Through the Wheaton Lens – staff messages to Wheaton parents and families during COVID-19

Parents and families, your students continue to inspire us every day, even as we work remotely from our home offices, living rooms, kitchens, and corners of our houses where we never imagined we could be so productive. Where we normally would highlight a student’s view of Wheaton in our Through the Student Lens feature, with students absent from campus, we instead flip our perspective and share messages of support for you. Thank you for being a part of the Wheaton family!


I know this has been a tumultuous time for you and for your students. I’m so proud of how students are embracing all of this change; it has been far from easy or smooth, and I recognize that students (and you, for that matter) need space and time to not be okay. We are all dealing with so much both professionally and personally. I realize that not everyone has the means to absorb the impact of all the changes we are facing in our communities without a few bruises and bumps. I was reading an essay about the ways students are experiencing loss: loss of traditions and ritual, loss of the informality of the day-to-day, missing campus, missing activities of all sorts. It’s hard figuring out how to make sense of everything when so much is no longer familiar and predictable. Having said that, the ways in which you are supporting not only your own students but also their classmates, has been truly inspiring. Despite all of what we are experiencing, we will be okay. We will make our way through and we are all here to do what we can for your students too. I wish for you what I’ve wished for my colleagues: the patience, grace, and good humor to navigate these uncharted waters.
Renee T. White, Office of the Provost

We hope this message finds you well!  We talk all the time how students are part of our family, now more than ever we can feel the emotions of our family bond. We miss our students, they are an important and positive part of our lives. Please let them know how much they mean to us and that they are in our thoughts and prayers.
The Wheaton Dining Team

Wheaton students are some of the most caring, aware, and amazing students that I have had the opportunity to support over my career of 12+ years in higher education.  As I have met with students to continue supporting their post-graduation planning and articulate their career goals, I continue to be impressed with their resiliency in their own job search, and commitment to making a difference in the world.  Every virtual conversation I have with Wheaton students these past few weeks have been a pleasure and I look forward to continuing to build relationships, engage in more conversations, and empower Wheaton students to continue crafting their career journeys.
Maggie Becker, Career Services

Thank you for all that you do — juggling it all at once is no easy feat, but we are so lucky to have an amazing community come together during these highly unusual times.
Corrie Lefebvre, Wheaton Fund

Sending wishes for good health to all of our Wheaties!!!
Wendy Rosenthal, Advancement

We are missing your students on our campus. They are, for many of us, the most important people in our lives. While our physical campus is closed, know that we are doing everything we can to make Home feel like Wheaton and Wheaton feel like Home. Encourage your students to stay engaged through virtual programming initiatives happening every day. We know these are hard times. We look forward to having your students back on campus, sharing in traditions, laughing with friends, and making memories. For your students who are graduating, they will always be members of our Wheaton family. We are #LyonStrong. 
Danni Alarie, Residential Life & Student Activities, Involvement, and Leadership

Sending you all love and light during this trying time!
Rebecca, Conferences & Event Services

During this unprecedented time in our professional and in our personal lives, keeping connected is what makes us a stronger community. With professors as mentors, staff as advocates, and classmates as fellow explorers, Wheaton students undertake a journey of intellectual discovery, bringing their purpose, sense of wonder and curiosity to the Wheaton College community. As parents/guardians you set the course that allowed your student to discover their individual paths and build upon the legacy of the Wheaton community. My thoughts and good wishes are with you and your family.
Wanda Suriel, Admission

Sending all our Wheaton Athletics families my well wishes for health & safety during this unprecedented time. We miss all the Lyons & their families! #LetsGoWheat
Kaylyn Smith, Athletics

Hi Everyone, I just wanted to let you know, the librarians miss your students so much and we hope you know how invested we are with their success! I am so lucky to be working with such amazing student scholars every day! You should be so proud of your students and know that we are here to help them, even remotely, to see them thrive!
Jillian Amaral, Research and Instruction Team at Wallace Library

I hope everyone is safe and healthy. We miss our wonderful students. I am thinking of you all and keeping you in my heart. 
Ana Brenescoto ’15, Wheaton Fund

Working remotely has shown me what a privilege it was to be able to walk across campus and see students going about their lives—studying in classrooms, working in offices, hanging out in the Dimple, waiting in line debating whether to get the salad or the mac-and-cheese bowl during lunch in Emerson. I am glad that they are in the safety of their homes or in the protective environment of campus, if they could not return home. But, I miss engaging with their sparkle. Our work here at Wheaton is all in the service of them—helping, supporting and celebrating them during their Wheaton journey and beyond. I can’t wait to see them back on campus laughing, learning and making their way toward their dreams.
Sandy Coleman, Marketing and Communications

Families, we miss seeing your student in the library. Whether they primarily came to the library to print, use our collections, do research, or study with friends in our many nooks and crannies—we miss them so much! We can’t wait to see them (and you) soon.
Megan Brooks, Library Services

Although I just joined the Wheaton family in September, I realize the students at Wheaton are the BEST!  The students are compassionate about everything on campus from academics, athletics, clubs, organizations and even telling me what is the best smoothie at Emerson Dining!  I have had the pleasure of working with a small group of students that plan events. They are the amazing SEAS students (Student Engagement Assistants in SAIL), PAC and SGA.  As parents you should be so proud of how they juggle academics, fun and community service. Over the years, one of the reasons I work at a college is to be around our future leaders and your children will be set to do incredible tasks in the future. It is truly remarkable to see what they accomplish in four years. We miss seeing them on campus! Sending thoughts to you and your families for continued health and happiness!
Therese Doyle Parillo, Conference & Event Services

I miss our students greatly. I miss having them walk into my office just to chat about their game from the night before. I wish all of your families health and encouragement through the weeks that are ahead of us. I cannot wait to see your students again. Tell them all I say, “hi.” All the best. 
Judy Allen, Athletics and Recreation

We miss your students so much! Encourage them not to “count the days” until they return to Wheaton but “make these days count” with their family!  We will have tons to talk about when they come back to campus!
Vicki Toppses, Watson Fine Arts-Provost Office

I always look forward to this time of year when I can witness the sense of our amazing Wheaton community outside my office on the beautiful Dimple. You are all missed, but we are Wheaton and we will all come back stronger than ever. Until then, please stay safe and healthy.
Jamie McAndrews, Donor Relations

We miss your students and value your partnership in supporting them over the remaining weeks of the semester.  We are so thankful for your commitment to their success and we, in Academic Advising, will continue to offer support and resources as we can from a distance. Be well.
Steven Viveiros, Academic Advising

Thinking of you and our students every day, and although I’m missing their smiling faces and infectious enthusiasm, I’m grateful for the opportunity to continue virtual interactions with many of our students daily. Sending my very best wishes for good health, strength and safety to all our students and their families, and looking forward to coming together on campus in the future.
Barbara Carnevale, Career Services

We miss your daughters and sons immensely!  Please know we are here for all of you, and we appreciate your patience and understanding as we all work together to make this “new and temporary normal” as comfortable as possible. SFS is dedicated to working with all students, parents, guardians and families to continue to make our Wheaton community thrive. We are looking forward to celebrating your seniors and welcoming your juniors, sophomores and first-year students back to campus!
Susan Beard, Student Financial Services

Thank you for all that you’re doing to support your loved ones during these trying times. We can’t wait for when we can all be together again on campus! Our Wheaton spirit can be felt virtually in the encouraging social media posts, funny TikToks and zoom events. Stay engaged by checking out our virtual programs and social media posts @wheaton.campuslife,
Nicole Lombardi, Student Activities, Involvement and Leadership (SAIL)

We know families are a vital source of support to students. Thank you for your partnership!  Parents and families of seniors, celebrate this significant milestone with your graduate. This is a great accomplishment. We hope we will have an opportunity to celebrate together soon!
Raquel Ramos, Marshall Center for Intercultural Learning

We hope you know how much we miss your students and the vibrancy they bring to campus. We may all be remote, but we are all still here and working hard for your student every day, thinking of your families. Working at Wheaton is more than just a job, it’s a community, and we greatly miss it. We wish you and your family health, safety and happiness during these trying times and we are looking forward to the day when we can all be back on campus with your students! Sending extra special thoughts to all the seniors and senior families!
Brienn Buchanan, Advancement

Looking forward to looking out my office window again, seeing your students all studying and socializing on the Dimple in the fall.
Ailish Welch, Finance

Parents and families are such an important and beloved part of our Wheaton community. We take this time to look back to happy, warm, sunny days during Parent Family Weekends, with music and food on Chapel Field and in obstacle course races through the Dimple and around campus. We miss these days where we had lots of laughs and were able come together as one. These memories will push us through this and we look forward to the time when we can do it all again. Until then, we send many, many positive thoughts to you and your families.
The Parent-Family Weekend Planning Committee


Through the Student Lens
Through the Student Lens brings the campus to you, as seen through the eyes of our students, the many roles they play, and experiences they gain during the time here at Wheaton. As parents and families, you are an integral part of our community. You and your students are in our thoughts and we look forward to once again profiling another one of your amazing students in the future.