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Message to the Campus


The Year of the Water Rabbit: Reflection, Compassion, Solidarity and Prosperity

From: President Claudia Schrader
Sunday, January 22, 2023

Dear College Community,

While last year-- The Year of the Tiger-- was a time that was regarded as a time of action (and oh boy we were we active!) this year-- The Year of the Water Rabbit-- is regarded as a period of reflection, introspection and tranquility, where peace and prosperity take center stage.  

The rabbit is regarded as the luckiest animal in the Chinese Zodiac, but it’s not just luck, rabbits are smart.  Lore has it that the rabbit was one of 12 animals that in a race to the Jade Emperor to determine the order of the Chinese Zodiac.  However, the rabbit could not swim, and had to think strategically about how they would cross the river.  And they did so by crossing in a raft.  

It is also said that at one point in the race, the rabbit found itself stuck in the water. The dragon, who was flying overhead, sacrificed their own status in the race, took up a position behind the rabbit and blew a gust of wind to help send the rabbit across the finish line. No wonder this period is regarded as a time to build bridges in personal and professional relationships.  The relationship between the dragon and the rabbit also speaks to the importance of both giving and receiving compassion.

In this Year of the Rabbit and beyond, may we be more deliberate and reflective in our actions.  May we be compassionate with ourselves and others;  and may we be in solidarity with our Asian-American and Pacific Islander sisters and brothers in standing up against the rising tide hate and discrimination. Let us all continue to build bridges of understanding and collaboration so that we may be prosperous in our mission to ensure the success of our students. 

Happy Lunar New Year!

- President Schrader