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President's Insider Blog

April 2020 


Throughout his 80 years of service to Drake University, Paul Morrison was known to say, “we’re all in this together.” Drawing on his inspiration, “all in this together” became one of our institution’s four core values. The past weeks have demonstrated how ingrained this value is in the Drake culture. I think Paul would have been proud to see how his community has responded to the complex situation presented by the coronavirus. I know I am.

Following the guidance of local, state, and national authorities, we’ve had to make several difficult decisions regarding the spring semester:

  • We have shifted to remote delivery of instruction for the remainder of the term.
  • The 2020 Drake Relays, and all accompanying activities, have been postponed.
  • May commencement has been canceled. Since earning a college degree is a seminal moment that deserves recognition, graduates will have the opportunity to participate in an interactive, virtual commencement experience in May and are invited to attend our December 2020 commencement in person.

Additional information about our response to COVID-19 and our commitment to the health and safety of our community can be found on our website.

Spring is a special time on the Drake campus, so while the actions we have taken are necessary, the reality of this is still hard to take. Yet, in the face of adversity, our community has shown great resolve. Our faculty and staff have found creative ways to virtually deliver on our mission promise, and our students have remained committed to their Drake experience. Many have celebrated their ties to Drake and stayed connected during this time using the hashtag #DrakeTogether.

Our alumni have also been incredible sources of support. In late March, we launched the Student Emergency Fund to provide financial assistance to students who are facing unforeseen and urgent financial needs as the result of the pandemic. Within hours of unveiling the fund, we raised more than $21,000 from alumni, faculty and staff, and friends of the University. It was incredible to witness our community rally around our students who are most in need. There is still an opportunity to give to this crowdfunding effort.

The current climate also presents challenges for our future Bulldogs. The spring semester is a crucial time for high school seniors who are making their college decisions. Our Admissions team has responded quickly to the needs of these students and their families, including offering two robust and engaging Virtual Admitted Student Days. I encourage you to reach out to any students you know who are considering Drake. Your role as an ambassador for the University can help us effectively tell our story and recruit a strong incoming class.

I’m grateful to be part of the Drake family as we draw strength from one another in this unprecedented moment. Thank you for your past and continuing support for our University. Your loyalty and investment in The Drake Fund provide us with the ability to adapt to changing and challenging circumstances. Through your belief, dedication, and steadfast generosity, we will emerge from this stronger than ever.


Marty Martin
President, Drake University