After an unprecedented week in higher education and our nation, I write to you as alumni of our dear alma mater. Whether near or far from our campuses, I want to assure you that just as we are concerned with our faculty, staff and students here, we also have you in our thoughts and prayers.
Our Bronco community here has rallied. Faculty have been generous and creative in response as we have moved to virtual classes through the rest of the academic year. They have been helping each other adjust to new modes of teaching. Our staff has been similarly generous, extending distinctive cura personalis, or care for each person in mind, body, and spirit. For our students, on Friday, I sent them a homemade video because I wanted to speak to them directly, especially the younger among them who are trying to make sense (again) of the world they live in. For our graduating students, the disruption is especially difficult. They have been remarkably resilient and typically kind to one another.
I also recognize that these days have been challenging for you. The anxiety the students feel, we also experience, each in our own way. No matter where you are around the world, you are working and living in communities variously impacted by the virus and government response. You are dealing with the pandemic’s impact personally, socially, financially, even spiritually.
And you may have seen, Santa Clara has made the difficult but prudent decision to cancel or postpone many University and alumni events through at least mid-April. We are committed to bringing our Bronco family together and are working to provide alternative engagement opportunities in the days and weeks ahead. Please check our Alumni website often for updates on new offerings as they become available.
Many of our alumni have asked how they can support our community here. I offer a few ideas. If you know a Santa Clara student, reach out to them and offer your support and care. Or perhaps think about connecting with a fellow alumnus to share a laugh or a kind word of encouragement. In addition, we have established the SCU Special Assistance Fund to help students in particular need. Finally, keep us in your prayers. They matter to us.
When I began my service as president last summer, I could not have imagined what we are facing now. Neither did you, I’m sure. Amid all the uncertainty and anxiety, one thing is certain: we are in this together, and in this conviction we find our strength. This is what the Bronco spirit is about. This is who we are.
Clear-headed, calm, and generous, we will get through this, with God’s help and the help of one another, near and far.
Kevin F. O’Brien, S.J.
Please continue to stay informed through our website, scu.edu/covid-19, which includes a detailed FAQ.