Letter from the Executive Director: Here for You

As I write this on Monday, March 30, 2020, it’s hard to know what life will be like when this issue lands in your mailbox. While our editors and designers were working on your May|June Alcalde, the global spread of COVID-19 changed everything. 

As life continues to be on hold, thousands of University of Texas students are logging onto their laptops and beginning an experimental chapter of their college career. President Fenves has just announced on Twitter that the Tower will be lit tonight to celebrate our students and their first day of online classes. The traditional commencement ceremony is postponed, but a virtual celebration is in the works.   

For the Class of 2020, this will be it—their last semester on the Forty Acres. I have twin daughters, both members of this graduating class at different universities. My wife and I are keeping their spirits up, but there is a sense of melancholy in our home. The photo ops we have imagined since they were born will be different and delayed, like so many other milestones and events.   

My kids are going to be just fine, and like their counterparts on the UT campus, they have perspective. There are low moments these days, but they are punctuated by the laughter I hear coming from our back deck, as one of my daughters catches up with her friends on a video chat. They both feel sad, but the bonds they’ve made in college are getting them through. There is suffering and uncertainty everywhere we look—but there is also resilience. 

This issue is dedicated to the Class of 2020. We asked alumni to send messages of encouragement, advice, personal stories, and wisdom to our newest Texas Exes and the response was overwhelming. Head here to read them.  

These Longhorns are graduating during a time that will define many generations. But I have no doubt they will overcome these challenges and teach us all something new. As they move on to whatever is next, let’s make sure they feel the love and support of 500,000 Longhorns all around the world. You did it, y’all. (You did it, girls!) Welcome to the club.    

Hook ’em, 

Chuck Harris, BBA ’86, Life Member 

 
 
 

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