Dear Parents and Families:
Four weeks ago, UNLV announced it would transition to remote instruction to safeguard against the threat from COVID-19. Perhaps like you, I hoped we would later regard that step as prudent but overly cautious. Unfortunately, that was not the case, and we have had to take additional steps in reaction to this medical emergency.
In light of all that has happened, I wanted to reach out on behalf of the more than 400 staff members in the Division of Student Affairs who continue to work daily to support you and our students.
As some of you may know, Student Affairs oversees Enrollment and Student Services, The Center for Academic Enrichment and Outreach, Campus Life, and Wellness. Because our Division touches nearly every aspect of the students’ out-of-classroom experience, a former student leader referred to our Division as the heartbeat of campus.
Lately, it may seem to you and your student as if that heartbeat is a bit distant, but that could not be further from the truth. We are here, and we very much care about the wellbeing and success of our students.
Over the last few weeks, we have worked tirelessly to transition many of the student support services to remote-delivery models. Whether students should need counseling, tutoring, financial aid planning, enrollment support, wellness services, or representation from Student Government, among other services, it is still available.
While this pandemic presents many challenges, it has also provided a chance for us to show our humanity, kindness, and dedication. It is moving to see how many parents donated household goods to the 185 students who remain in our residence halls. Through your struggles, the fact that you would pause to help our students says so much about your generosity.
In my more than 40 years in higher education, I have been continually amazed by the resilience of college students. No place is that more evident than at UNLV, where our students and alumni succeed despite obstacles. Our campus itself is an improbable oasis in the middle of the desert, thriving against the odds for 62 years.
Earlier this year, UNLV rolled out a new slogan, “Rebels Make it Happen.” The simple phrase celebrates the grit and determination of our students. Now, months later, when that resoluteness is needed more than ever, those words seem particularly appropriate.
Over the next few weeks, if you or your student needs support, please ask. You may email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. And remember, Rebels Make it Happen.
Dr. Juanita P. Fain
Vice President for Student Affairs