Perseverance and Pride.
These are the words that come to mind when I think of the past few months and how the faculty, staff, and students of the School of Engineering rose to the unprecedented challenges presented by COVID-19.
Our faculty persevered—transitioning from residential courses to fully remote learning in less than a week’s time. They embraced new pedagogical techniques in online education to best reach our students and maximize their teaching effectiveness. Our staff meanwhile moved to remote working and kept right on task without disruption. Our homes became our classrooms, laboratories, and offices.
Our students persevered—actively participating in remote classroom instruction and laboratory experiences. They worked to stay engaged and continue learning at the highest level. Our seniors advanced to their well-deserved graduation and our underclass students finished the semester prepared for next year’s education.
Looking back now, I’d say we did even more than persevere. Against the odds, we thrived. And how does that leave me, as director of the School of Engineering, feeling?
I’m filled with a sense of pride. Pride in our faculty for redefining their idea of a classroom and excelling in the delivery of education in the remote space. Pride in our students for having the fortitude to master the material assigned to them in less than ideal circumstances. I hope that you share my pride in the faculty, staff, and students of our school. When you have the opportunity, please congratulate them for their successes this past term. They more than deserve it.
This past semester revealed that the people who make up our School of Engineering—students, faculty, and staff—can grow and excel even in the tough times. We’re ready for whatever challenges face us next. Our future continues to be bright.
—Dr. Tim Kurzweg