I write with a brief update before the weekend, following up on the June 22 announcement about Middlebury’s plans for the fall semester. This is the first of the weekly updates we will be sending you throughout the summer to keep you informed of our progress.
I write to share the much-anticipated news of our decision to move forward with reopening for the fall semester. While this fall will look much different than at any time in our history, I am grateful that we will be able to come together again in a way that upholds educational opportunity while maximizing the health and safety of the entire Middlebury community.
Today, Director of Health Services Mark Peluso and I published a column in the Addison County Independent with information and context on our planning and precautions around COVID-19. The column is part of our continuing dialog with all stakeholders in our work to manage the effects of the novel coronavirus, and responds to questions we’ve received from town residents. Of course, the content is relevant to us all.
Will college students return to Middlebury in the fall? If so, how will we ensure their safety and the safety of the wider Middlebury community? These are the questions that have driven us at the College since we sent the great majority of students home last spring and effectively evacuated the campus.
Once again, we are bearing witness to unconscionable acts of violence, rooted in racism, directed at Black people in the United States.
Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Sean Reed, George Floyd, and countless other Black people have been murdered. For their family, friends, and the Black community, here and around the world, grief and loss have been exacerbated by a literal witness to their death in media—something none of us needs or wants to see, but also knowing that without it, once again, justice would not be rendered.