A Message From Director Waisbord Regarding Fall Semester

July 29, 2020

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Greetings SMPA community,

We are reaching out to all of you in light of the recent decision by The George Washington University to hold classes online in Fall 2020. 

We understand these are very tough circumstances for everyone. We would all prefer to be safely on campus this Fall. Unfortunately, that will not be possible. We are committed to making the Fall 2020 SMPA experience rewarding and enriching despite the current challenges. We are in this together, and we will make it work as a community.

Thanks to the high number of responses from students to our recent questionnaire about Fall 2020 planning, we already have a good sense of many of your needs and expectations. We will continue to keep lines of communication open. We care about what you have to say. 

The faculty are adjusting courses to an online format. We will pay special attention to those courses such as production and editing that present unique challenges for online learning. We will work with GW to provide support to faculty and students for successful online teaching and learning. 

It will be important to use different software and participatory tools to promote active learning and engagement, and personalized learning/instruction. Many students and alumni have always valued close interaction with faculty as a special aspect of GW and SMPA. We know that replicating the classroom experience, especially small class discussion, is quite different online, but we will do our best to deliver quality education that attends to students’ needs and learning styles.

Everyone is facing different challenges during this pandemic - and some challenges are greater than others. We will adopt a flexible approach that is sensitive to students' location, time zone, technology access, family responsibilities, and other stressors. Please reach out to faculty if you believe that there are particular conditions that affect your learning and participation. 

We will continue to support students' career opportunities and networking. We will hold events that are an integral part of the SMPA experience. 

Your future is bright even though these are unprecedented, troubling times. Together, we’ll get through this.  

You can always reach us at [email protected] or [email protected]


Silvio Waisbord

Director, SMPA