Dear teaching colleagues,
Tomorrow is our First Day of Classes, and the transformation of our campus this past week has been remarkable, with students and parents milling around Polk Place, maps (or phone apps) in hand, browsing the T-shirt selection at the Student Stores or making their way to their residence halls, suitcases in tow. The energy is palpable.
I look forward to resuming our in-person, on-campus experience this fall. We know that such an experience is critical not just for learning but for the mental health and well-being of our students and our campus community. The safety measures we have adopted, which include vaccines, masks and testing, represent a comprehensive approach to fighting the coronavirus. I am reassured that our students’ attested vaccination rate is 86% and that our faculty/staff attestations are climbing. Our health and safety experts are closely monitoring conditions daily.
We know that the coronavirus is not behind us and that we will face challenges during the semester ahead. The attached document, Classroom Guidance for Fall 2021, has been created to provide you with information and resources to answer common teaching questions.
I’m also attaching an infographic prepared by Kelly Hogan, the College’s associate dean for instructional innovation, that I hope you will find helpful. It was created based on student feedback on surveys asking them what they would like most from in-person learning after more than a year of remote instruction.
We know that you will have questions as the semester begins. The Dean’s Office is here to assist. Questions can be relayed via your department chair to the appropriate senior associate dean. Thank you for your commitment and dedication to our students.
Terry Ellen Rhodes, Dean