President Pinto: Looking ahead to 2022
UC President Neville G. Pinto shared the below message with the campus community
Dear UC Community,
A heartfelt thanks to the entire UC community for facing what continues to be unprecedented times with courage, focus and resilience. Our university community has found countless ways to rise above the challenges presented by the pandemic. Never was that more evident than during our fall semester.
Our return to in-person learning last semester saw many wonderful accomplishments. Among the encouraging moments, UC College of Medicine doctors helped break ground on what will be a world-class emergency department at the UC Medical Center. Francis Cullen, emeritus professor in the School of Criminal Justice, won the Stockholm Prize, the world’s most prestigious award in the field of criminology. The College of Law celebrated a final-beam ceremony in advance of moving into their new building in the months ahead.
As I shared with you in my year-in-review, there were many reasons to count 2021 as a historic year, including signature investments in diversity, equity and inclusion and welcoming our first cohort of NEXT Innovation Scholars.
As we begin the new year, the pandemic has once again forced us to respond to fresh challenges with resilience. I’m appreciative that students, faculty and staff have successfully adjusted to begin the spring semester online in response to the Omicron variant. To learn more about these details, please review the January 4 announcement. I especially want to thank Provost Valerio Ferme and Dr. Dustin Calhoun for their steadfast leadership of our Covid Response Team.
We have so much to look forward to in 2022, including our return to in-person learning on Monday, January 24. There is a palpable energy that accompanies our busy campus and classrooms enlivened by the exchange of ideas.
Work on important construction projects will continue, including the Center for Identity and Inclusion. The new center in the heart of campus in the Joseph A. Steger Student Life Building will provide enhanced space and offerings for identity-based groups. By year’s end, we will cut the ribbon on the new Digital Futures Complex in the Cincinnati Innovation District. This complex will host a community of experts who partner with government, industry and the community to deliver solutions to the real problems impacting people’s lives.
On the student front, I’m encouraged by news that our admissions team had received a near record number of applications already by mid-December. Among all those future Bearcats, we will also welcome our first class of Marian Spencer Scholars in the fall.
As we prepare to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day Monday, I find it appropriate to mention human rights activist Desmond Tutu, who died on December 26 at age 90. The 1984 Nobel Peace Prize winner was called the Martin Luther King of South Africa. He referred to himself as “a prisoner of hope.”
Despite countless challenges, he never lost hope that his country would eventually overcome apartheid. May we follow in Tutu’s example as a community full of hope and kindness — each of us there for one another even during difficult times.
I hope your semester is off to a wonderful start.
Neville G. Pinto
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