From the Dean

Nov. 9, 2021

We’re back! After 17 months of relative pandemic-imposed quiet and social distancing, Jepson Hall is once again abuzz with students attending classes, holding meetings, and studying in their favorite armchairs. Gone are the hybrid-teaching classrooms, replaced with fully in-person classes and advising sessions. The hum of conversation in the hallways is music to our ears.

Several events have marked our return to some kind of normalcy: In early September, students thronged to the Jepson Student Government Association celebratory welcome-back dinner in Stern Plaza. After a yearlong hiatus, the School resumed its signature Jepson Leadership Forum, which this year focuses on the timely theme “Moving People: The Perils and Promise of Nationalism.”  This past weekend, the University welcomed alumni, friends, and family to campus for Homecoming weekend. 

Perhaps no event captured our shared exuberance so well as the Class of 2020 Commencement weekend celebration Sept. 18-19. After delaying their graduation festivities for a year and a half, Class of 2020 members joyfully reunited with friends and professors. The Jepson School shone bright at Commencement: Dan Mahoney, ’20, recipient of the Mace Award as the University’s most outstanding student, led the processional and recessional; Lina Tori Jan, ’20, received a standing ovation for her inspiring address as the class speaker; and associate professor of leadership studies Julian Hayter shared remarks as the faculty speaker.  

To learn more about Jepson School goings-on, I invite you to read this issue of the Jepson Update, which includes stories about the life and legacy of beloved leadership studies professor Gary L. McDowell, the much-anticipated launch of the School’s branding campaign, and some of our many accomplished alumni.

Thank you for your ongoing engagement with, and support of, the Jepson School. You are an integral part of our success.

Best wishes,

Sandra J. Peart
Dean and E. Claiborne Robins Distinguished Professor in Leadership Studies
President, Jepson Scholars Foundation