Williams Fall 2020: Getting your questions answered

To the Williams community,

How many questions do you have about Fall 2020? Judging from experience, the answer is somewhere between zero and infinity (please don’t ask about the margin of error).

If you do have questions, here are places that we want you to know you can turn to for help.

For literally everyone:

For staff and faculty:

  • With questions about the logistics of reopening, including but not limited to testing and public health, return-to-campus plans, childcare, facilities access and cleaning protocols, or HR and benefits, email Vice President for Finance and Administration and Treasurer Fred Puddester at [email protected]. Fred and the other members of our COVID-19 Operations and Business Continuity Committee can help you think about almost any such challenge.

  • For questions about teaching and the fall curriculum, the faculty’s best resource is Dean of Faculty (it’s right there in her title!) Safa Zaki at [email protected].

  • Marlene Sandstrom and the crew in the Dean’s office have information about student support and accommodations, including resources for international, first-gen, transfer students and student-veterans, among others.

  • And the Registrar’s team is the place to turn with questions about course schedules, room assignments, registration, degree requirements, and the many other if-then complexities of the Williams curriculum.

For students and families:

  • If you have questions about testing and public health, campus arrival times, quarantines, etc., we encourage you to contact VP for Finance and Administration and Treasurer Fred Puddester at [email protected].
  • If your question is about academics or residential life, including in-person vs. remote study, course schedules and credits, housing, international student matters, orientation, etc., please get in touch with the Dean of the College’s team.
  • If you want to know about housing or campus life, including student activities and organizations, check with the Office of Campus Life.
  • If you need help with financial aid, or if your financial circumstances have changed, the Financial Aid team is almost always available (they seem to occasionally need sleep, but not much, as far as I can tell).
  • And for general questions, family members are welcome to contact our peppy paragon of parent programming, Director of Parent and Family Programs Rob White, at [email protected].

Chances are you already know many of these folks. But I can’t say it enough—they’re wonderful, talented people, eager to help.

They and hundreds of other Williams staff, faculty and administrators are working hard to resolve the innumerable complexities of fall planning. All deserve recognition and deep gratitude. But I hope it helps to know a few places you can turn for the particular information people seem to want most.

These folks know a lot. And even if they don’t yet have the answer to your question, someone might be able to estimate when we’ll have one or reassure you that the topic is on our list.

In other words, Fall 2020 is a team effort. Thank you, as always, for your partnership in that process.

Jim Reische
Chief Communications Officer