By Jordan Beach 

Looking forward to an academic year that is sure to bring many unique changes, Reinhardt’s traditions will remain while adapting to new protocols – starting with the State of the University Address.

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Dr. Mark Roberts

Interim President Mark A. Roberts began the 2020-21 academic year with the University Address on Zoom this year, rather than the Falany Performing Arts Center’s Flint Hall, where it’s been held in years past. Roberts used the Address on Aug. 10 to reinforce Reinhardt’s mission and values, along with providing updates on “New Normal” protocols.

After welcoming new faculty and staff, Roberts discussed Reinhardt University’s response to COVID-19, giving an overview of the protocols in place for the upcoming semester. He explained Reinhardt’s color-coded alert system and the efforts being made to keep the campus safe. For more information on the “New Normal” protocols, please visit Reinhardt.edu/Back-to-campus.

As Reinhardt learns to adapt to new challenges brought on by the pandemic, several ongoing projects will allow students at Reinhardt to learn in new and exciting ways, such as the Lightboard Studio, crafted by the Center for Innovative Teaching and Engaged Learning. The Lightboard Studio enables faculty to record video lessons in a visual way, much like using a white board in the classroom.

Roberts hopes to move forward into the year with four key values:

  • Embracing challenges as opportunities to learn, innovate and collaborate
  • Connecting with one another as co-educators to better serve the educational needs of all students
  • Tapping into inner resources to advance the institution self-reliance
  • Sharing time, talent and treasure to support students, colleagues and the University

Roberts explained that the source of these values came from the Reinhardt community. He wants to move forward with these values because they have already been exhibited since the University first transitioned to distance learning in March and continued adapting throughout the year in preparation of Fall 2020.

Roberts thanked faculty and staff who made the spring transition possible, including, those who continued to serve students unable to return home that needed to quarantine on campus. Once all Eagles returned home during the summer, Reinhardt maintenance and facilities teams were able to complete several projects and prepare for an academic year with new guidelines. One project that took place off campus was the completion of the Jasper campus for the Cauble School of Nursing & Health Sciences.

Reinhardt is grateful to all who have been looking forward to the upcoming semester with innovative ways to offer our students the safest environment as students live and learn together.