Student Welcome from Dean Nancy Pollock-Ellwand

It is my pleasure to welcome you to the College of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture! Despite the challenges of the pandemic and moving back to our classes and our building in stages, I am excited about the year ahead and what it holds for CAPLA and for you, and how we will all grow during our time together.

Know that we have done and are doing everything within our power to keep you and our faculty and staff safe, whether that’s in studio, in the classroom, or in the field. Your safety and success are our top priorities, in our college.

This semester will be different for all of us. We’d love for it to be a return to normal but that won’t be the case, just yet. Undoubtedly, there will be stress, I want to urge you to approach the semester in a spirit of adventure and flexibility.  This is what life is about!

We will all have successes and failures, but nothing we will face cannot be overcome, and as they say, “Keep Calm and Carry On”.   We achieve this, if we ensure we are kind and respectful to each other. Supporting each other is at the heart of what the CAPLA community is about—and I urge you not only to be supportive, but to reach out to your advisors or instructors if you have concerns, or if you are concerned about a fellow student. We are here for you, but we don’t always know if you need help, so don’t be afraid to tell us.

There is a lot happening at CAPLA this year. I want to mention a few initiatives, in particular. First, we take seriously our responsibility to foster an environment of equity, diversity, and inclusion. We are implementing several measures this year in support of social and racial justice, including required training for all faculty and staff, and if you have concerns—or would like to play a larger role, such as joining the college’s Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee—please reach out to me and I will connect you to the right people.

Second, all of our public events this fall and perhaps into the spring, will be virtual.  BUT attending these events and participating in networking opportunities around them is a very important part of your experience here – you will learn lots, meet others, and advance you education further in the built environment.

In addition, to this, here are a list of other things to do:

  • Become a member of one of our outstanding student organizations.
  • Attend School of Architecture and School of Landscape Architecture and Planning lectures.
  • Participate in HeadSPACE wellness activities.
  • Be a part of the mentoring experience, either as a mentee or a mentor.

My major advice to you:

It is easy to become isolated in this virtual world we’re living in, so actively work against that—the payoff will be immense, and you’ll have a richer experience because of your involvement.

You are entering an amazing time of your life, studying in rigorous academic programs. So, be sure to take care of yourself and don’t forget to have fun!

Thank you for becoming an essential part of the CAPLA community, and have a wonderful semester!