Welcome message from Dean Gretchen Ritter

Dean Ritter wearing a face mask

Dear friends,

I am so pleased to welcome you to the digital fall 2020 issue of ASCENT from the College of Arts and Sciences at The Ohio State University.

This year we all are grappling with major societal challenges that have tested our resolve — including the COVID-19 pandemic and calls for racial justice and social equity. In the College of Arts and Sciences, our faculty, students and alumni don’t shy away from difficult problems. This year has been no exception.

In this issue of ASCENT, you’ll read more about Arts and Sciences Buckeyes who are:

  • modeling the spread of COVID-19 and assisting state and local health departments;
  • taking a hard look at the reality of racial inequities and envisioning a more equitable and just society;
  • studying the effects of our changing climate, including right here in Ohio; and
  • considering how all this is happening in the context of a historic presidential election year

While we face significant challenges today, being dean of Arts and Sciences gives me a window into the future, and nothing provides me with more optimism and energy than seeing Buckeyes at work. I know many of you have been working toward a brighter future as well — including as healthcare providers, researchers, artists and educators. Many of you are also dedicated parents and caregivers, and community members devoted to taking care of neighbors in need.

Together as Buckeyes, we are and always will be champions for people and their potential. I am grateful you are on this journey with us.

Best wishes,

Gretchen Ritter, PhD
Executive Dean and Vice Provost
Professor of Political Science