March 25, 2020
Dear Holy Family University Community,
I’m thinking about all of the families connected to our community, and our connections to others across the country and around the world. As new “hot spots” and “stay at home” orders continue to occur, we all have friends, loved ones – and those whom we don’t even know – who need our prayers. The worst of times must always summon the best in each of us, because we are all connected to the oneness of the human family, and we are all in this together.
Here we are – just one week into a new way of learning online, working remotely and living our “new normal” – and each of us should take a moment to celebrate our successes.
- We’ve embraced new ways of teaching and learning. While the University was already offering online and blended classes as part of our curriculum, we’ve now effectively transitioned to a full-time online operation for the balance of the semester.
- Our faculty has risen to the occasion. They’re supporting each other through our Committee for the Oversight of Blended and Online Learning (COBOL) community, where they can raise and address questions virtually to best deliver new online learning experiences.
- Our staff is actively engaged with our students ensuring the services we deliver are seamless and that our students are getting the support they need, whether through academic advising, telephonic counseling services, career services, or through general fielding of other types of questions.
- Our IT department has been the backbone of our success, providing and assisting with the instructional technology and equipment to keep our remote operations running smoothly.
- Our students are adaptable and resilient. They are keeping pace with their coursework while adapting new ways of learning, and they are taking advantage of all the services we have to offer.
As part of our ongoing commitment to support our students’ success, we have four new Student Success Counselors available to help anyone who requires extra academic and/or emotional support. These angels have arrived just in time to help navigate the current turbulence, and they will be here permanently, thanks to the $2-million Title III Strengthening Institutions grant the University received this past fall from the U.S. Department of Education. Students may contact our Student Success team at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a message at 267-341-3351.
I know that the biggest question today is for our seniors; what about Commencement? While our May 18 Commencement ceremony at the Kimmel Center must be canceled due to the current situation, we are committed to celebrating our Class of 2020 achievements in-person at a future date. We are currently exploring every option to make that happen and will keep you posted.
For our accepted undergraduate students, we’ve extended our acceptance deadline until June 1, and our admissions team is actively engaging with students to discuss Financial Aid, share information about the HFU experience, and answer any questions. We continue to register students for the upcoming fall semester. Our Admissions staff is also working to stay connected with our graduate and Rapid Degree students to ensure they have the information they need to begin summer sessions without missing a beat.
Thanks to all of our alumni and friends who have reached out to me directly and also to our team. We appreciate your offers of support and everything you do to enhance student scholarship and advance our University.
One thing I know for sure, we are a close-knit and supportive Family, and we inspire each other. If you haven’t seen it, please take a moment to view this video, produced by our Women’s Soccer Team, with their inspirational message on Twitter. They said, “We had to get some touches in together during this quarantine.”
Please let’s keep in touch and continue to care for each other and the rest of the world in these current times and always.
Sister Maureen, CSFN, PhD