In one of the most trying public health challenges in history, Colby College never lost its focus on carrying out its mission of providing an outstanding education. In 2020-21, Colby students benefited from that enduring commitment in so many different ways. Yet the challenge we took on together has not ended. As we face an ongoing local, statewide, national, and worldwide public health crisis that changes in scope and scale from day to day, we seek to continue our campus-based educational program knowing that it will only be possible if every one of us understands the risks and commits unequivocally to ensuring that our personal behavior comports with the College’s policies and guidelines to protect the health and safety of everyone in our community—including the Waterville community.
This abiding compact calls on us to recognize our shared purpose and belief that when it comes to securing the health and well-being of ourselves and others, individual choice and individualistic action will need to be subordinate to the common good. Even with a vaccination, we can still contract the virus, and some of us can become quite ill. As vaccinated students, we can also spread the virus to those in our community who are unable to be vaccinated. As long as the pandemic continues to create unreasonable risk for those around us, we pledge to honor the shared sacrifice needed to prevent great harm. It remains a time to act deliberately and thoughtfully to protect others and thereby to protect the extraordinary privilege we have to live and learn together on Mayflower Hill.
Our experiences over the last year have strengthened our conviction that we are better when we are together. We learn in relationship with one another. The purposely designed campus creates a more equitable learning environment than remote instruction. And our activities outside of the classroom bring additional joy and meaning to our lives. The Mule Pledge we sign today is a commitment we make to follow the steps necessary to allow our community to stay together.
The Colby Affirmation states that our community requires “active, honest, and compassionate engagement with one another.” As we face the continued health risks and challenges that Covid-19 and its many variants pose for us, our community, and the world, it is imperative that we treat each other with respect and lead with patience, empathy, and compassion in our daily interactions.
By choosing to join or return to campus and signing this Mule Pledge, I agree that I will do my part to safeguard our Colby community and local Waterville community. I also acknowledge that doing my part means adhering to measures that may change from time to time, based on the prevailing public health environment.
I have read and understand Colby’s Covid-19 policy and agree to comply with it. My signature below acknowledges my acceptance of shared community expectations and my responsibility to safeguard the well-being of my fellow classmates, our faculty and staff, and members of the local community. We can ensure another great Colby experience this year, only if each and every one of us lives up to this pledge.