We are reaching out to you during this difficult moment in time to offer reassurance, and to encourage you to find a sense of calm. As you rearrange your plans for the spring semester and adapt to new learning platforms and living environments, be they familiar or new, it will require an adjustment on your part.
Our advice is to find ways to let go of anxiety, understanding that “let go” does not mean to dismiss. It means to learn to let it be, to allow things to remain as they are. You should accept the realities of those things you cannot control, and invest in those things you can. For example, identify healthy activities you enjoy and continue to engage in them. You can also find creative new ways in which you and your friends can safely socialize while observing social distancing protocols.
Come to accept that this semester is going to be unlike any other which you have experienced, and it is going to be just fine. All of us here recognize that this is unparalleled, and are committed to the highest quality of education and instruction. What is occurring across the globe has an impact on you and others within the Rensselaer family. We need you to know that we see that, and we will do what we can to continue to support you.
We urge you to make the most of this semester. Learn for learning's sake. Be sure to pay attention to the lessons which are not a part of the curriculum, the life lessons you are sure to learn as we manage this global crisis as a global society.
It is simply a fact that change is inevitable. It does not make it any less difficult by stating it. This fact, however, is one of the driving forces behind our Institute's goal to imbue each Rensselaer student with an ability to be intellectually agile, to possess a sense of multicultural sophistication, and to operate through a global lens. We strongly urge you to call on those particular skills and viewpoints as we face this challenge together.
With great care and respect for each of you,
Travis T. Apgar,
Assistant Vice President for Student Life
Dean of Students
Vice Provost and Dean for Undergraduate Education