Welcome back to the fall 2022 semester! As we came in the door today, another CAT staff member commented on how great it feels to see students on campus again. And we have been seeing faculty for a few weeks now, in our virtual lab, in person on campus, and in workshops. Last week, I was walking back from a session for new faculty in Shusterman Hall and I saw five faculty and staff whom I know. I stopped to talk with each one, reveling in the beauty of speaking face-to-face with my colleagues—so it took a long time to get across campus!! After the isolation of the pandemic, I’m not sure I’ll ever again take for granted the ability to get together with others or just run into them serendipitously because we cross each other’s paths. At the same time, we got pretty good at connecting with each other via Zoom, didn’t we? We figured out how to have virtual family and friend get-togethers, even virtual parties (I went to a baby shower over Zoom), and we certainly appreciated the convenience of having a meeting with someone without having to traipse across campus in the snow.
Whether you connect with us and with each other in person (and I’ll admit that my extrovert self really craves in-person contact, so come visit!!) or virtually (we love seeing you, no matter the modality!), the important thing is that we are all engaging with each other meaningfully and supportively in our university community. If you read the CAT’s EDvice Exchange blog, you’ll remember that my final blog entry for last academic year was to exhort you to dedicate 2022-2023 to building a community of colleagues who are committed to excellence in teaching. Take a minute to read that blog entry again to refresh your memory; I hope it inspires you to take the first steps towards building your community.
One way to start is by connecting with CAT happenings. We provide a number of ways for you to engage with us and with each other. You can come to our centers in person on our main campus, health sciences campus, or Ambler campus to see a faculty developer for a consultation, sit with an educational technology specialist in the lab, or attend a workshop. You can also have a virtual consultation, attend a virtual workshop, or drop into the virtual lab for support with educational technology. You can find information on all these services on our website. So join our CAT community or form one of your own this semester. Let’s keep those connections alive!
From the entire CAT staff to you, our best wishes for a strong and energizing beginning of the semester.
Stephanie Fiore serves as Assistant Vice Provost of Temple's Center for the Advancement of Teaching.