May 7, 2021
To mark the last day of class, I want to wish you all the best of luck with your final exams, papers and projects. Please also join me in thanking our awesome faculty, who have so ably led you this semester in your research and learning, and our incredible staff, who keep this great university going in countless ways.
To those graduating in 2021 — congratulations, and thank you for your patience, resilience and adaptability during the past year. Recently, I saw a meme that said, “Where do you see yourself in five years? Anyone who answered that question in 2015 was way off.” It reminded me of our experience here at UT. I know this isn’t how you envisioned the end of your studies or your last semester. The post-pandemic world and workplace into which you graduate will be different, too. But I know you’ll do very well — the same abilities and attributes you brought and acquired here will get you there, too. In the meantime, I’m looking forward to seeing you at commencement in a couple of weeks.
To our non-graduating Longhorns — enjoy the summer! Rest, recharge and decompress. You can also stay sharp with a summer semester course. Either way, we look forward to seeing you in August. Our plans for the fall semester are shaping up, and we anticipate campus looking much more like 2019 than 2020. We’ll be communicating with you closely during the summer so you’ll have all the details. Our twin goals remain the same: doing our part to Protect Texas Together and recapturing the residential college experience that we all cherish. Having as many members of our Longhorn community as possible receive the COVID-19 vaccination will help us get there. If you have not already been vaccinated, you can take advantage of this opportunity on campus or by searching for a place in your local community.
To all our students — you’ve nearly done it. Again. Like last semester and the one before, you’re pushing through and persevering during a(nother) one-of-a-kind academic year. I couldn’t be prouder of you.