Diermeier: Thank you for stepping up and supporting each other

Dear Vanderbilt community,

As we head into winter break, I want to thank you for your dedication and perseverance this semester. Each member of our community has faced the continued challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic in their own ways. Now, it is vital that we take time for ourselves over the winter break to reflect, restore, recharge and reconnect with loved ones.

Despite the disruptions we have encountered, I continue to be inspired by the shared sense of optimism, focus and determination demonstrated by every member of our Vanderbilt community. And I am truly grateful that we’ve seen steps toward a return to normalcy—from being able to celebrate cherished traditions like Founders Walk together, to gathering once again on our home fields and in our stadiums to cheer on the Commodores. We can all take great pride in the way this community has stepped up to support one another and to nourish our campus culture of belonging and empowerment.

We were also fortunate this year to have Cybele Raver join Vanderbilt as our new provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs. Working with Vanderbilt’s exceptional faculty, Provost Raver has already begun the crucial work to further enhance our research excellence and empowering education that lie at the heart of our mission.

As we look ahead to 2022, many challenges remain on the horizon, including the new and emerging variants of the coronavirus. If you have not yet obtained your booster shot and are eligible, I strongly encourage you to do so. We will continue to work closely with our colleagues at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, the School of Nursing and other public health experts to assess the situation throughout the winter break. The continued evolution of this pandemic is a stark reminder of why the kind of innovative thinking and search for solutions that happen every day at Vanderbilt is more important than ever.

Our educational and research mission thrives because of our collective efforts and shared values. This holiday season, I am immensely grateful to our students, faculty, staff, families and alumni. Together, we are creating a better future for our university and beyond—and educating future leaders who will continue that work for generations to come.

Thank you, and I wish you all a great holiday season and happy new year.


Daniel Diermeier