Dean's Blog: Happy Thanksgiving!

by William Clements, PhD on 11/18/16 3:45 PM
TG_2016.jpgOn behalf of the entire College of Graduate and Continuing Studies team let me offer sincere wishes for a Happy Thanksgiving!  The November holiday marks the start of the holiday season as well as the conclusion of our fall master’s seminars.

Congratulations to all of our students and faculty for continued success in your Norwich University programs and a special commendation to those who have finished degree requirements and will be awarded a degree this winter. A job well done!

Thanksgiving is a time to reflect upon that for which we are grateful and I hope you have the opportunity to do so with family and friends during the short holiday break. Our thoughts are also with those serving in the military or in other service that takes them away from family and friends for the holiday. We appreciate all you do for us every day.

For those of us in the North Country who haven’t been successful deer hunters this season, the holiday provides one last chance to get out into the woods and work off those Thanksgiving calories! Rest assured that the resident deer population has little to be concerned about when I am in the woods; I believe after many years that I emit a natural warning signal that keeps them safely from my reach.   

I’ll be spending a few more hours this week on a tiny seat about 15 feet above the forest floor in my tree stand, which is by itself a major feat since I am not keen on heights. I installed a shooting rail this year to add a bit more sense of security but I will as likely be hunkered down in my blind at ground level in more secure surroundings.  Perhaps I’ll get a glimpse of the large buck that has shown up on my game cameras regularly this fall; he seems to have survived the first days of the rifle season by coming out at night under the full moon. Whatever the outcome, spending time alone in the woods allows one to become good friends with an assortment of critters such as snow shoe hares, ruffed grouse, ravens, chickadees, woodpeckers and of course the noisy red squirrel. I’m just a visitor there and they remind me of that regularly!

deer jumping-20160726.jpgI find that one of my game camera photos (pictured above) rises to the top as the favorite for the year; and dubbed what I’m calling the “2016 Photo of the Year.” I’m not sure what she was fleeing, but the camera captured the doe at just the right moment in mid-air with her tail up in alert mode.  I couldn’t have captured a picture like that with a conventional camera no matter how hard I tried!

I normally suggest that we get back to work and hit the books, but at least for the week of Thanksgiving it’s time to relax and reflect! Happy Thanksgiving!
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This post was written by William Clements, PhD

William “Bill” Clements, PhD, wears several hats at Norwich University. In addition to serving as Dean of the College of Graduate and Continuing Studies (CGCS), he is the College’s Vice President of Academic Affairs and a professor in the undergraduate criminal justice program. Prior to becoming Dean in 2005, he was the founding director of the Master of Justice Administration program and the executive director of the Vermont Center for Justice Research, an institutional research partner of Norwich University. Dean Clements began his Norwich career in 1987 as a criminal justice professor and was among the first Norwich professors to integrate online instruction and web-based resources into his teaching. In 1999, he piloted a mobile computing initiative with undergraduate criminal justice majors and was subsequently involved in developing the online graduate program model, which today serves several thousand students across several master’s degree programs and bachelor’s degree completion program, and a variety of certificate and enrichment programs.