We are almost at the conclusion of another semester. A truly challenging semester to be sure, but also so remarkable. To have been able to serve our mission this Fall in the face of enormous obstacles has been an experience of a lifetime. One that none of us thought we would have to deal. At times it was a truly harrowing experience, but it really is a significant achievement of this great institution. As I have said before, I think the last 8 months may have been our finest hour.
As we move into the Thanksgiving holiday, it might be easy to dwell on the difficult year we have been through, but I would like to encourage everyone to reflect on all the areas of life we have to be grateful for. Personally, I am so grateful for the community of Bengals that have rallied for our students this year. I am grateful for the resilient spirit of our students. And I am grateful for our future where hope is on the horizon, like the hope embodied in our hundreds of students that will receive their diplomas this December. Because, yes, through this all we can be thankful that we have hundreds of students graduating this semester.
This gratitude should also have us remember the many of our community members who endured true hardship this year. And I ask that we all take this gratitude and turn into action for others this season. There are many opportunities, through our student emergency assistance program, to contributing to our annual United Way campaign, or by simply reaching out to those you know that might be in need.
While different days of Thanksgiving had been declared by prior US Presidents, it was Abraham Lincoln who, in 1863, fixed a national day of gratitude to be in November. Even in the midst of the horrors of the Civil War, President Lincoln reminded the nation that we had reasons to be thankful. And that we could be grateful and express that gratitude to one another. As a University, I encourage everyone to find a way to do just that.
President, Idaho State University