A message to our senior students

Message sent on February 18, 2021

President Bob Iuliano addresses the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the senior class and encourages seniors to meet with him personally.

Dear Seniors,

I want to take a moment to write to you today. Your class has been on my mind a lot this year, but especially as of late, as you settle into your final semester as Gettysburg students.

When I reflect on these past three semesters, I am deeply saddened at how intimately this pandemic has disrupted your Gettysburg College experience—from missing beloved traditions, activities, and events, to the profound changes you’ve experienced in your daily interactions with faculty and friends due to the necessity of our COVID health protocols.

In short, I know these past 11 months weren’t all that you dreamed they would be. I am so sorry for this.

Amid such obstacles and disappointments, it’s natural to feel a sense of loss, as I’m sure you do. For my part, I want to stress how deeply grateful and proud I am for how you’ve chosen to respond to these most challenging set of circumstances. In so many ways, your class has taught me about the character of this community and what it truly means to be a Gettysburgian. I admire the resolve you’ve embodied and how you continue to lead our juniors, sophomores, and first-years by the example you set—whether it be in the classroom, across our campus, in the local community, or studying remotely.

Thank you for all you do to make us better.

While recognizing the ongoing realities created by the pandemic, I want to partner with you to make your final four months as Gettysburg students as vibrant and memorable as possible. We know just how important Gettysburg traditions like Thanksgiving Dinner, Snowball, International Food Fest, 100 Days, and Senior Toast are to your senior year. We are working hard to maintain some or all of these traditions this spring, even if they may need to look different than in previous years. You will hear more about this planning soon.

In addition, I will be meeting with your class officers in the coming weeks to get their input, both about how the semester is going and how we can make your experience as dynamic as possible. To share your personal thoughts, ideas, and suggestions about the spring, I would encourage you to meet with me. I’d love to hear from you.

The pandemic will long be remembered in the history of this remarkable institution—so too will this special class. Thank you!


Bob Iuliano