Since March of this year, I have written to you many times about the unprecedented circumstances we are all facing. This weekend’s news from our nation’s capital propels those conversations to extraordinary levels.

No matter where you fall on the political spectrum, I trust you will join me in hoping for a speedy and healthy recovery for our country’s leaders, as we also offer our deepest thoughts for those close to us who are suffering the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This situation should also serve as a critical local reminder to do everything we can to slow or stop the spread of the coronavirus—wearing face coverings, physical distancing, washing hands frequently, testing, and following all current protocols as outlined on the University’s COVID-19 website.

I hope that beyond doing the right things physically, we also hold close to our hearts Illinois State’s core values, particularly the value of Respect. As you take care of yourselves, please also look out for your roommates, classmates, neighbors, colleagues, family, and friends. They may not be calling out, but they may be reaching out for your support and compassion. Please show respect and care for them in these most uncertain times.

As always, my wish for you is a healthy and fulfilling completion of this fall’s semester. As we draw closer to its conclusion, my thoughts and best wishes are with you.

We are all in this together.