Today, University of Nebraska at Omaha Chancellor Jeffrey P. Gold, M.D., is welcoming students, faculty, and staff back to campus today and ringing in the start of the Fall 2020 semester.
“In order to make this semester a success, we need to count on each other to do the little things – to wear a mask, to keep physical distance, to wash your hands, to use the 1-Check COVID (1-Check UNO) app daily – and above all to be patient and to be kind,” Gold said.
A full transcript of the video can be found below. In the video message, Gold asks the university community to visit the Fall Forward planning website, which has resources that include:
- Fall 2020 Campus Guidance
- Preparedness Checklists
- Health and Safety Instructional Videos
- The Maverick COVID Commitment
- Interim Face Covering Policy
- 1-Check UNO Screening App
The safety and success of the entire Maverick community is dependent on all of us working together and staying committed to combating COVID-19. If you have any questions about this semester, visit the Fall Forward FAQ page for additional information.
Full Welcome Message Transcript
Hello. I’m Chancellor Jeff Gold and it is my honor to welcome you to a new academic year here at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, home of the Mavericks, home of the Maverick Spirit. Whether you’re a returning student, member of our faculty or a staff member, or whether you’re a new Maverick, we’re thrilled that you are part of our community.
The start of the Fall 2020 semester will be different than what we’re used to. But it’s one we have carefully prepared for now for over five months with all of your feedback. I encourage you to visit the UNO Fall Forward web page for all of the information and the resources that you need to stay well and to stay on track towards your academic and professional goals amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Please also keep a very close eye on our Mav Daily, Bullseye, and our frequent informational video updates. We’re constantly planning and changing to optimize your safety and the effectiveness of your campus experience.
To be sure, this pandemic has kept many of us apart in recent months, but it has not slowed us down. We may be physically distanced, but we’re also tightly connected in so many many different ways.
To share with you just a few examples of how powerful the Maverick Spirit can be, even in a remote environment, for instance, we secured nearly $32 million in research funding last year, including the NCITE grant, one of ten U.S. centers enhancing global cybersecurity. Our students achieved record high academic outcomes thanks to our innovative digital learning and academic support staff. Another example is that our Scott Scholars were critical to the development of our 1-Check COVID (1-Check UNO) app. This fall, we’ve got record enrollment for first-time, transfer and returning students, as well as several of our new scholarship programs, such as the Nebraska Promise, the Chancellor’s Scholarship, the Healthcare Heroes Scholarship with expanded access to hundreds of new students across all departments and colleges. We have embarked on an innovative partnership now with Union Pacific and others, which will welcome even more individuals from our community to the Maverick community.
So on September 9th, 1965, United States Navy Commander James Stockdale lost his A-4 Skyhawk jet, which was shot down out of the sky during his mission in Vietnam. For the better part of the next decade, he was a prisoner in the Hanoi Hilton. And in order to survive that experience, he identified two key characteristics of not just himself, but others who were prisoners of war during this very difficult time of torture and of unimaginable stress. What he realized was those key two characteristics are the ability to stay focused on the horizon – that is your personal long-term goals and that of your colleagues, your friends and your family. In their case, to get home and to get out of captivity. In our case, to get through the pandemic with as much success as possible. And the second and equally important characteristic was to face the blatant truth, to deal with the realities of every day, and to be absolutely sure we take maximum care of ourselves and of each other.
This is known as the Stockdale Paradox, and while it was true in 1965, it’s equally true today and it’s certainly true here on the UNO campus.
Ladies and gentlemen, in order to make this semester a success, we need to count on each other to do the little things – to wear a mask, to keep physical distance, to wash your hands, to use the 1-Check COVID (1-Check UNO) app daily – and above all to be patient and to be kind.
Thank you. I wish you the very best in the fall semester, and, as always, go Mavericks!
About the University of Nebraska at Omaha
Located in one of America’s best cities to live, work and learn, the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) is Nebraska’s premier metropolitan university. With more than 15,000 students enrolled in 200-plus programs of study, UNO is recognized nationally for its online education, graduate education, military friendliness and community engagement efforts. Founded in 1908, UNO has served learners of all backgrounds for more than 100 years and is dedicated to another century of excellence both in the classroom and in the community.