Students get out, about and active as classes start for Norwich University’s 2020-21 academic year

The first week of classes is nearly in the books, and the books have clearly been out. We’ve spotted students studying all over campus — in the Kreitzberg Library, in dorms and sometimes outside. We’ve also seen students staying active and fit, keeping a long Norwich tradition.

Gyms, like other on-campus spaces, have had to run at reduced capacities because of Vermont Health Department guidelines related to the coronavirus pandemic. But our students, like the one pictured here lifting weights at Plumley Armory, have found ways to work out while wearing their masks, physically distancing and sanitizing all equipment they’ve used.

Beyond individual workouts, the Corps of Cadets and the rook class have been deep into physical training. We’ve seen them marching in masks in smaller, physically distanced groups around the Upper Parade Ground and across campus. Commandant Col. Michael Titus and College of National Services Dean Col. Matthew Smith have said training will be adapted to accommodate Vermont Health Department guidelines.

This past week started Sunday with the Dog River Run and the Oath Ceremony and included Convocation on Tuesday.

Speaking of space, some classes went outside this week, including a nursing simulation lab that covered injections and catheter and chest tube insertion. Jamie Maxham-Robillard, who organized the outdoor lab with Sarah Manacek and Kevin Scott, said the setting offered a pleasant, airy space to revisit techniques.

“(Students said,) “I remember how to do this,’” Maxham-Robillard said.

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Norwich University students have found ways to keep 6-foot physical distance and wear their face masks while using Plumley Armory’s exercise rooms. (Photo by Mark Collier.)

This past week started Sunday with the Dog River Run and the Oath Ceremony, two long-standing Norwich rites, and included Convocation on Tuesday, which featured inspirational words from keynote speaker Mark C. Anarumo, who is beginning his first year as Norwich’s 24th president, and Provost Sandra Affenito.

View Thursday's full photo gallery here.

Coming up

The coming week, which features the Labor Day holiday on Monday, will feature a virtually delivered address at 7 p.m. Wednesday by former Virginia lieutenant governor candidate Susan Platt. The talk is part of the Public Administration Speakers Series, presented by the College of Graduate and Continuing Studies.

Platt, who hosts the “Platt-itudes” show on Goochland, Virginia-based AM-FM news and talk radio station WJFN, will draw from 30-plus years insight on national, federal and state politics and legislation in her presentation. Platt worked for 15 years in U.S. House of Representatives and Senate offices and was chief of staff for Joseph R. Biden during the 1994 to 1996 election cycle, when he was a Delaware senator. Biden is now the Democratic presidential nominee.

The coming week will also feature a Pub/Trivia Quiz at 8 p.m. Thursday, directed by the Campus Activities Board, and will peak with 2020 Commencement at 2 p.m. Sept. 12. Richard W. Schneider, who completed 28 successful years as Norwich’s president, will deliver the keynote address at the event, which was postponed from May because of the pandemic.

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A member of Norwich University’s Corps of Cadets was studying hard this past week as classes got underway. (Photo by Mark Collier.)

Schneider, who retired from the university in May, is now president emeritus. The Queens, New York, native, graduated from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in 1968. He was commissioned as an ensign in the Coast Guard and served eight years on active duty, including a tour of Vietnam. He retired from the Coast Guard Reserve as a rear admiral in July 1998. He earned a master’s degree in liberal studies from Wesleyan University and a doctorate in public policy from the University of Delaware.

Schneider’s accomplishments as the university’s 23rd president are numerous. He oversaw multimillion-dollar fundraising campaigns that allowed makeovers of existing campus buildings and the addition of new ones. He boosted the university’s endowment fivefold.

Schneider also oversaw increases in enrollment (up more than 62%), expanded academic majors and course offerings and championed undergraduate research programs and study away and abroad programs. He led an expansion of the Corps of Cadets (up more than 60%) and the establishment of the online College of Graduate and Continuing Studies. His Norwich After Next plan has the university poised to prosper for years to come.

To coincide with Commencement, the building known as Webb/North Hall will be renamed Schneider Hall. A renaming ceremony will run at 11:45 a.m. Saturday at the building’s south side.

Click here to register by Wednesday. To allow for proper physical distancing, as outlined in Vermont Health Department guidelines related to COVID-19, attendance will be limited to 150 people. Registration acceptance will be first come, first served.

(Slideshow photos by Mark Collier.)

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