Dear Adelphi Community,
I hope this message finds you well. As we return to continue the spring semester today, I want to welcome you back; and yet it seems that we are not returning back to campus or learning and teaching and operating as we knew it at all, but rather transitioning into a new virtual reality of sorts. So as your provost and chief academic officer, rather than saying welcome back, I will say welcome to our new reality—one that we share with each other, our colleagues and everyone around us.
I have always seen Adelphi as a strong community, but in the past few days and weeks, I have discovered the extraordinary depth of that strength. We care about each other; we are innovative and committed; and we share common values of respect, inclusion and a deep concern for all.
I realize you are all working diligently to navigate this unprecedented public health crisis while we each also continue our primary work, teaching, learning, discovering and caring for the physical and mental health of our students and one another.
It’s painful to imagine how many in our community are feeling stranded, with so much uncertainty, separated from their families and colleagues and unsure of what’s next. I feel the sadness of our students whose college experience has been so rudely interrupted. And it’s heartbreaking to know of how much this is hurting our staff, parents, faculty and so many who rely upon our University.
Many of us are now playing the role of full-time teacher to our children, turning kitchen tables into offices or study spaces, and adapting to a range of other disruptions in our social patterns. The effects of this pandemic are exposing disparities based on age, economic status, access to food and more. It is a time we never could have imagined just a few long weeks ago.
The efforts you are making to stay in touch with one another and to learn and adapt to new technologies (or technologies new to you!) are simply remarkable. Our students are sacrificing the social and interpersonal connections they deserved to expect in their college experiences; our faculty are completely reimagining their coursework; and our staff is going to great lengths to keep the Adelphi community safe and functional.
Thank you for your incredible response and support for those around us, with more understanding and more compassion, which in turn is bringing us more in touch with our common humanity. Even through the forced distancing, these qualities bind us together as a strong and vibrant community.
My heartfelt best wishes for a successful—though unusual and unpredictable—spring semester. We will continue to do everything we can to support your ongoing success and will keep you informed of all of the steps we’ve had to take to keep education alive during this unprecedented chapter in world history.
Provost and Executive Vice President