Team Michigan Engineering,
Can you feel it? A sense of anticipation as we look to the next few weeks ahead. The start of every semester feels this way, as the quiet summer environment turns into a bustling community. But this time it’s amplified with an excitement for seeing old friends or forging new relationships, and having fresh—and safe—experiences in the labs, classrooms, workplaces and community spaces on campus.
This video captures many of the voices of our community, and what we’re all looking forward to:
As we come together again to live and learn through this pandemic, anticipation may also bring a sense of trepidation for some about what the semester may hold. There are many potential challenges, such as understanding and remembering all the new protocols, and keeping an eye out for when conditions might change. Or evaluating the risk of various scenarios, and making personal decisions about how to engage in a way that is responsible for our collective health and well-being. Even navigating difficult conversations about actions we can take to ensure equity and comfort for all.
We take none of this lightly. And yet we know that, together, we are better. As individuals and as a community, we must come together to achieve our mission of excellence in education, research and outreach in order to serve the common good. We must live our values of collegiality, transparency, trustworthiness, innovation and, of course, equity. Let’s show our true engineering grit and remain adaptable, resilient and proactive in tackling challenges head on.
There is a lot to remember as we come back to campus, and our leadership team is going to be sending you additional messages this week with a rundown of things most pertinent to you right now. As we have seen throughout this pandemic, conditions can change unexpectedly. But what you can expect is that, if things change, we will send you clear updates, find ways to stay connected, and continue to thrive. I encourage you to read the materials sent from the University and College to know what is happening and what your responsibilities are as a member of this community.
I also encourage you to show compassion, flexibility, and respect for everyone in Michigan Engineering. Whether they are your classmate or coworker, professor or student, every single individual is worthy of your time and patience. Please be kind to each other, but also don’t forget what it’s like to be a part of an on-campus experience—and have a little fun.
Looking forward to seeing you all,
Dean Gallimore, Robert J. Vlasic Dean of Engineering