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September 20, 2021

Summary

As we all settle into a rhythm this year, I thank you for your continued flexibility in all facets of delivering an education to our students. We continue to adapt with the latest public health circumstances, and I ask that we continue to extend empathy as we navigate this year.

Full Description

As we all settle into a rhythm this year, I thank you for your continued flexibility in all facets of delivering an education to our students. We continue to adapt with the latest public health circumstances, and I ask that we continue to extend empathy as we navigate this year.

  1. This week, we see our active COVID-19 case numbers decrease by quite a bit, indicating that William & Mary is on the right track in response to the earlier uptick in student case numbers. We are reassured that symptomatic students are getting tested. I am grateful for your adaptability and understanding in accommodating students, and appreciate your continued efforts on that front. Please stay tuned regarding the development of a faculty guide on COVID-19. We plan to have this guide posted online soon.
  2. Family Weekend is coming up shortly (Sept. 24-26), and I look forward to seeing our students and their families interact safely on our campus, as well as in our classrooms. Thank you for welcoming them and offering a window into the academic excellence we value so much at William & Mary. Special times such as these enable our students and their families to consider W&M as a second home, and I am glad that we are able to make this happen this year.
  3. Another event that I am looking forward to is Homecoming & Reunion Weekend. As a community, we will have the opportunity to welcome back and celebrate our alumni, especially the Class of 2020 for their in-person Commencement, during which Anthony Fauci will deliver (virtual) remarks. Fauci will also receive the honorary degree of Doctor of Science. Additionally, Dr. Thomas Lovejoy, a world-renowned expert in biodiversity and founder of “Nature” on PBS, and Donald Patten, former rector at W&M and a renowned lawyer in asbestos liability litigation, will receive honorary degrees. Patten will receive the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws and Lovejoy will receive the honorary degree of Doctor of Science. Of course, W&M will continue to monitor the public health of our community, but I am really looking forward to this opportunity for engagement. 
  4. This week, the Hazing Prevention Coalition (HPC) at W&M recognizes National Hazing Prevention Week. Recognition week activities are focused on what we can do to prevent hazing, things we should know and opportunities to become more active. HPC invites faculty & staff to review opportunities to engage with hazing prevention efforts over the course of the week, including signing the pledge online or in person on September 22, reviewing the steps on how to recognize hazing and knowing where and how to report hazing at W&M.
  5. The shout-out for this week goes to the powerful duo of IT with the Studio for Teaching and Learning Innovation. I cannot thank the combined teams enough for their work in helping our community implement a variety of teaching modalities this year. I am so grateful that we have such capable experts here at W&M!

Here’s to another successful week at W&M! Please let me or my office know if you have any questions as we head into Family Weekend at the end of this week.