The fall 2020 semester has been wrought with new challenges, big changes, and much loss.
The passing of friends, family and colleagues is never easy, and the difficulties of social distancing in a global pandemic have increased the emotional strain felt by many. Funerals and memorials have shifted online, been limited in attendance, or been postponed entirely to an undetermined time when it is “safe” to gather again.
Salt Lake Community College has also seen its share of loss this term, as faculty, staff, and loved ones in the community have passed.
In October, Doug Miller passed away due to complications from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident. Miller taught in the Computer and Networking program in the School of Applied Technology and Technical Specialties.
“He was a committed teacher, with a big heart. He matched student effort! If a student was struggling with a concept, Doug would keep working with that person for as long as it took,” said Dr. Jennifer Saunders, dean of the School of Applied Technology and Technical Specialties.
Miller contributed to the college community in other ways, Saunders explained. He served on the Collaborative Work Team for Prior Learning Assessment, assisting SLCC in efforts to improve college access for adult learners. Miller also had a desire to support veterans as they transition into a college program.
“Doug served in the U.S. Air Force and knew that this transition could be challenging,” Saunders said.
Also in October, SLCC unexpectedly lost Jeffrey Lindquist, an adjunct faculty member in the Professional Truck Driving program. SLCC President Deneece Huftalin expressed her condolences in an email, adding that Lindquist’s colleagues “described him as someone who ‘gave students his all.’”
“He worked hard to ensure students who finished the program were prepared to be safe drivers. Jeff meticulously cared for the College’s trucks and loved and took pride in his work,” Huftalin wrote.
As the semester came to a close, Huftalin reached out via email once more with news of the Dec. 2 passing of Judy Braun, a professor in the education program. Braun began with SLCC in 1989 as a part-time instructor and was awarded full professor rank in 2012. During her time at SLCC, Braun was part of many committees and part of the Faculty Senate.
“Judy always put her students and others before herself. She received many positive notes from students thanking her for helping them grow, learn and handle personal issues effectively,” Huftalin wrote.
This term, SLCC also sent support to Provost Clifton Sanders and Lisa Bickmore, the interim associate dean of English, Linguistics and Writing Studies, for the losses of dear family members.
The Globe would like to honor these losses as well as the passing of any other staff and faculty who are part of our college. We also recognize and mourn the losses experienced by our community during this difficult term. We extend our condolences to all who have been touched by the loss of their partners, friends, family, colleagues, mentors, or loved ones.