Happy Thanksgiving, Seawolves

by Cathy Sandeen, UAA Chancellor  |   

Dear UAA Community,

As we head into the long weekend, I want to wish you all a safe, happy and healthy holiday. For many of us, Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on the blessings in our lives and spend time with those we hold dear. It has been an unprecedented year for all of us, and this will serve as a much needed opportunity to relax and recharge.

For those of you who celebrate Thanksgiving, I hope you do so safely and responsibly. COVID-19 cases continue to surge within our communities, and we must each do our part to stop the spread and protect the most vulnerable among us as well as our local hospitals and health care workers. If you plan to celebrate with loved ones, I encourage you to read through the CDC guidance on holiday celebrations and small gatherings.

This year has also illuminated the persistence of systemic racism and injustice in this country, and the Thanksgiving holiday is a good time to reflect on how our actions can contribute to systems of oppression. Throughout history, indigenous populations have often been silenced and invalidated, especially regarding the first Thanksgiving and pilgrimage to America.

UAA proudly serves the state of Alaska on the ancestral homelands of the Dena’ina Athabascan, Ahtna Athabascan, Alutiiq/Sugpiak and Eyak peoples, and we remain committed to uplifting Native voices and stories. If you feel so inclined, I invite you to read, research and learn more about the history of this holiday and its significance across cultural groups.

Thank you for all you do every day to support our collective goals and ensure a quality education for the students we serve. I am so grateful for this dedicated community of amazing students, faculty, staff and alumni. Enjoy a well-deserved long weekend and stay safe and healthy in your celebrations.

Cathy Sandeen
UAA Chancellor

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