There has been no time in our history when our educational institutions have been under as much duress as this year. The constraints imposed by this pandemic have threatened the core of what we believe is great education. Small group work, a welcoming campus and community celebrations have been replaced with physical distancing, a campus closed to visitors and masks that obscure the smiles and excitement of learning new things. What is remarkable is how students, faculty and staff have shaken off the temptation of defeatism and instead found joy in breaching these barriers with new and innovative methods of teaching and learning and with new ways of engaging our community.
In this issue of Perspective, we celebrate our alumni who have stepped up in remarkable ways during this past year. Steeped in these stories is a lesson of resilience, of staying true to one’s self in a time of crisis and giving to others that exemplifies the very best in our community. Across the pages of this first ever “digital only” alumni magazine, you will find celebrations of success that will make you proud to be a Sun Devil. We really hope you enjoy the dynamic new format and the interactive content it enables.
We would also like to express our gratitude to our community for the successful completion of The Next 100 Years Campaign. The building projects funded by your generous gifts to the Campaign transformed our campus just in time for us to use these new spaces to stay open and in-person for all but a few weeks of this school year. In addition, Campaign gifts to endowment significantly grew our ability to support our world-class teachers, innovative programming, and tuition assistance for deserving families.
As we created new schedules, new teaching methods and new ways of engagement this year, we have also continued to look towards our future with work on our next Strategic Plan. Building on our mission of offering a transformative and an extraordinary educational experience, we have invited the community to share with us stories of their own experiences. In these stories lies our future that will drive our decision making through our 100th anniversary in 2022 and beyond. We invite our alumni to join us in this visioning exercise.
As we examine our past with an eye toward our future, we recommit to being an institution where every member of our community feels a deep sense of belonging and can truly rise to their best selves. To create and maintain a positive and growing culture of learners will take consistent and hard work from each of us. Please join us in this important work.