December 18, 2020
Dear Students and Colleagues,
Today marks the end of our historic fall term, and the start of our much-deserved winter holiday. I would like to extend to everyone a message of gratitude, of rest, and of hope.
First, gratitude. Across this fall term – and, for many of us, across nearly all of 2020 – we have played our part both to support the health and well-being of our Tuck community and to deliver our distinct MBA experience. Our shared work has required so much creative resolve and courage amidst so much uncertainty. This work has often been hard. We endured the passing of a dear colleague. We had to make difficult financial decisions to safeguard a resilient future. We had to care for our families, our friends, our neighbors. What we have accomplished is truly remarkable, and for all for of this I am extremely grateful.
Second, rest. Even in a typical academic year, our winter holiday offers a welcome break to rest our minds, our bodies, and our spirits. Amidst this historic year where the intensity of our shared effort has been unprecedented, our need for rest is similarly unprecedented. Please take good care to relax, reflect, and recharge over the winter holiday. For any students for whom winter will be a relatively – or entirely – new undertaking, Mother Nature delivered quite the holiday present yesterday. Enjoy! I am gleeful at the prospect of Nordic skiing at the Garipay fields and at Oak Hill. I am perhaps even more gleeful at the prospect of a break from Zoom.
Third, hope. For many of us, the winter holiday brings celebrations of light and of hope. This evening marks the end of Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights in the Jewish faith. In the Christian faith, next Friday is Christmas. Kwanzaa, an African American holiday tradition, is celebrated in the 7 days following Christmas, ending on New Year’s Day. And, astronomically, this Monday is the winter solstice: the point in earth’s annual journey around the sun that marks for the Northern Hemisphere six months of increasing daylight.
The pandemic made so much of our 2020 dark. But when I look to 2021, I see lots of light and hope. Vaccines whose efficacy seemed fanciful in the spring are now being produced and dispensed with great hope that the beginning of the pandemic’s end is upon us. I have great hope for Tuck in 2021. We have navigated the fall; we will rest over the winter break; and we will meet the New Year with renewed energy and spirit.
So with this message of gratitude, of rest, and of hope, please keep healthy and safe over our winter holiday. I look forward to seeing everyone again soon in the new year.
Dartmouth has formed a high-level task force to plan for and manage possible disruptions related to the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak, monitor federal and state recommendations, implement guidance, and communicate with our community.