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Dear Gratz College Community:
I hope all of you and your loved ones are healthy and being careful as we navigate the impact of COVID-19 on ourselves, our families, our communities, the nation, and the world. Please take precautions. As my mother of blessed memory always told me “Wash your hands!” Now, more than ever, that motherly advice is important.
The good news for Gratz – the silver lining in this dark cloud – is that all of our online courses have continued smoothly. Gratz students in Philadelphia, across the continent, and in many other countries, are studying and learning; faculty are teaching (and of course we also learn every time we teach). We have just started classes for our Spring B term and are about to open enrollment for the summer.
Unlike many colleges, we did not have to pivot and rush into online courses with little or no preparation. We have been teaching online for two decades, and our college, high school, and continuing education faculty have years of online expertise. Thus, we made a smooth transition, as Gratz faculty and staff continue to teach and work from home. Our Jewish Community High School (JCHS) now operates online. Several of our continuing education classes are now online, with more to come soon.
Unfortunately, we had to close the Gratz building for the near term. We have postponed all Gratz events until at least June. The Shusterman lecture with Professor Pamela Nadell and the Rabbi Admiral Aaron Landes Lecture with Admiral Yossi Ashkenazi of the Israeli Defense Forces will be rescheduled. CLEs, lunch and learns, and other planned events will also be rescheduled. We will be sharing videos of past lectures and programs at Gratz, so that our community can continue to learn while at home.
The Gratz 125th Anniversary Gala, scheduled for May 31, has been postponed. We will let all of you know when we have a new date.
My colleagues on the Gratz faculty and staff are working diligently to support our students as our online College courses continue uninterrupted. Deadlines for course requirements this spring and summer will be flexible because we know that many of you have unexpected complications in your lives. We want you to know that Gratz has your back in this moment of crisis. We will all be working with you to ensure you can continue your education.
Please feel free to call or email faculty and staff if you need assistance. We are all online, working from home. We are here for you and want to know how we can help you. Please visit the Gratz COVID-19 web page for updates. We will keep you informed as new information becomes available. You can share any concerns and questions at [email protected]. Keep an eye out for updates on our website, social media, and in our weekly e-newsletter, Coming Up at Gratz. You can contact me directly at [email protected].
Your passion and dedication to one another during this time of uncertainty is deeply appreciated and reflects the very best of Gratz College. Thank you.
Once again, please be careful and cautious. We will all get through this and come out stronger.