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Making the Most of Thanksgiving Break

Dear Parents, Guardians and Loved Ones of Our SNC Students,

It is a great honor to serve this wonderful community as the newly appointed vice president for student affairs. When I was introduced to SNC, the first thing that struck me was the college’s mission: to provide an educational environment that fosters intellectual, spiritual and personal development by embracing the Norbertine ideal of communio. This mission, informed by the college’s three core traditions – Catholic, Norbertine and liberal arts – confirmed for me the deep commitment that our students, faculty and staff have to this campus and to the larger community.

Three-quarters of the way through the fall semester, and that commitment is as strong as ever. Our students continue to be diligently focused on their curricular and co-curricular experiences, and our community continues to show that it prioritizes the health and wellbeing of others.

During this time, as the semester nears an end and students are entrenched with academic demands to prepare for finals, they often begin to feel additional stress. As students seek ways to find a sense of balance, this is a great time for you to have a conversation with them regarding their academic experience and wellbeing. Engaging in these conversations will reinforce your support, and can provide a boost of encouragement during an intense academic period.

If your student may benefit from additional academic support, I encourage you to recommend they consult with staff from the office of academic success, support and accessibility. Reiterate the importance of adequate sleep, healthy eating, exercise and relaxation.

Many of our students are looking forward to a much-needed and well-earned Thanksgiving break, and to the comforts of home. If your student is headed home, be mindful that they have experienced a significant sense of autonomy over the past few months. You may find that you and your student now have different expectations regarding their time at home. Setting aside time together to clarify expectations can set a positive tone for a great Thanksgiving experience.

Encourage your student to keep studying over the Thanksgiving holiday. While the break gives your student a chance to catch up at home, it’s also a chance for them to refocus their energies for what’s left of the semester, including final exams.

I hope the Thanksgiving holiday will provide you with special time to connect with family and friends. As we all begin to reflect on all that we’re thankful for, I wish to express my own gratitude:

Thank you to our students for their hard work and their commitment to academic excellence.

Thank you to our faculty and staff, who worked diligently through the summer and during the fall semester to ensure a safe and healthy campus community.

Thanks to you – the parents, guardians and friends of our SNC students – for entrusting us with these incredible young adults.

And thank you to everyone for your diligence and commitment to our educational mission of educating the whole person.

Above all, I am grateful for the opportunity to work with your students, and to partner with them and you in supporting their academic goals and future dreams.

May you and those you love enjoy a blessed Thanksgiving.

Joseph J. Webb, Ph.D.
Vice President for Student Affairs

Nov. 22, 2021