Dear Biology Majors,
We live in challenging times. As you deal with your changing schedule and way of life, I wanted to give you some updates and information that may be of value.
Life priorities: This is a time to prioritize yourself, family and friends. Set up a daily schedule that includes time for exercise and taking the time to obtain resources safely. Family and friends over 60 may need help shopping. Maintain social distance and be logical about cleanliness issues. Here is an excellent link detailing how to grocery shop safely.
Research and Career issues: At this point, undergraduates are not allowed in the Rankin Complex. Please talk to your mentor and/or advisor about virtual research opportunities. Proceed with applications for internships, but maintain a “plan B” to deal with extension of the crisis into the summer. Use this time to work on self-improvement projects that you have had on the back burner. Figure out how to turn lemons into lemonade. Here is a good article on COVID19 with some speculation about how long this will continue.
Food insecurity: I wanted to make sure you were aware of resources on campus to assist you. The Dean of Students office has a Case Management capability (see https://casemanagement.appstate.edu/ ) and other resources that may be useful. Below is a link to a list of resources in the Boone area (best to call before going to check for hours). Please pass this information on to fellow students.
If you have difficulty finding resources, let me know. Thanks.
Mental and emotional health: Be intentional about maintaining your mental and emotional health. Reach out to friends and family using virtual tools like Zoom and Skype. The University is maintaining virtual counseling services.
Please remember that the Department of Biology is your academic home. We are here to help you, but you will need to let us know what help you need. Please let me know if you have questions or concerns.
Chair, Department of Biology