Dean’s Office Digest

Chairs and firepits assembled on Manchester Plaza

Wake Forest facilities staff install propane fire pits and Adirondack chairs on Manchester Plaza on Thursday, January 21, 2021. The area will be used for safely distanced student life programming during the winter.

Dear Faculty and Staff,

It’s the start of a new semester, and not that long ago, we anticipated it would mark the final act of the pandemic. Instead it looks like we are stuck in Act II a while longer. There is much good news to herald, nevertheless. Health care workers and older adults are getting their vaccines and plans are being made for the rest of us. President Biden, after issuing an Executive Order stating that “every student in America deserves a high-quality education in a safe environment,” has committed new federal resources for safely and quickly reopening schools and vaccine distribution. Here at Wake Forest, we have learned much about sustaining a residential campus in a COVID-19 world, and we have been applying our COVID-19 lessons with a vengeance. Staff have worked tirelessly across the break to check ventilation systems, build up PPE supplies, and deep clean all our spaces. The university has set up a COVID-19 Office to expedite contact tracing and COVID-19 prevention. Facilities has transformed Manchester Plaza into a safe and inviting hang out with firepits, Adirondack chairs, and string lights. Campus Life spent the weekend greeting returning students at the gate and sending those few without negative COVID-19 results in hand to the Best Western. Faculty have been preparing their spring courses in multiple modalities, mindful of strong student desire for safe, socially distanced, in-person learning opportunities in and out of the classroom. We are not out of the COVID-19 woods yet, but I am confident we are ready to meet any remaining COVID-19 challenges as we welcome our students back and give them the great education they seek and deserve. It’s an honor to be part of a community composed of such dedicated faculty and staff.

– Michele Gillespie

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Spring 2021 Calendar

1/25/21 – submissions due 1/19
2/8/21 – submissions due 2/2
2/22/21 – submissions due 2/16
3/8/21 – submissions due 3/2
3/22/21 – submissions due 3/16
4/5/21 – submissions due 3/30
4/19/21 – submissions due 4/13
5/3/21 – submissions due 4/27

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