Happy Summertime Greetings:
At last…I can’t believe it…we survived the academic year!
And now, July Fourth is upon us and it’s time to celebrate the birth of the nation (our Independence) and, of course, enjoy another three-day holiday weekend signaling the launch of summer vacations, gatherings with friends and family, and outdoor activities!!
In many respects, I hope we can treat this summer like no other in recent memory! It is finally post- COVID 19, and a significant step away from the health precautions and social and economic restrictions that were necessary over the past year or more. Although there may still be a need for health monitoring and some restrictions to make sure we are fully “out of the woods,” it’s still good to see the “light at the end of the tunnel.”
But, as a College, things don’t stop! We have a full line up of summer classes being offered ranging from Policing in America, International Criminal Justice Systems, Urban Environments, Geographic Information Systems, Family Law, Juvenile Law, Political Ideas and Ideologies, International Laws and Organizations, Employment Discrimination Law, Human Resource Management, Public Policy for Managers, Public Service Ethics and Leadership, Project Management in Public Procurement, Addiction, and Crisis in Environmental Health. Check out our offerings and tell a friend or a colleague! Remember…its summer study and summer fun!!
Also, lots of work is going on this summer to prepare for our next academic year! More classes, some new faculty members, new programs to be launched, internship opportunities and a full year of academic and outreach programing lies ahead. Stay tuned for these announcements and developments. The College expects and hopes to be in full swing come August 20, 2021.
Turning back to our July 4th holiday for a moment and a few fun facts:
- It’s been designated as a federal holiday since 1941, but the tradition of Independence Day celebrations goes back to the 18th century.
- On July 4th, the Continental Congress formally adopted the Declaration of Independence, but the vote for actual independence took place on July 2nd, from then on, the 4th became the day that was celebrated as the birth of American independence.
- During the early years of the republic, Independence Day was commemorated with parades, oratory, and toasting in ceremonies that celebrated the existence of the new nation.
- The tradition of setting off fireworks on the 4 of July began in Philadelphia on July 4, 1777, during the first organized celebration of Independence Day.
- The most common symbol of the holiday is the American flag, and a common musical accompaniment is “The Star-Spangled Banner,” the national anthem of the United States.
- For July 4, 2021 the President will be hosting first responders, essential workers and military service members and their families on the South Lawn of the White House for a cookout and to watch the fireworks over the National Mall.
As we head full steam into summer, let’s not forget those lost in the Pandemic and the trials and tribulations many of us faced, but perhaps most important, let’s not lose focus on our resilience as Americans of all races, colors, creeds, genders and socioeconomic statuses to get through the Pandemic. Surely there have been political, social and economic turmoil over the past few years compounded by the Pandemic and, on all fronts, we still have a long way to go as a society. But, maybe we can pause for a moment this week of July 4th and celebrate what we have, and where we are going, and embrace a hope for the future that has long defined what it means to be an American.
Enjoy your summer,
Dr. Robert W. Smith
College of Public Affairs and Administration