I hope you’re well. We all recognize that the upcoming spring semester will be different from what we hoped and imagined it would be, but we are excited for the start of the term nonetheless. We are preparing for an engaging, challenging and rewarding educational experience — both for those of you studying remotely and those who will be living on campus.
The semester begins with a sense of hope about the direction of the pandemic; daily cases, though still much higher than in the fall, are decreasing in Pennsylvania and nationally. And distribution of the vaccine, though slower than what we hoped, is underway. These are reasons for optimism. But they are not reasons for complacency. We must remain vigilant in our efforts to mitigate the spread of the virus and do all that we can to protect the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff.
That is why we are asking all members of our community to affirm their commitment to the Garnet Pledge. As a reminder, the pledge is a set of policies and expectations designed to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 at Swarthmore College.
Please read the Garnet Pledge for Students carefully. It has been updated based on our experiences in the fall and in consultation with the Student Life Expectations Subcommittee. All students — whether you are living on campus or studying remotely — are required to read, sign, and adhere to the pledge. (We will have a similar pledge with language specific to College employees that faculty and staff will be required to sign.)
This semester will once again require flexibility, adaptability, and a shared dedication to the well-being of our community. It may not be the semester any of us hoped for, but through your creative, ingenuitive spirit, and our collective commitment to serving the common good, I have no doubt that it will be every bit as rewarding and enriching.
Vice President for Student Affairs