Dean's letter: Welcome back to Semester 2

In his first letter of the new semester, Professor Paul Kofman welcomes all our students, new and old, and offers up some study tips for the weeks ahead.

Dear Students,

Welcome to Semester 2, 2020 and in particular, welcome to all of our new students. I was very pleased to see so many of you participate in our online Orientation activities and information sessions over last week. This is a difficult time for us all and I continue to be impressed by your commitment to learning as well as our academics commitment to teaching. Be kind to yourselves and be assured that you are achieving despite these strange circumstances.

For our new students, while we are not currently on our physical campus in Parkville, I’d recommend making an effort to connect with your peers and support networks virtually. Seek help if you need it to enhance your academic skills or enrol in a wellbeing short course. Many of our Clubs and Societies have also made the transition to a virtual environment and I’d encourage you to join and get involved in the ones you are interested in.

COVID-19 has presented the world with a major public health emergency, but it is also an economic disaster and this is a crucial time for the governments all over the world to choose the right policies to help us recover as quickly as possible. Our Academics have been sharing their research and offering guidance on what may be the best course of action here. Please do read Prof Simon Loertscher’s recent article on striking a balance between managing the pandemic and the economy or while you’re out for some physical distance exercise listen to Dr Robin Canniford’s podcast about conspiracy theories, which have indeed proliferated in recent times and obstructed response efforts. There are many other excellent examples of our academics’ thought leadership on our Inside Business page in Pursuit, the University’s research insights and commentary site.

Above all, I hope you will use the skills you learn in your studies this semester to question, to interrogate and together with our academics consider evidence-based answers to our economic and social challenges.

I look forward to checking in with you at regular intervals over this Semester and in the meantime, I hope you and your families stay safe and well,


Paul Kofman