The past 11 months have been challenging for many, and COVID-19 has created its share of disruptions, but Terriers across campus still recognize there’s much for which to be grateful.
A few Terriers share thoughts on gratitude:
“We are grateful that our Wofford family is healthy and that we made it through the semester together! We are thankful for hope in a vaccine for COVID-19 and look forward to welcoming everyone back in the new year. I miss our students and the energy they bring to campus when they are away, so I am always grateful for their return!” Prema Samhat
“I’m most thankful for my faith. I say this because faith is the one thing that will always support me even when the world is down on its luck or injustices arise in every corner of society. With faith, I can think clearly about what my behavior will manifest into.” Yasmin Lee ’23, a studio art major from Columbia, S.C.
“I have been incredibly surprised and grateful for the time that we have been able to spend at Wofford this semester. Every single day that we are able to be on campus and in the classroom, both virtual and in-person, has been extra time that I was not expecting and am very thankful for. This time has allowed me to see my friends and reconnect with people that I have not seen in months, and I am very thankful for the Wofford community that is continuing to thrive and adapt in these unprecedented times.” Avery Volker ’22, an English, history and Spanish major from Charlotte, N.C.
“I’ve been super thankful for my family. We lost a relative recently, and it’s made me realize how important it is to always end a conversation with ‘I love you.’ You never know when you’ll see them again, or if you even will. I’m also thankful for my hometown. All of my friends to see there, and the familiarity is comforting. Lastly, I’m thankful for my niece. Watching her grow up reminds me how important the next generation is for humanity.” Avery Alea ’23, a biology major from Charleston, S.C.
“I am thankful for the opportunities that Wofford has offered me. I am also grateful for the friends I have made in my short time here and for the amazing support system that Wofford has presented to me.” Jessy Delgado ’24, an undeclared major from Spartanburg, S.C.
“I am thankful for my dogs, thankful that I am cared for and have the support by my friends and family to be independent and successful, thankful for my good health and my job.” Julia Terrell ’22, a Spanish major from Brevard, N.C.
“I am so thankful for the fall weather and for the way the leaves change. It is an extraordinary experience to get to take in as someone who didn’t grow up with the fall vibes (because I am from Florida). I am grateful for my friends and getting to be in the same place. For good food and good memories, and for the moments of fullness in between meals.” Sarah Kate Levin ’22, a finance major from Jacksonville, Fla.
“I'm thankful that my closest friends and family have been able to remain safe and healthy throughout this pandemic and how close we've been able to grow together through these troubling times. I'm also thankful that I won't be cooking for Thanksgiving!” Jalen Carter ‘21, a sociology and anthropology and psychology major from Clinton, S.C.
“I’m thankful for my staff and players, who have been diligent and resilient throughout this fall semester on and off the court. They have inspired me in so many ways, and I know the Terrier community feels the same way. I am also thankful for the collaborative effort of the administration, faculty and health officials that have all worked overtime to make this semester the best experience possible for all students. Everyone has pitched in to help be the best problem solvers possible so that students can continue to get a world-class education, as well as our players having the opportunity to compete on the basketball court.” Jay McAuley, head men’s basketball coach
“I am thankful for the Wofford community making this semester feel as normal as possible.” Britt Wilbur ’21, an English major from San Antonio, Texas
“As we near Thanksgiving, I feel grateful for the opportunity to be a leader. At Wofford, I’m blessed to influence the student experience in what I hope are meaningful ways. When I get home each day, I get to play my most favorite roles, and that’s being a husband and dad. Both personally and professionally, it’s a privilege to be able to lead from a place of love and belonging, knowing that my contribution matters.” Matt Hammett, assistant dean of students for student involvement
“I am thankful for my deep faith, my loving family, my supportive friends and my resilience! I am thankful to have enriching and educational work to do and caring colleagues with whom to do it. I am thankful for the students, staff, faculty, trustees, alumni, parents and friends of Wofford who work together so our college community can educate and help develop young people who make the world a better place.” Roberta Hurley Bigger ’81, vice president and dean of students
“I am appreciative of the support of the Wofford community throughout this unique semester. I am especially grateful for the work of Lisa Lefebvre and the Wellness Center staff who have diligently worked to keep us all safe. Their work comforting, counseling and advising students is what has allowed us to have a full semester on campus, and for that I am extremely grateful.” Megan Leonard ’21, a biology and Spanish major from Charlotte, N.C.
“I am thankful for my family (both immediate and ones I can’t see regularly), health and home. In a time of uncertainty, I appreciate the little things like going for a walk with my dog, watching the leaves fall and reading a good book. I hope that others find their peace and contentment in the little things in life that make them happy.” Lisa M Lefebvre, RN, BSN, director of employee wellness and medical services
“One thing I am thankful for this year has been the selfless nature displayed by the members of the Wofford community. It is tempting to treat this semester like any other, but everyone has developed the ‘we are all in this together’ mentality. I am thankful that we have been able to work together and stay on campus for as long as we have.” Drew Reynolds ’21, Campus Union president and a biology major from Sumter, S.C.
“I am thankful for all the normal things that people are this time of year. I am thankful for my wonderful family, including my wife, two grown children and my mom. I am very thankful that we are relatively healthy and have been COVID- free, especially since my wife and daughter are on the front lines in the medical field. I am so very thankful that they remain healthy. I am also thankful that we all have jobs and continue to work. I am especially thankful to be allowed to work at my wonderful alma mater whose leadership has ensured that Wofford remains open and viable when so many institutions are in bad shape because of the pandemic. Finally, I am thankful for this country and consider it to be the greatest country in the world despite what many others think and say. Beyond these reasons to be thankful, I am grateful to have been allowed to serve my country, state, community and this fine institution for nearly 40 years. Service has always been an honor and a privilege, and I am thankful for the opportunity.” Randy Hall, Campus Safety director and Rifle Team coach
“I am thankful for my students, especially their good nature, graciousness, and patience during what has been a challenging semester for everyone. Although we are all tired of Zoom, I am actually grateful the technology exists as it has enabled us to safely have meetings, hold remote classes, interview people for jobs, socialize with friends, etc. I also deeply appreciate all of my colleagues who have worked extremely hard to provide the best possible learning experience for students under the difficult circumstances of a global pandemic.” Dr. Rachel Vanderhill, associate professor and department chair of the Department of Government and International Affairs
“I’m thankful that after more than 23 years at Wofford, I am still excited to come to work each day and be privileged to interact with students who keep me young at heart. I’m thankful for the trust they show me in sharing their joys, their dreams and their sorrows. I’m thankful for the opportunity to teach, to listen and to provide support for those who are hurting. And most importantly, I’m thankful for the decades of students who haven’t let graduation mark a farewell to our friendships. Wofford is my home, and for that I consider myself incredibly blessed.” Dr. Boyce Lawton, dean for student success
“I’m grateful for my family and friends, Carolina Wrens and chickadees, and President-elect Joseph Biden Jr. and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris.” Dr. John Ware, associate professor and chair of the Department of English
“I’m thankful for the opportunity to interact in the lives of so many wonderful students and staff.” Dwayne Harris, assistant director of Campus Safety
“I am thankful for art in general. During the quarantine I found myself painting, making clothes and having photo shoots. I appreciate a different way of expressing my feelings other than words.” Hannah Sterling ’23, a finance and Spanish major from Snellville, Ga.
“I am so grateful for family and friends. Times like these make you realize what is really important in life.” Jeremy Powers ’21, a finance major from Spartanburg, S.C.
“I am thankful for the opportunity to strengthen bonds with previous students and the opportunity to build relationships with new students.” James Stukes, coordinator for college access and student success
“I’m grateful for the way that our Wofford community came together, and we’ve all done our best to make to continue our mission in a trying time.” Dr. Kate Marsden, assistant professor of history
“I am always thankful for everything in my life, big and small. I believe that it is very important to be grateful every day. I did not grow up celebrating Thanksgiving so I will not be doing anything different next week. Every day, I thank the universe for big things, being healthy, having a loving family and friends and spending time with them, being able to live in a warm and comfortable house, and so on. Every day I feel gratitude for things that we, in a developed world, take for granted such as having running drinkable water, having food in my fridge and freezer, being able to take a hot shower whenever I want, and so on. I am also grateful for beautiful moments in nature such as flowers, a nice sunrise or sunset, trees, and so on. Finally, I am thankful for all the people in the world who make the lives of others happier.” Dr. Begoña Caballero Garcia, dean of diversity and inclusion and associate professor of Spanish