I had a different editor’s message written for this spring issue of Wider Horizons – one that talked about the amazing support available to staff and students here at Lethbridge College, and how lucky I felt to work in such a setting. I was moved to write that first message after an unfortunate encounter in February with a fast-flying volleyball left me with a broken nose and a concussion. During my recovery, I experienced wonderful support from across campus – and I know that this kind of support is all just part of the LC experience.
Since then. Well. We still have amazing support for students and staff. I still feel so lucky to work in such a setting. But somehow that cheery message didn’t seem to fit as well following the emergence of the COVID-19 global pandemic, an event that moved college courses out of the classroom, colleagues to work at home and Convocation to be cancelled. In a flash, we suddenly found ourselves living in a different world.
There is so much happening that it is hard to take it all in – and we will likely face even more challenges in the weeks and months to come. But I think it’s still important – even in the midst of adjusting to this new normal – that we raise a virtual glass and toast the Class of 2020. Here’s to our hardworking students who will not get that wonderful moment in the spotlight at Convocation, when an entire community applauds their accomplishments, perseverance and grit. Grads – we will cheer for you from our homes, both on Convocation Day and as you head into your futures. Congratulations on your graduation. The entire Lethbridge College community is so proud of you and all you’ve accomplished during your time in our programs – and especially for the fortitude and flexibility you showed these last weeks.
It feels a little strange to write this message not knowing how much our college, city, province and world will change by the time I send it to our designer (mid-March), the time we go to press (early April) and the time this magazine lands in your mailbox (late April or early May). I have to admit, I am a bit worried about what will be happening around the globe by the time you pick this up to read it. And my colleagues and I considered a lot of different options about how to move forward with this and so many parts of our working lives. But at the end of every discussion, we came back to the fact that this issue of Wider Horizons in particular is focused so much on the experiences of our students and their amazing character, good humour and resilience. Those are stories that still need to be shared – perhaps even more so when many of the familiar experiences of final exams and crossing the stage are missing.
We thank you for helping us celebrate the milestones of our students and mark these moments of true achievement with joy. And the graduation of more than 1,500 Lethbridge College students – whether they walk across a stage or walk to the mailbox to pick up their credential – is one of the most joyful milestones of all. Congratulations, Class of 2020. We are so proud of you.
As always, thanks for reading – and more than ever, I hope you and your families and friends are well.
Lisa Kozleski, Editor