August 20, 2020
Lacy K. Ford, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, shared this message with the college's students to mark the beginning of the Fall 2020 semester.
Welcome back to the University of South Carolina and the College of Arts and Sciences! Whether you are taking classes on campus or remotely, in a large lecture hall or in a hybrid format, we are excited to begin another semester with you.
This is certainly the most unusual semester that you or I or any of your professors have experienced. We are all learning together how to operate in this new environment. Still, I want to thank all the faculty and staff in the college. They have worked tremendously hard this spring and summer to give you an educational experience that is second to none. I hope that you will have an excellent experience this fall.
This semester presents an opportunity to grow and prepare for your future. I recall that Viktor Frankl, a Holocaust survivor, said that our “last human freedom” is the ability to “chose one’s attitude, …. To choose one’s own way.” I hope that you will be engaged in your classes, regardless of the delivery method. Ask questions of your professors. Challenge yourself to learn more. Also, now is the time to plan ahead for the rest of your academic experience. Visit, or contact, the Student Excellence Collaborative in Flinn Hall to explore future opportunities for study abroad and internships. Meet with career development staff to discuss your long-term goals and how you can work toward them today. You can make this semester a positive experience.
Whether you are taking classes on campus or remotely, in a large lecture hall or in a hybrid format, we are excited to begin another semester with you.
— Dean Lacy K. Ford
As we come together this semester, it is important to abide by university policies and common-sense public health guidelines to limit the spread of COVID-19. When you wear a face covering, wash your hands regularly, and maintain physical distance, you are helping to protect yourself and others. Do these things off-campus as well as on-campus. You are helping your community remain healthy.
We do have much to look forward to this semester. We are holding our inaugural Theme Semester, which focuses on justice. There are more than a dozen Theme Semester classes, and we also have events throughout the semester related to civil rights, women’s suffrage, elections, and other topics related to justice. I encourage you to participate in these events and reflect on the many ways justice connects with aspects of your life.
This semester presents an opportunity to grow and prepare for your future. ... You can make this semester a positive experience.
— Dean Lacy K. Ford
In the coming weeks, you will see several communications to help us stay in touch, including newsletters, virtual events, and social media activity to celebrate the accomplishments of your fellow students and your faculty. There will be art exhibitions, online theatre and dance performances, and other opportunities to enjoy what the college has to offer. Please engage with the college online. Even though we can’t gather in all the ways we are accustomed to doing, we can still come together as a community.
Forever to Thee,
Lacy K. Ford
Dean, College of Arts and Sciences