It was such a privilege to be able to share with you the progress being made in the intensive work of planning to bring our community back to campus during this week’s Town Hall discussions. Please know, too, how grateful we are to you for sharing so many of your questions, concerns and ideas in advance of those meetings, so that we could adjust the presentations accordingly.
Of course, it bears repeating that we will formally announce our intentions for fall on July 1. However, I can share with you that Monday, August 31, will mark the start of our new academic year - regardless of the decision we make about the delivery of instruction in the fall.
You’ll notice that this updated academic calendar includes instruction on Labor Day, and a shorter break between A- and B-Term. That’s because this calendar has been designed to provide us with the ability — if public health trends or other factors make it necessary — to be remote for the two weeks after Thanksgiving. Of course, that also means that B-Term will end earlier than usual, and the winter break will be longer.
Our goal is to minimize breaks to help minimize the chances of bringing back illness through travel, and maximize in-person instruction and campus life. We will be offering flexible options to our students—and faculty are engaging in professional development this summer to ensure academic excellence whatever the mode of learning.
August 31 will be here before we know it, and our work to make this an outstanding experience for our students will not cease. Keep watching for other important dates, particularly about moving in. Your engagement—with planning and through individual efforts to enable us to continue to support your progress in your academic endeavors —is of paramount importance. Please continue to send your questions and ideas to WeAreWPI@wpi.edu.
Thank you for your continued support and partnership in this important work. I’m looking forward to the next steps we will all take together.
Stay safe and be well.