Letter From the Director: Thoughts on the Covid-19 Outbreak

Last updated: Mar 23, 2020

The current Covid-19 pandemic has forcefully come to the forefront of the nation’s psyche in relatively little time, rapidly—and radically—altering the rhythm of our lives. In less than two weeks, our work, school, and social schedules have been turned upside-down. Terms that were unheard of such as “social distancing” and “shelter in place” are now on everyone’s lips. Many of us are now living with the reality of remote work and school. My office’s function has now moved entirely to an online format. Everyone is making significant adjustments.  


I believe it’s time for us take a look in the mirror and ask ourselves what we’re doing to help or hinder the cause. Very plainly, we have a responsibility to follow the directives put forth by government and medical authorities. As quickly as we’d like for this emergency to pass, it appears it will be—at the very least—several weeks before we have a better grasp of the situation we’re up against. Let’s make sure we’re doing our part to see the virus’ threat pass as quickly as possible. This is an unprecedented crisis event. We’re in it together.

 

From the simplest measures (washing our hands frequently) to the more restrictive ones (avoiding larger groups of people), it’s a time for us to practice responsible citizenship. We can significantly lessen the risk of contagion with these behavior modifications—not only for our own wellbeing but, especially, for the protection of those most vulnerable. We can’t afford to overburden our healthcare professionals and tax medical resources. Putting up with temporary inconveniences now will bring a return to normalcy faster.

 

I’m not saying this is easy. The stress felt from the cloud of uncertainty is real. Beyond the immediate physical concerns, we’re anxious for our jobs, businesses, and kids’ education. But, I have faith in our collective resolve and resilience. I truly believe we’ll emerge from the crisis as a more unified and, yes, more thankful nation. I’m trying to make lemonade from the lemons. Staying huddled under one roof, our family is spending quality time together and getting reacquainted. And until further notice, we’re only leaving home for essentials.

 

For now, my thoughts primarily rest with the health and emotional state of the families and communities of our nation and world. My heart goes out to those whose lives have already been affected by the virus. I also think about those that will have commencement ceremonies, religious observations, and other milestones postponed or canceled. Let’s hope the majority of those special occasions can be rescheduled and celebrated when this storm passes. Our spirits could use the boost!  

 

I look forward to the time when I’m writing again here to encourage professional development. Life will, eventually, get back to normal. We’ll go back to the office. Schools will re-open. Grocery shelves will be fully stocked. We’ll eat in restaurants, go to baseball games, attend birthday parties, and shake hands. In the meantime, I hope we’ll weather this challenge—physically, emotionally, and economically—in such a way that gives us a greater appreciation for things that we often take for granted under normal circumstances.