Hello to our students, colleagues, and friends
It has been an unprecedented year at the Eskenazi School, as everywhere. Not long after finishing our inaugural strategic plan last winter, the COVID-19 pandemic upended our world. We had to learn entirely new ways of working and connecting with one another. As campus went silent at one of the most beautiful seasons of the year, our faculty and instructors made major adjustments to their teaching, and our students found new ways to study with us from across the country and around the world.
The cost was high: many faculty, staff, and students had personal commitments that made it very difficult to balance their daily schedules. Most internships and overseas studies programs were suspended. And beloved end-ofsemester events like graduation ceremonies and thesis shows had to move online.
These disruptions underlined two principles that have always guided us at the Eskenazi School: Art and design matter. Community matters. We knewthat. But this pandemic reminded us—reminded the entire world—that art and design create community. And they bring solace, too. All of us pulled out pencils, paint, fabric, and cameras during our self-quarantine. We used our skills to assist first responders and to enhance community. And all of us were reminded how powerful online media are to communicate ideas and to generate passion and positive energy.
In the midst of moving our IU world online, we had to keep important initiatives moving ahead. To complement our strategic plan, a task force was “never daunted” and continued to work over Zoom to create our first diversity, equity, and inclusion plan. And in May and June, after horrifying cases of police brutality were captured on camera, we were reminded that our school’s—and our nation’s—attention to these issues must be constant and unrelenting.
And so, in the end, this admittedly difficult spring wound up being an affirmation. In these pages, you will see how the Eskenazi community rose to the challenges and then exceeded them, to bring beauty and peace to the world. I’ve never been more proud to lead this wonderful, enterprising, loving, and talented family.
Founding Dean and Professor