Hag Sameah

Happy Wednesday, Deac families. We have several bits of news to share:

First, some great news from the OPCD: Wake Forest has been awarded the 2020 National Career Development Association’s (NCDA) Exemplary Career Center Program Award. The award recognizes a career center program for their commitment to thoughtful, innovative and effective initiatives that support career development. I particularly appreciated this quote from Andy Chan, our VP for Innovation and Career Development:

“Though students often have a career and life vision, we know that over a person’s lifetime crises happen that may involve job insecurity. Our most important work in career development is to prepare students for whatever economic environment they may face. It’s easy to get a job in a good economy when the wind is behind your sails, but sometimes the wind changes direction. With a growth mindset and the competencies to be employable for life, students can better navigate uncertainty in the job market.” You can read the full story here.

Second, today faculty and staff received an email from Provost Kersh and Executive Vice President Milam that talked about the financial impact of COVID-19 and ways that Wake is thoughtfully adjusting our normal practices. For example, we are pausing all hiring, suspending capital projects (unless essential), suspending discretionary spending, reviewing FY21 budgets for places that we can trim, and our senior leaders are taking a reduction in pay. The email also mentions the Crisis Response Fund that has been created to help alleviate the hardships on students, employees and contract employees. I found this very reassuring:

“We convey these measures to provide you with the clearest information we have at this time, hoping you will find strength in the knowledge that we are taking every step at our disposal to manage the impact of this global crisis. Wake Forest is strong and resilient. Our University has weathered world wars, depressions and a tumultuous move across the state. At this latest juncture in our history, our intensive planning always keeps in the forefront what has always made this institution special: its people.”

Some of you have asked me to share resources that can help you help your students in this unsettling and scary time. I am picking the brains of some of my campus partners about potential resources and will share them as I receive them. Here is a podcast recommendation I received from a professor who I very much admire; it is a podcast by Brené Brown, who is a research professor who has done a lot of work on courage, vulnerability, shame, and empathy. She shares some strategies to settle things down in our lives, be purposeful in things like media consumption, and how to give more (or take more) as needed in our relationships (“the family gap plan”), especially in times of anxiety and stress.

It’s 26 minutes and easy to follow. I hope it might help you – or help your Deacs. I believe Brené when she says “love is the last thing we need to ration” right now. So let’s love harder and throw in a giant dash of empathy for ourselves, our children, our partners, our colleagues.

A few program notes to close out the day:

Need to make a correction to yesterday’s Daily Deac: I gave the wrong hashtag for your pictures of how you are representing WFU at home. That hashtag is #WakeFromHome. So please use that hashtag in your social media feeds.

This time of year is an important time for many faith traditions. As such, I want to wish all our Jewish parents and families a Hag Sameah, or Happy Passover. The idea of harm passing over houses really has a new and poignant meaning to me – and maybe to others reading this as well.

For our families who are celebrating Easter this weekend, you can join the WFU School of Divinity for a virtual Sunrise Service on Easter Sunday. The video service will begin at 7 a.m. at facebook.com/wakediv and will be available to rewatch immediately after.

Heads up for future programming: the Daily Deac will not run on Good Friday, nor will the Call Center be open Friday (we will be open tomorrow (Thursday), and will reopen next week from 9 am-5 pm Eastern at 336-758-7500).

Stay safe, y’all.


— by Betsy Chapman, Ph.D. (’92, MA ’94)


Categories: the daily deac