Supporting You Amid the Pandemic

Office of the President

April 2, 2020

Dear Graduate Center Students,

We know that pandemics alter the world, and that is exactly what we are experiencing with COVID-19. As is so well articulated in this essay by Professor Aisha Ahmad (University of Toronto) the COVID-19 pandemic not only threatens life and upends lives, it will forever change society.

We all feel displaced and adrift right now. And we're going to feel that way for a while. This is not a sprint, it’s a marathon, and we are in it together. If we are to adjust to our new normal and ultimately create a stronger, safer, more equitable society, we must first take care of ourselves and each other.

I want you to know that we at The Graduate Center are here for you. I along with our faculty and staff care deeply about your well-being. We know that you, like us, are adjusting to massive disruption in your personal and professional lives.

Already you have shown tremendous resilience. You are acclimating to our remote learning model. Many of you are facing the challenges involved with teaching your own distance-learning courses. You are finding new ways to conduct research and even defend your doctoral dissertations.

You are doing all of this amid threats to your own health and welfare and that of your families. It is massively straining, I know.

Our work as academics, as people who care and think deeply about society, is to dig deep, to find resilience, to find new questions to pursue and new solutions. I am inspired by the way that many of our scientists are adjusting their research to this new reality and ongoing threat.

Let me reiterate, we are in this together and must be here for each other. Our faculty and staff come to work with the primary goal of serving you, so lean on us.

Below are some Graduate Center resources that I encourage you to draw on. You will find more on our coronavirus website. And please reach out to your colleagues, your professors, and our student support centers to share your needs so that we can help you.

It is by rallying around each other that we will emerge from this catastrophe and be even stronger for it. To borrow Dr. Ahmad’s words, “May this tragedy tear down all our faulty assumptions and give us the courage of bold new ideas.”

Sincerely,

James Muyskens
Interim President

Updates on Student Resources Amid COVID-19

The Wellness Center and Student Counseling Center are up and running remotely. Students can set up remote consultations and attend online workshops. On Friday, at 10:30 a.m., the Wellness Center is hosting Self-Care for Graduate Students. Join here.

The Office of Career Planning and Professional Development continues to advise students through telephone and videoconferencing sessions as well as workshops. Today, at 3:30 p.m., the office is holding a webinar, Navigating the Career Search for Science Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Fellows. Register online.

The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs continues to operate remotely, advising students and faculty on applying for research funding. The office is holding four webinars in April and May on applying for NIH and NSF grants and more. Details are on Facebook.

Our coronavirus website includes additional information about student services and support systems. There is new information there about Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, which expands unemployment benefits to workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Submitted on: APR 2, 2020

Category: President's Office - Community Message