An Update from the President and CEO
Dear CASE Colleagues,
I am incredibly grateful for the outpouring of support and encouragement that we received in response to my message to all CASE members last week. We are a global community of individuals who care deeply, and your warm words have heartened me in these difficult times. I would especially like to acknowledge the commitment of our Board of Trustees, Regional Councils and District volunteers who have provided sage counsel during many calls and communications, while also managing the crisis at their institutions. But even more than that, I am grateful that CASE members, volunteers, and staff around the world have been able to stay connected through the wonders of technology.
We are all adapting to this new reality. Digital and virtual click-ins are a pragmatic alternative to in-person meetings, but they do lack the warmth of sitting together with a cup of coffee or tea. However, there are solutions: in a recent global all-staff meeting, we encouraged participants to wear a funny, outrageous, or personally meaningful hat—and the results were splendid! That glimpse of personality that you get every day in real life was apparent on our computer screens. It made me laugh, and there’s not been enough of that lately.
Around the world, CASE members are rallying to serve their institutions in this most difficult of times.
- Alumni relations officers are united on the importance of continuing engagement and are sharing tips in the CASE alumni relations community for how to keep stakeholders engaged.
- Development professionals are reconsidering their pre-pandemic fundraising plans and are active in a community of their peers, as well as contributing ideas to a resource on how to be effective during a crisis.
- Marketing/communications professionals are intensely engaged communicating about the impact of campus closures and postponed or cancelled commencement ceremonies.
- And professionals of all disciplines are actively using the CASE COVID-19 website to keep track of new sector updates: www.case.org/covidresources.
The current crisis underscores the importance of academic research, real expertise, and the necessity for decisions to be grounded in facts. In the midst of the reality and the anxiety created by the pandemic, one positive conclusion is clear: education matters. Working together to advance education to transform lives and society, CASE members play a vital role in sustaining and championing the institutions you serve. These are undoubtedly difficult times, but we are all working to ensure that we will get through them stronger.
In our colleges and universities, researchers are hard at work pursuing the development of a novel coronavirus vaccine. Medical professionals—highly trained doctors, nurses, pharmacists, therapists, and the like—are simultaneously caring for COVID-19 patients and launching clinical trials that might reduce the severity of the disease. Public health experts are collaborating with public and private sector leaders to develop and explain pandemic mitigation policies. And in schools, colleges, and universities around the world, faculty members are delving into the world of digital instruction, providing displaced students with the robust interaction that they had experienced in the classroom.
Our focus at CASE is threefold – supporting our members, our staff, and CASE itself. I am grateful for the understanding and guidance that so many of you have expressed. This is particularly true of those who have patiently supported us through our conference postponements, transition to virtual delivery, and—when there was no other choice—cancellation.
In addition to repurposing previous content, we are also building out new offerings and I look forward to sharing those developments with you further. I am indebted to our amazing volunteers who are demonstrating their agility in these unprecedented times to help CASE better serve our community. CASE is fortunate in our ability to call on the best practitioners worldwide to support our members.
Please do be in touch if you have any questions or thoughts that you would like to share, through our communities, through social media, or directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.
With warm regards and virtual hugs,
President and CEO
Council for Advancement and Support of Education