Dear Friends of ULS:

Last year, when planning the 2020 Commencement at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Lancaster, PA, we had no idea that our graduates would not have the chance to celebrate this momentous occasion together with family and friends. However, even in this challenging time, the ULS community came together to create an alternate recognition of our 2020 graduates. If you didn’t get a chance to watch the Farewell and Godspeed video service, or browse through the Commencement Commemorative Bulletin, which includes favorite Bible verses submitted by graduates, they are all available on our dedicated Commencement web page. Please join me in congratulating the ULS Class of 2020 and in wishing them the very best as they go out into the world to spread the work of God.

As you may know, Adams County (Gettysburg campus) moved into the “yellow” phase of Governor Wolf’s Process to Reopen Pennsylvania. This phase requires telework to continue where feasible. Philadelphia County remains in the “red” phase. Staff on both campuses will continue to telework at least until June 15. We will have further updates on intensives and fall classes at that time. We are considering several different scenarios and will continue to monitor the situation according to state guidelines, coming to a decision that is most applicable to the structure of ULS with the focus on keeping the community safe.

When classes were moved online a few months ago, ULS was already well-positioned to make a smooth transition. I’ve heard nothing but praise from students on how well faculty adjusted to online teaching without any interruption in teaching or learning. Our staff has been amazing – pulling together to get the job done remotely and assisting faculty and students (as well as each other!) in any way they can.

I wanted to especially acknowledge Don Redman, our Director of Information Technology, who has gone above and beyond to ensure staff and faculty have what they need to effectively teach and work offsite. In my Zoom chats with students, faculty and staff, many have sung his praises. Don has not only come up with innovative ways to meet the demands of this new model of teaching and working, but is a continuously calming presence in this chaotic time.

Of course, we can’t thank Don without giving equal thanks to his terrific staff: Derrick Tidwell, IT Site Manager- Philadelphia; Andrew Crouse, IT Systems Support Specialist; and Dr. Alex Reid, Educational Technologist and Coordinator of Student Learning Assessment.

Our collective appreciation is extended to all of those who serve ULS, but this week we highlight the hardworking ULS IT team! We thank God for you!

Please stay well and stay safe.

In gratitude,

Rev. Angela Zimmann, Ph.D.,CFRE
Interim President United Lutheran Seminary
Gettysburg + Philadelphia
President, United Lutheran Seminary Endowment Foundation
Adjunct Professor of Homiletics

 

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