Dear Wolverine Families,
The fall semester is officially underway, and campus is filled with that buzz of excitement and activity that we sorely miss each summer. It’s exhilarating! And I couldn’t miss the chance to get out from behind my desk and pitch in. As students moved back into the dorms and off-campus housing, I was out volunteering with my colleagues to distribute safety care kits and spend some time serving as a Michigan Ambassador. I saw firsthand the students’ determination to do the right things and keep one another safe throughout the adjusted Welcome Week activities. This is thanks to all you have done to prepare them for this fall.
Okay, so they’re here, virtually or in person, and classes have begun—what do we do now? How do we support them through the entirety of the term? This edition of Family Matters will cover information on CARES funding to assist with financial difficulties as a result of the pandemic, mental health support for students in our community dealing with a wide range of concerns, and new or updated policies, strategies and resources for keeping Maize and Blue as safe as possible.
In particular, we have recently added an Addendum to the Statement of Student Rights & Responsibilities to reflect individual accountability measures needed to ensure safe behavior during the COVID pandemic. We’ve also launched a Sampling and Testing Program open to students, faculty, and staff, as part of a free, opt-in, voluntary COVID-19 surveillance testing program on the Ann Arbor campus. I also want to share with you information on the RA strike, as I am sure you’ve heard from your students and want to know more.
But none of the work for this semester has been done solely by us at the university. Thank you for having those conversations with your student about decisions that will help ensure their safety and a safe campus. Thank you for emphasizing the importance of the Pledge that is part of the Wolverine Culture of Care. Together, our efforts can help keep campus safe and prevent the need to revert to virtual instruction that could require sending students back home.
As a reminder, the FAQs on the Blueprint website are an excellent resource for you and your student, and they are regularly refreshed with common questions and the most up-to-date information. You can also reach out to Assist-Me@umich.edu to be routed to the best office to help you.
Thank you, and Go Blue!
Dr. Martino Harmon, Vice President, Student Life