First-year brings family connections, quilt to her Ripon experience

When Chase Polyak ’25 of Lombard, Illinois, starts at Ripon College as a freshman this fall, she brings with her some touching family connections.

She is a Legacy student as her maternal grandfather is John Robertson ’68.

And she is bringing with her a very special Ripon College quilt made by her paternal great-aunt, Nancy Davis. Davis made quilts for all of the cousins on that side of the family and themed them for something relevant in their lives. Polyak had announced that she would be attending Ripon.

Davis enthusiastically contacted the College to get assistance with appropriate images to create this special item for Polyak. She gave the quilt to her brother, Polyak’s grandfather, on Feb. 17. She died unexpectedly the next day.

It was a complete surprise when Pokyak was presented with the quilt. “I was very excited and it was emotional because I didn’t see it until after she died,” Polyak says. “She put a lot into everything that she did.”

The quilt was hung up for Polyak’s high school graduation party, where Robertson admired it. She now is bringing the quilt with her to campus. “It’s special because it’s something from my family that I can bring to school,” she says.

Polyak is a tennis recruit and plans to study communication and English. She chose Ripon because “I liked the atmosphere,” she says. “It seems very comfortable and something that is going to fit me very well.”


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