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Tufts Public Health

Message from Dean Aviva Must

Aviva Must speaking with two students while sitting on a couch
Thursday, May 14, 2020

Dear PHPD students, faculty and staff,

In any “normal” year, tonight would be our awards dinner. All of us would be donning our elegant evening wear and getting ready to celebrate our award winners and all the graduates. The buzz of excitement, an evening at a fancy venue, soon-to-be alumni toasting each other for their accomplishments; these truly made our annual award dinner a special occasion.

As we know, this spring is far from normal, but this year, more than most, there is much to take pride in. The graduates and their fellow students rose to the occasion, and then some, as we abruptly moved from our snug campus to be strewn from coast to coast, and across oceans. This required finishing the spring semester in your residences, often in makeshift work- spaces, negotiating with roommates or family members for space, quiet, and wifi; for some students, it meant coping with suddenly feeling alone. Many of us learned the many meanings of “not having enough bandwidth.” You did well! As did the faculty and staff who supported you (also from home), doing everything in their collective power to ensure you completed your course requirements, successfully and with quality.

With the academic year drawing to a close, I want to thank you—students, staff, and faculty, for your moxie: facing adversity with determination and fortitude. I am both proud and grateful for the flexibility and adaptability you’ve evidenced, and how hard you’ve all worked.

To our graduates: we wish you every success in your future endeavors and look forward to celebrating with you on Sunday.

To our continuing students: keep up the great attitude and hard work. We are here for you.

To faculty and staff: deep appreciation for rising to every occasion with grace and creativity.

Aviva Must, Ph.D.
Dean, Public Health Programs & Professional Degree Programs
Tufts University School of Medicine