President Lee Pelton spoke with WGBH’s Arun Rath this week about the return to campus this fall, as student move-in is well underway. He says Emerson and area higher education institutions worked extremely hard this past five months to create plans that are “quite extraordinary” to adapt and reinvent in the midst of COVID-19.
Pelton trusts Emerson students to follow the community compact to follow COVID-19 safety precautions and guidelines.
President Pelton also joined Boston Magazine editor Chris Vogel and Lesley’s Janet Steinmayer; Roxbury Community College’s Valerie Roberson; edX’s Anant Agarwal, and UMass’s Marty Meehan to discuss what the future of higher education may look like 15 years from now.
Among the topics covered are online learning, a renewed call for civil justice, and demographic shifts in upcoming graduating high school seniors.
Pelton on a tip to share with other college presidents regarding the past six months:
I think the challenge for us is that as leaders, we’ve been so engaged since March on the viral pandemic. And we’ve been focused on reopening plans in the fall, understanding and measuring the financial impact on our colleges and universities, and putting into place mitigation efforts that do as little harm as possible to people who work and study and learn here. I think the challenge for us is to be able to find a moment when we can really turn our attention to the future and how we would like to reimagine the future. If we don’t collectively and individually as institutions change, then we’ve really let an opportunity slip away from us.