End of Week Update from Dean Slaughter


September 4, 2020

Dear Tuck Students,

Welcome to Labor Day weekend.  Here in the United States, Labor Day became a federal holiday in 1894, when America was the world’s most important emerging market and the labor movement was very active.  Observed annually on the first Monday of September, it recognizes both work and the organizations that have advocated for greater rights for workers.

Labor Day offers a natural point to acknowledge and celebrate three important dimensions of your work: past, present, and future.

First is the work that every one of you did to get to the Tuck School.  In both the T’21 and T’22 classes, the average amount of pre-Tuck work experience is nearly five and half years.  That’s a collective 3,000 years, full of accomplishments and insights, that contributed to your admission to Tuck – along with the over 2,000 years of undergraduate and other tertiary education you succeeded in as well.  Every one of you earned admission to Tuck.  If you ever find yourself feeling a bit overwhelmed at Tuck, draw strength from all that you’ve accomplished through your hard work of the past.

Second is the work that every one of you is doing while enrolled here at Tuck.  T’22s, you have covered so much material in your first two weeks of Fall A that exams start up next week.  T’21s, you navigated the entire first year and then your summer internships, and your second-year classes begin on Tuesday.  One of the messages I hear most often from alumni is the ongoing value of the rigor of the Tuck curriculum.  We faculty and staff recognize that your Tuck education requires diligent and sustained work from us as well as from you.  As we discussed in yesterday’s Community Conversation, our partnership in your education is one of shared co-creation.  You are working very hard, in and out of the classroom, and our faculty and staff match that with their energy and passion for our educational mission.

Third is the work that you will do in the years and decades beyond Tuck.  The planet is so ready for all the ways in which you will better the world through your wise and decisive work.  After you graduate there will be opportunities to make organizations more productive, more sustainable, and more diverse.  Today, among the Fortune 500 companies there are only three Black CEOs. All men. Today, among the S&P 500 companies there are only 29 women CEOs.  Yes, your work beyond Tuck will hopefully bring material success to you and to others.  But for those you will manage and lead, your work will most importantly help bring meaning to their lives.  As Pope Francis has rightly observed, “Work is fundamental to the dignity of a person.”

So, this long Labor Day weekend, please enjoy some well-deserved rest while you reflect on the work you have done, the work you are doing, and the work you will do.



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