Maria Berrocal '82 and Alexandra Acabá Berrocal '18, mother and daughter, were close before Alexandra started attending Bryn Mawr, but having the shared connection of a Bryn Mawr experience has brought them closer than ever. Each a member of a dark blue class, they've compared May Day photos and shared chants of Anassa Kata around their house.
How did you "meet" Bryn Mawr?
Maria: I met Bryn Mawr because I was applying to colleges at a time when most colleges did not offer the same opportunities for women than for men. I wanted to go to a school where I could thrive and where educating women was a priority.
Alexandra: Even though my mother went to Bryn Mawr and my brother went to Haverford, I had no idea I wanted to attend Bryn Mawr. When I went on a tour of the college and did an interview, it was love at first sight!
How has having Bryn Mawr in common affected your relationship?
Maria: It has brought us much closer and has helped us understand each other. It has also fostered an intellectual bond and underscored the need for empowering women in all realms. Having a common college experience that can be shared with my daughter is priceless!
Alexandra: Having my mom be a Bryn Mawr alumna is the best thing I could’ve wished for! From chanting Anassa Kata at home to comparing our May Day photos, I love how we can bond by sharing the Bryn Mawr experience and the same class color!
Describe your connection with each other today.
Maria: We talk to each other at least once a day, we discuss public events, current issues, courses that she is taking, and we take many trips together.
Alexandra: My mom and I are so close! Being far from home (Puerto Rico) is difficult but sharing Bryn Mawr brings me closer to her in spirit. We love being together every chance we get and she is truly my best friend.
Share your favorite story or anecdote about your relationship and/or Bryn Mawr connection.
Alexandra: When I was a sophomore, I wanted to get my mom the best Mother’s Day gift ever. She once told me that she had lost her lantern during a move. Therefore, I decided to go to Traditions and buy her a dark blue lantern so that we could both have matching lanterns. I wrote [notes] on the lantern saying how much I loved her and I knew it was the best Mother’s Day gift when I saw the huge smile on her face.
How do you support and remain connected to the College today and why?
Maria: Through my daughter, I remain connected about current issues on campus and am also a witness to the value of a Bryn Mawr education today. Since my graduation, I have supported the college and tried to attend alumnae activities as often as possible.
Alexandra: As a senior, I have become more involved at Bryn Mawr. Currently, I am the president of the Latinx affinity group Mujeres*, I work for the dean’s office as part of the Tutoring Supervisory Committee and I’m the senior representative of the Spanish Department. Having these different roles on campus has made me appreciate Bryn Mawr and my education. Even though I’ll be graduating in May, I’m looking forward to being a part of the extensive Bryn Mawr alumnae network that my mom is a part of as well.