2021-22: Another Academic Year Come and Gone

No matter how much we might wish otherwise, all good things must come to an end. It’s the last day of another semester at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy. As final examinations get under way, some students are turning their attention to the next academic year while others (like me) prepare to venture out into the world with the skills they’ve learned. 

The end of a school year can feel bittersweet. We look forward to a brief respite from the stresses of academic life, the constant deadlines, and the routine of class schedules. At the same time, we know all too well the sense that the book is closing on a distinct chapter in our lives. 

This bittersweetness is present in any year, but perhaps particularly at the end of this one. Coming off two semesters disrupted by the pandemic, we finally had the chance to return to Weill Hall and learn alongside one another rather than through the confines of a computer screen. We were able to attend in-person gatherings, laugh at each other’s stories, and commiserate about the challenges we faced. After a period of extraordinary upheaval, we got to experience the joy of genuine human connection. 

Despite the curveballs we’ve seen as a community, state, country, and world, in many ways this year has been a gift for those of us fortunate enough to spend time at this special place. It isn’t often in life we have the opportunity to spend two years surrounded by passionate, dedicated future leaders committed to creating a better world. 

As I look back on my two years at Ford, I’m exceedingly grateful for the kind, talented individuals I’ve met, the lessons I’ve learned, and the commitment this community has shown to meaningfully improving people’s lives.

With my time coming to an end here at Ford, my thoughts turn to our incoming cohort and the countless future Fordies down the road. This school has offered a warm, welcoming environment in which I have learned, laughed, and thrived. For every person who chooses to study at this remarkable institution, I hope you find the same sense of belonging and community that I have. Go Blue.