A message from the dean

October 6, 2020

Dear business students, faculty and staff members,

Last week, we in the Walker College of Business experienced significant highs and painful lows. Educational experiences, and — let's face it — all aspects of life during this pandemic, sometimes seem surreal, at best.

Foremost, the feelings I'm experiencing, and the emotions I know you may be experiencing as you reflect upon the loss of one of our App State own — Chad Dorrill, can be overwhelming. As Chancellor Everts mentioned in her message on Friday, please reach out for counseling and support whenever needed. Students may contact the Counseling and Psychological Services Center at 828-262-3180 and faculty and staff members may contact Counseling for Faculty and Staff at 828-262-4951.

The Dean of Students office has coordinated a virtual memorial book to collect your thoughts and share them with the Dorrill family. While nothing can bring back a beloved young man, we can take action to protect our community and, in doing so, honor his memory and his family's wishes. As our state moves to phase 3 this week, we must strictly follow the 3Ws by wearing a face covering, maintaining 6 feet of distance from one another and washing our hands and work stations. We must also hold accountable our friends and colleagues to do the same, with no exceptions.

While the loss of life in our community (and region, state, nation and world) is too great for me to fully comprehend, and the frustration of isolation from loved ones, friends and colleagues weighs heavily upon me, too, I hope that when this pandemic finally ends we will emerge with skills and abilities that were previously unknown, or at least untested. Our virtual career week featuring Business Connections and our virtual Boyles Lecture (the first in 62 lectures to be held via a screen) were a success by all known accounts, with more than 1,000 of you taking time to tune in to meet the CEO of Nuveen as well as representatives from 92 hiring organizations. To know that our business students seize opportunities to connect and grow in their ability to make a positive impact gives me hope, and to think that in our future we'll not be bound by the same physical constraints is uplifting, at the least.

In closing, I know times are hard, but I know we are strong together. Please take care of yourself and help take care of each other. As we pass the halfway point in our semester, I remind you that I am here to support you in any way that I can.


Sandra A. Vannoy, Ph.D. | Acting Dean
Walker College of Business | Appalachian State University
4135 Kenneth E. Peacock Hall | 416 Howard Street
Boone, NC 28608 | USA
828-262-2058 | business.appstate.edu