For many of us at Wesleyan this year, the springtime, like the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel, was a long time in coming. With not much of a spring break and ongoing tensions around the pandemic, this semester seemed longer than most. But then the weather turned warm just in time for reading week and finals, and I rejoiced to see students on Foss Hill or Andrus Field taking in the sun, finding ways to connect. And now, exams are finished, graders are grading, seniors are getting ready to celebrate, and covid is on the decline. The sun is here, and I say, “it’s alright!”
A special shout out to the pandemic committee (Rick Culliton, Lisa Brommer, Sun Chyung, Mark Hovey, Fran Koerting, Anne Laskowski, Tom McLarney, Chris Olt, Nicole Stanton, Andy Tanaka, Joyce Topshe, Joyce Walter, Mike Whaley, Dave Winakor and Renell Wynn) that steered our response to covid for more than a year. Well done! Professors found ways to connect with their students in labs, classrooms, zoom rooms, studios, and seminars. Staff members, mostly working from home, kept the institution running and in good shape to take full advantage of our post-pandemic future. Coaches found creative ways to build resilience and team spirit, and our far-flung Wes community supported our university with their attentiveness, care and generosity. Thank you all!
A special thanks goes out to Wesleyan students, on campus and remote, who made this academic year so successful. It was only because students worked together that they could stay safe, advance towards their degrees, and have a college experience they will always remember. And there were good things to remember, many obstacles overcome. The arts were in full flower this spring, from the galleries to the tents, studios, and lawns. Athletics also found its footing, and I was so happy to see our undergraduates competing in safe environments. Prizes were won, experiments were completed, people fell in and out of love… and lifelong friendships were forged even when wearing masks.
I’m excited for Commencement, just a few days away, and I wish you all a healthy, safe, and sunny summer!