As we near the midpoint of the semester, it is always a good time to take stock in how things are going. This year, as we envision higher education in general—and Salem in particular—in new ways during the coronavirus pandemic that has caused such disruption to our lives, it is even more important.
My experience as an historian often prompts me to look back at how past generations coped during such times, and I find inspiration in knowing that Salem has successfully weathered other pandemics in its storied history. I can imagine how future generations will study this moment and learn from what we are doing right now.
It is, by all accounts, a story worth remembering. Faculty meld new technologies and proven teaching techniques to transform their curricula and ensure that students can keep learning despite the distance that keeps us physically apart. Library staff continue to expand access to required texts to help make remote learning a little bit easier for all our students. Our Student Affairs team responds to myriad questions to help ensure that our students succeed in and out of their virtual classrooms.
Despite facing unprecedented challenges and increased responsibilities, students support one another through a variety of remote formats, from online study groups to breakout rooms to chat boards. In all these ways we are creating a new Salem together: an institution that is capable of innovating to meet our new challenges while remaining grounded in our core values.
The responsiveness, resiliency, and care at the heart of all the ways in which we have innovated education during this crisis are just more evidence that we are, truly, Salem Strong. I believe future generations will agree.
Interim Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs
Dean of the College