Bringing It

Dear friends,

As we have lived through the events of the past few weeks—the murder of George Floyd, the police violence, the mounting protest movement, the larger context of a pandemic, and an economic crisis that disproportionately harms black lives—it has been hard to know what to say. It’s been hard to find words adequate to the moment and the feelings of horror, grief, exhaustion, and hope that we and others have felt. But here is a start.

Dear friends,

In this week’s Bringing It, we focus on all the good work that members of the BTtoP network have been doing—and continue to do in the face of the health and social crises of the pandemic.

Dear friends,

As the semester ends but the pandemic doesn’t, the higher-ed conversation is changing. “How do I make this Zoom thing work?” has given way to “Will my institution be able to open for face-to-face learning in the fall?” For many, too, there are harder questions: “How many lay-offs will there be? How can I protect my health and that of my family?” We hope that you and yours--including your colleagues and students--are able to be safe and supported as you grapple with these issues.

Dear friends, 

ICYM Our Last Issue of Bringing It...

In this time of technological scrambling, we had an IT mini-crisis of our own when we tried to send out Bringing It #36 two weeks ago. It turns out that many of you didn’t receive it. We’ve now solved the problem and you can read our last issue here.

Dear friends, 

We’re not sure if it seems this way to you, but trying to absorb all the advice and resources about COVID-19 and higher ed is starting to feel like drinking from a firehose. Not to mention all the hours on Zoom and all the guides about teaching online. Frankly we are in awe of the heroic speed, energy, and nimbleness with which faculty and staff have responded to the emergency through remote teaching and student support. This should put the lie once and for all to the canard about higher ed’s inability to adapt creatively.

Dear friends,

While all of us shelter in place, trying to stem or slow the pandemic, it’s more important than ever that we stay connected to and supportive of each other. The BTtoP staff are scattered right now in North Carolina (Caitlin), Oklahoma (Mercedes), New Hampshire (Kate), and Michigan (David). But we are one in the hope that you are safe and healthy. And we want to stay connected with you as you navigate the educational needs of the emergency we’re all facing.

Dear friends,

This issue of Bringing It features two reflections. Our friend Jessica Lax at Ashoka U describes the ideas that are guiding the important work she and her colleagues are beginning on climate change education. And David reflects on the fact college presidents are issuing a spate of important new books on the future of higher education.

What Our Partners Are Doing: Educating Students on Climate Change

Dear friends, 

We are excited by your responses to recent issues of Bringing It. We’ve heard strong agreement with Brian Murphy’s post (published in last week’s number), which asked, “How does higher education play a positive role [in confronting climate change]?” Here Gray Kochhar-Lindgren of the University of Hong Kong (HKU) shares his university's efforts:

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