President's letter to TAU staff, March 17th
Dear Faculty, administrative staff and friends,
As I write these lines it appears that – according to government directives – the University campus will close as from tomorrow, Wednesday, 18 March, and operate in emergency mode. Later on, when we have further information, we will update you as to who may enter the University despite its closure.
It is important for me to emphasize: Closing the University will not affect our plan to continue online instruction, and will in no way endanger the semester. Our duty is primarily to our students, and we intend to fulfill our obligation, both in maintaining studies and in providing other forms of assistance. We will also do our best to ensure that the damage to our research is minimal.
Our University was ahead of others in preparing for the transition to online learning, and I am pleased to report that this process is almost complete, under the supervision of the Rector and the CEO. This transition has been conducted in an exemplary fashion, and even if there are still glitches here and there, they will soon be repaired. Deans of Faculties, Heads of Schools, administrative heads and coordinators, and of course the various technical teams are doing a great job, and I am both amazed and deeply moved by what I’m witnessing. Indeed, difficult times bring out the strength in people.
During the past few days, I’ve been walking around the campus and talking with almost all the department heads (to be completed today). I have been impressed not only by the competent functioning of the academic staff but also by the effectiveness of the administrative staff. If anyone needs reminding, it is now patently clear that without the administrative staff, there can be no learning and no research. I want to assure you, my friends and members of the administrative staff, that I think about you all the time, and am determined to assist you in every way I can. All of you, administrative staff and academic staff, may contact me at any time.
I am proud to stand at the helm of Tel Aviv University these days, even more so than in routine days. Together we will overcome this crisis and emerge even more unified. This is a period of community, social solidarity, and even love.