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Thank You — And Looking Ahead to Spring

Dear Billiken Companions, 

This fall feels like it’s been 1,000 years long. As we enter the final stretch, we want to thank you — again — for pulling off something many thought we couldn’t do. We managed to stay in-person until Thanksgiving, just as we planned back in August.

But we know this achievement didn’t come without a cost. Limitations on in-person gatherings have taken a toll. This is as true for staff and faculty as it is for students.

Many campus stakeholders will be reviewing how the fall semester went and working to identify possible adjustments for the spring (assuming COVID-19 spread is manageable and local, state, and federal restrictions allow us to do so). 

As we plan for spring, we welcome your thoughts on how to add opportunities for community-building and in-person connection while still prioritizing the health and safety of our #OneSLU community. Share your experiences and ideas by completing the following form. (Note: you’ll need to be logged into MySLU to access the form.)

 https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSf2tDMYsc2m3MLVa9esFTLjIJYLdO-99pcMfgcF6MD2GUDPUw/viewform

We know the campus experience this fall wasn't what most of you wanted or expected. Masks and physical distancing are real barriers to connection, and the inability to host on-campus social gatherings only made things more challenging. Prioritizing in-person instruction is essential for all of us to be here, but that also has significantly reduced the amount of indoor space available for dining, studying, participating in online classes and, unfortunately, events and other activities. 

Masks, distancing, and using event spaces for classroom instruction will be essential in the spring just like they were in the fall. But we also have learned that structured, in-person activities with appropriate safeguards can be relatively safe, and that is why we are looking for your suggestions in the above survey.

We can’t promise we will be able to do all the things you suggest, but we can promise to take your suggestions into consideration as we look to expand in-person opportunities going forward. We yearn deeply for these opportunities for connection, and we know you do too!

Thanks again for making this fall possible. We wish you a safe holiday and some well-deserved rest as you head into finals. 

Sincerely,

Debie Rudder Lohe (she/her/hers)
Interim Vice President for Student Development

Joseph Reznikov (he/him/his)
SGA President