after that.
"One memorable date was an evening walk through the Whitehouse Nature Center," Karen says. "We were engaged just before my junior year and married six weeks after my graduation."
Fourth Generation of Britons
When the Klines had children, Albion continued to be a part of their life. Of the Kline family children, two out of three – Jeff and Dan -- ended up at Albion College.
"When the boys were growing up, sharing memories and stories of Albion was pretty common with five graduates in the family," Karen says. "Neither of the boys applied anywhere else. They only considered Albion."
But Dan says there was no pressure – just gentle encouragement.
"While my parents always recommended Albion, they encouraged me to look elsewhere and go where I want," Dan says. "But Albion was always on my radar."
Dan was drawn in by the campus tour and quality academic departments. Now he’s a member of the British Eighth, just like his grandparents and parents.
"I will not forget the first time my mom watched her grandson march across the football field as part of the British Eighth," Karen says, "the same band her husband and daughter marched in. She teared up with joy and pride."
The Legacy Continues
The Pugh-Kline family sees the Albion connection as a deeply-rooted family tradition going back four generations.
"Now that the boys are Britons, we share old memories and are making some very wonderful new ones," Karen says. "And the boys have relished being a four-generation family. It is a special thing to claim."
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