A Message from the English Department
Tuesday, March 24, 2020
Tuesday, March 24, 2020
Dear English majors,
Our thoughts have been with you over the last week as we have all been coping with the coronavirus pandemic and its disruptions. We hope you were safe and healthy during spring break and that you had family and friends to rely on during this uncertain time.
We now turn our attention to our work together. In the English Department’s Undergraduate Program office, we pledge to do everything we can to support you and your instructors as spring semester resumes.
First, know that all undergraduate courses in the English Department will continue this semester, though on a remote basis (that is, by Moodle, email, Zoom, etc.). Please be in touch with your instructor if you have questions; each course will proceed differently depending on the instructor and other factors. If you’re concerned that your questions about your English course aren’t being answered, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org . And if you have more general questions about the University’s transition to remote learning – or anything else related to this situation – go to https://www.umass.edu/
To graduating seniors: we were sorry to hear that Commencement is being postponed. We are sad that our own spring awards event and senior breakfast are being cancelled. But we are determined to recognize your achievements, and we will do everything we can to make sure you successfully finish your degree and transition to life beyond college. Our scholarship and essay competitions will proceed; Jabberwocky will be published; letters of specialization will be processed. You have worked hard to get this far, and we will help you get to the finish line!
Finally, for those English majors not graduating this spring, registration for summer and fall 2020 will proceed, though on a delayed schedule (see SPIRE for your new appointment times). We will send out more information about fall 2020 courses as we get closer to registration; in the meantime, if you have questions or concerns, contact your advisor or go to this page for more information: http://www.umass.edu/english/
We will get through this crisis! Perhaps being an English major will serve you well during it. A friend reminds me of how helpful reading and writing can be in times like these; she has been encouraging her students to write in a journal if they don’t already do so. And many of us have been taking advantage of “social distancing” to read books that we might otherwise not have had time or quiet to read.
That said, we also have one another! That community is now more important than ever. Please take care, and stay in touch.
Director of Undergraduate Studies
English Department, UMass Amherst