For LSE, the start of Summer Term means moving into the next phase of our COVID-19 response, shifting from managing the immediate crisis to embedding new ways of teaching and learning, planning and delivering School activities in innovative ways, and ensuring we can serve and engage the global LSE community.
This does not mean our priorities have changed – the safety, security and wellbeing of all in our community remains paramount. I am immensely proud of how our students have adjusted to their new remote learning and assessment environment, and we are all aware of the academic and personal challenges as they continue or conclude their LSE studies. Our Student Wellbeing and Mental Health Framework outlines the ways in which we are committed to supporting our students at all times, but especially during this period.
Student Wellbeng and Mental Health Framework
Supporting our students
I would also like to reiterate my gratitude to alumni, friends and partners for supporting students and the School, including through generous philanthropy to our Student Support Funds which increase our capacity to provide emergency funding to students suffering hardship because of the impact of COVID-19. Thank you.
Student Support Funds
Thank you also to those who have expressed an interest in existing and emerging alumni volunteering opportunities. We can benefit greatly from champions in the LSE alumni network who act as virtual volunteer contributors, by sharing advice with prospective and current students, and by enhancing our community-building activity. Please do look at the ways in which you might like to get involved.
As outlined in my messages to you before Easter, we know that COVID-19 represents an enormous challenge for the social sciences to help governments and non-governmental organisations respond to the economic and societal consequences of the epidemic. Our community is contributing in so many ways to lead the social science response to COVID-19 and contribute through our expertise, research and informed analysis.
COVID-19 Resource Centre
Last week, members of LSE’s academic community co-ordinated an open letter to G20 leaders. They were joined as signatories by fellow global healthcare experts, economists and several former world leaders (including in their number, as you might expect, LSE alumni).
Virtual LSE events
You can also stay connected with LSE’s intellectual community through a series of virtual events which bring together experts to discuss the most important issues of our time. These are being livestreamed and made available as recordings. Earlier this week I was delighted to participate with Gordon Brown, Larry Summers and Andrés Velasco in one such event, co-hosted by our Institute of Global Affairs and School of Public Policy, to discuss the global response to the COVID-19 crisis.
LSE Events programme
We all have a responsibility and an opportunity to shape the future, and I am proud of what everyone in the LSE community is doing to shape a better world.
Please stay safe and stay connected with your School.
With warm wishes
Dame Minouche Shafik