Letter from Our Director - June 2021

By Rebecca L. Spang

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Dear Friends and Alumni/ae of LAMP,

We made it!! No matter how you think about it, academic year 2020-21 will surely be one for the history books. Even in January 2020, nobody would have believed me if I had said we were going to spend most of the next three semesters teaching via an online platform or with a dozen masked students spread across a classroom that normally seats 250. Nobody would have imagined that IU students would take Bloomington classes while living in Gary or Inner Mongolia. And who would have anticipated the Little Five race without spectators (or parties)? It’s been a crazy ride.

Here at LAMP, we are so grateful to have gotten through the last year and a half healthy and fully employed but we know better than to generalize from our own situation. We’re relieved that the most dire economic predictions from early in the pandemic have not come true, but we are also well aware that the K-shaped recovery (rising for those already on the top, falling for the larger group on the bottom) has increased inequality. Combined with the long history of racism and other forms of prejudice in this country, the growth of an American dual economy is almost certainly bad news for all Americans. So even as we celebrate our successes, we recognize the unequal barriers and hurdles our students and colleagues have confronted. What’s that saying about perspectives? It’s never been more true.

We are more persuaded than ever that a wide-ranging Liberal Arts education is the best training we can give young people today. We’re excited that both the honors certificate (“traditional” LAMP) and the still new major (Management + Human Organizations) are thriving and we are looking forward to a busy calendar of events in Fall 2021. I hope you might be interested in participating in some of them!

In the meantime you may enjoy my 2021 “graduation speech” (more content on our YouTube channel coming soon) or the LAMP Yearbook. We’ve been as generous in supporting our students through the pandemic as regulations allow; if you would like to help replenish our unrestricted Scholarship Fund or the LAMP General Account (search the IU Foundation page for “LAMP Student Scholarship”), no amount is too little. And of course we’re so grateful for all the support alumni give through their time and expertise. Please be in touch!


Rebecca L. Spang, Director of LAMP