View from Spilman

School of Art and Design assistant professor Gabe Duggan

School of Art and Design assistant professor Gabe Duggan gives instructions during an art installation class Aug. 17.

Safe and sustainable

I met with a group of Honors College students in October who want to create a sustainable, edible landscape on campus. Fruits and vegetables and orchards. They’re so serious they’re creating a business plan on how that can work at ECU.

That got me thinking that as we move through this pandemic, sustainability is going to be the key. We have to operate in a way that will allow us to keep campus open. Looking at the spring  semester, which starts Jan. 19, we’re taking steps such as requiring students to have a negative COVID-19 test within seven days of move-in for those living on campus, weekly testing of students who live in our residence halls and setting aside beds in two residence halls for quarantine and isolation.

It’s been a very difficult time we’ve coped with since last March. Our faculty, staff and students have been adaptive, creative and nimble. We even set a record retention rate of 84% from the fall 2019 semester to fall 2020. A resilient group of Pirates for sure! Now we have to sustain our success.

We Pirates might be too far apart for our liking during the time of COVID-19, but also know Pirates come together to achieve our goals and take nothing for granted.

Ron Mitchelson, Ph.D.
Interim chancellor