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Message from President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Jacobs


A message from the President and Vice-Chancellor showing support to those alumni affected by the current COVID19 outbreaks overseas.

Dear alumni

I have recorded this message of support for all in our community who are far from home or are in places of deep trouble due to the pandemic. On behalf of the UNSW community, I offer my deepest sympathy to our students, staff, alumni and friends who are feeling dreadful sadness at this dark time. Please know we are holding you close in our thoughts.

The recent cases of COVID-19 in Sydney are a reminder that the virus remains present, and that we must continue to practise COVID-safe behaviours to minimise risk and keep the community safe. But while the pandemic has touched all of our lives in some way, in Australia we have been relatively shielded from the magnitude of the crises unfolding in other countries. On Thursday I spoke over Zoom to our colleagues in the UNSW New Delhi office. Their distress was palpable as they described the daily loss of life, the continuous movements of ambulances in the streets, the hopelessness of people waiting outside overwhelmed hospitals, the lack of available oxygen – and a public health system that is breaking down. I came away from that call with a very heavy heart, a feeling I know many of you share as we see COVID-19 mercilessly decimating lives and livelihoods. For too many around the world, the trauma is great and the hopefulness scarce.

We are a better University for our rich cultural diversity. I ask that every member of the UNSW community shows great respect and compassion for all our students and colleagues during this current crisis, and always.

President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Jacobs