Dear GSAS Students,
By now, I hope that you’ve had a chance to read the message from the Office of the Provost sent earlier this week. The restrictions on travel and suspension of visa processing are sobering reminders of the impact that the Coronavirus Disease pandemic is having on the entire Harvard community.
The restrictions on summer travel will not affect our ability to award travel fellowships to support your scholarship during these challenging times, and we will use travel funding as flexibly as we can. We must, however, recognize that while some travel may become possible, the global situation may remain unsettled for some time. Students who win fellowships and who had planned to use the funding for research travel this summer should consult with their advisors to determine how to pursue the project most productively under these changed circumstances. Similarly, students awarded funding for travel in academic year 2020–2021 will need to work closely with advisors to adjust travel plans and consider modifications to their projects. More guidance will be shared when students are notified about travel fellowship awards in mid- to late April, but we want students and their advisors to begin thinking now about how to make the best use of the time ahead.
The Provost’s message also contained information about visa processing suspensions. If you are an international student, I encourage you to remain connected to the Harvard International Office and to visit the HIO COVID-19 webpage for the latest immigration updates and advice.
Research is the lifeblood of graduate study, and I know that all of you are wondering when you will be able to get back to the field and to labs, archives, and libraries. In all honesty, I do not yet know the answer to that question, but I can assure you that the University understands the impact on your scholarship and is working hard to develop solutions. I will reach out again as soon as decisions have been made.
With all best wishes,
Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
McLean Professor of Ancient and Modern History and of the Classics