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Responding to the Coronavirus

February 7, 2020

Dear students, staff and faculty,

Over the past several weeks, we have watched a global health emergency unfold as nations grapple with the spread of the new coronavirus.

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) do not believe those in Massachusetts to be at risk, we nonetheless recognize the effect that the coronavirus has had on our community—especially on our students and colleagues from China.

I urge you all to remember that the human toll of this virus extends beyond those who have been infected. Many within our community are watching from afar as the borders to their homeland are closed; as their families navigate cities under quarantine; and as fear of the unknown fuels growing xenophobia.

At times when prejudice and racism threaten to divide us, we must bring even greater resolve to building community and supporting one another. Smith College stands by and with its Asian and Asian American community members and will continue to counter misinformation and bias about the coronavirus with information and education.


Kathleen McCartney