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Letter from the Dean on Fall 2021 Planning

Stamps Community,
I am writing to follow up on President Schlissel’s announcement of the university’s plans for the Fall 2021 semester and impacts on planning currently underway here at Stamps.

As Pres. Schlissel notes, the Fall 2021 semester on campus will see an increase in residential learning, teaching, and working. What does this mean for Stamps?

  • Our Fall 2021 course schedule was developed through close engagement with our instructors and with attention to health and safety measures.
  • The space limitations of our shared building — and the unique needs of teaching and learning in studio environments — were taken into careful consideration when determining course modalities for the Fall 2021 semester.
  • Approximately 54%-60% of our Fall courses will be in-person or hybrid. This is an increase from the Winter 2021 semester (currently 16% of our courses are in-person or hybrid).
  • We are planning to provide students access to our studio spaces, equipment, and facilities to support the continuation of their work beyond their class hours.
  • Support for student-facing services at Stamps (advising, studio support) will incorporate all that we have learned from the 20-21 academic year, as informed by the staff providing lead support to those areas. Our planning for the future includes a combination of in-person and remote working arrangements for staff.
  • We aspire to do more than “return to normal.” Instead, we seek to honor the innovative approaches that have served our community well and bring them into our plans for the future.

These evolving plans reflect the unique needs and challenges of our community. As always, we are committed to excellence in teaching, learning and research, and ensuring health and safety. All our plans will require our flexibility and attentiveness in response to changing public health conditions.

We anticipate that more information on the campus fall health and safety requirements will be forthcoming from the university. I encourage everyone in our community who can get vaccinated to do so as soon as you are able. The university’s aspiration to continue our return to residential education depends on all of us doing our part, including vaccination, mask wearing, testing, and social distancing as needed.

I will share updates as planning within Stamps moves forward and I will continue to engage the community — students, faculty, and staff — in our planning process. My thanks to each of you for all you are doing to keep our community safe and in support of academic excellence. Best wishes as the semester moves forward and we look ahead with measured optimism.

Guna Nadarajan, Dean