Re: Welcome to UC Merced
To: All students
Aug. 25, 2020
I want to welcome you to a new semester and academic year — one that begins under novel conditions but offers an opportunity for greatness, should we choose to seize it.
Those of you who are returning to UC Merced have some experience navigating through your courses and academic duties — we lean on you to lead the way.
To those joining our community as new students: We are all here to walk with you through the journey that lies ahead.
We know that the path will be winding and sometimes unpredictable. This pandemic has a way of shaking things up just as we believe we have it under control. However, we will build strength and resilience as we learn to improvise, adapt and overcome. We will build camaraderie and learn to rely on each other — and although one may be struggling, two can stand together. I encourage you all to get plugged in to your Dens and stay connected to each other as much as possible during this time.
Our operations may be largely virtual, but they can still be hugely impactful. For those who are bravely coming to campus, the world will someday thank you for the many essential contributions you will make to society. I am heartened and impressed the more I learn about the amazing work done by UC Merced students and their faculty mentors — you are taking us deeper into our exploration of space , leading us toward solutions to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 , helping to slow climate change and aiding reforestation efforts after the devastating wildfires brought about by our warming climate.
To you new students, take a look at what your peers are accomplishing — even in the midst of a pandemic and a historic moment in our nation. You will soon be working alongside them and making history as well.
As we cross this unsteady terrain side by side, let’s remain focused on what brought us to UC Merced. Let’s hold each other close and keep our eyes on the horizon. We will get through the challenges that lie ahead. We will do it together. We will emerge stronger.
Please reach out to the Students First Center team should you have any questions, concerns or needs of any kind. We are here to support you and the important work you will be doing at UC Merced.
Juan Sánchez Muñoz, Ph.D.