Feb. 24, 2021
Dear Student Affairs Team,
My heart and mind are with each of you as we navigate the aftermath of these historic winter storms. As we continue to recover both personally and professionally, I hope the circumstances for you and your families are improving with the return of power and water.
I also want to thank our many staff members who rolled up their sleeves to help take care of students during this catastrophic weather event. Some of you braved the roads and stayed overnight on campus. Others worked remotely, some without power and/or water. Many of you worked around the clock despite your own personal emergencies. Our efforts these last several days have been so impactful.
We successfully provided warm meals to thousands of students who were not part of our normal meal plans. We provided temporary on-campus emergency housing to more than 100 students who were from neighborhoods across the city. We quickly opened our 24/7 warming centers at the Texas Union and Gregory Gym, and another open until midnight at the San Jacinto Residence Hall. These warm spaces gave thousands of students a place to recover, pick up bottled water and charge their devices.
We also set up off-campus bottled water distribution stations for students north and south of campus. We processed $16,250 so far in Student Emergency Fund support for students with food-related needs. We secured food delivery to restock our UT Outpost food pantry this week. We provided telehealth and telecounseling visits for students during part of this campus closure. We also worked to restart our COVID-19 vaccinations and Proactive Community Testing on Monday after having to cancel these services last week. We let parents and families know their students were in good hands. Social media and the university’s emergency website were constantly up-to-date with information about our services and facilities.
These efforts are appreciated not only by students, but also by their families, and our campus community. Again, thank you for your dedication to the health and well-being of our students. I appreciate each of you.
Take good care,
Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students