Dear Marietta College Community,

As winter break comes to a close, I hope you were able to relax and spend time with family and friends — in the best way you can during a pandemic. Today we would typically be honoring the life and legacy of the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with a day of service and reflection, but our traditional plans will have to be put on hold until we can all safely gather again in large groups.

Thank you for returning to Marietta College for our Spring 2021 semester and for bringing with you an energy and spirit that brings our beautiful campus to life. If you are new to Marietta, I want to take this opportunity to welcome you and encourage you to get involved in Greek Life, with a club or organization, or simply take a moment this week to introduce yourself to someone and make a new friend.

Our Fall 2020 semester was unlike anything we have experienced before. We faced some challenges due to COVID-19, but I am proud of the way we came together as a family and persevered. We also learned some valuable lessons that should help us make this semester even better.

Like many of you, I wish I could say everything is back to normal. However, even as millions of people across the country and world are starting to receive a vaccination for COVID-19, we must remain as vigilant as ever to protect ourselves, our campus, and our community. We will continue to follow the Marietta College Cocktail: properly wearing our facemasks, frequently washing our hands, maintaining safe physical distancing, and monitoring for symptoms.

We are also excited for the return of intercollegiate athletics, even if we will not be able to allow fans to attend in person. We will livestream as many home contests as we can.

Finally, coming back after a break can be exciting, but also a bit daunting. It helps to put in the hard work in your classes and engage with your professors and classmates. Still, it is not uncommon to become a bit overwhelmed. If you need to, please reach out to the many resources we offer. We are here to help.

I wish you great success during the upcoming weeks and months of studying, learning, researching, and competing, and I look forward to seeing you thrive on campus this semester.

Bring Forth a Pioneer!

Bill Ruud
President and Professor of Management