Message from SMPH HR on “Creating the New Normal”

The following message from Hope Broadus, JD, Associate Dean for Human Resources, was sent to all SMPH employees on March 26, 2021. 

Dear colleagues,

On Thursday, Chancellor Blank provided insight into our institution’s plans for in-person, on-campus working and learning activities during the fall semester. Below is some additional context for SMPH employees.

I’d like to acknowledge how surreal it feels to engage in long-range planning, given that the COVID-19 pandemic has necessarily demanded each of us to sharpen our skills in agility and responsiveness, and to embrace high levels of day-to-day uncertainty in the working environment.

I also want to share a straightforward message: Thank you. Regardless of whether you have been working remotely or working on site, your ongoing contributions to our SMPH missions are tangible and lasting.

As a unit of ~9,400 personnel within a vibrant university workforce of more than 30,000 people, we share Chancellor Blank’s hope that our employees who are able will choose to be vaccinated by late spring or early summer.

Chancellor Blank has indicated that campus leaders are developing a set of principles and policy guidance that will inform the implementation of equitable remote work practices in a post-COVID environment. As a school within the institution, we await this guidance. Within the context of UW–Madison guidelines, we will plan for on-site and in-person work in a manner guided by public health considerations and an equity lens.

As we approach the challenges of returning to the “new normal,” we must continue to care for one another. We can only reach our goals by treating every member of our school with compassion, kindness, understanding, and empathy.


Hope Broadus, JD
Associate Dean for Human Resources
School of Medicine and Public Health
University of Wisconsin–Madison