Message to the Lehigh community from Bethlehem Mayor Bob Donchez, Kerry Shamnoski ’22 and Lucy Kwiatek ’22
Here are their full remarks transcribed.
Donchez: Hello, I am Mayor Bob Donchez. I would like to take this opportunity to welcome you back to Bethlehem. And for those of you who are coming to Lehigh for the first time, welcome to our great city. You are an important part of our community and add to its dynamism. You have the incredible opportunity to study at one of the best universities in the country. I want to wish you the best for a successful semester. While you are here, do all you can to keep yourself and our community safe and healthy. I know socializing with friends is part of the college experience, but this virus is insidious and it can spread quickly where there are large gatherings. So for now, please limit large gatherings, and that means avoiding parties. I count on you. The city of Bethlehem is counting on you to do the right thing: wear a mask, maintain social distancing and avoid large crowds, wash your hands frequently, and stay home if you are feeling unwell. And remember, we’re all in the same boat.
Shamnoski: Hi my name is Kerry Shamnoski and I am delighted to start the semester. It is extremely important for us to do our part to keep the community of Lehigh and the community of Southside Bethlehem safe by doing our part, monitoring ourselves and, if you feel sick, staying home.
Kwiatek: I am Lucy. I am a junior here in Lehigh and have lived in Bethlehem most of my life. Now, at this time, it is important that we show our respect, not only for our fellow students and faculty, but also for the workers who keep this campus running and for the larger community that supports us all. Now we can do that by following some pretty basic security guidelines. First, wear one of these [a mask] whenever you are with other people. In addition, it is very important that you follow the rules of social distancing, including that you do not attend events, especially indoors where it will be crowded. It’s a great way to get COVID and it’s a great way to make it easier for the community to spread, which we don’t want. Right now, it’s really important that you follow some of these guidelines during this semester. While it’s not easy and it’s not super fun, it’s necessary, it’s important, and it will keep everyone safe.