A few thoughts I have been having today:

firstly, I am so impressed and inspired by North Dakota’s teachers and education support professionals for their unyielding commitment to our state’s precious children.

Teachers have worked hard this summer, not just on their continuing education, but on developing their skills to offer high quality instruction both face-to-face and virtually.

Our bus drivers and other support professionals raised their game as well in making sure our facilities and transportation assets are clean, healthy, and safe.

Secondly, institutions of higher education in North Dakota and around the country are facing unprecedented challenges. There have been spikes in Coronavirus infection rates on campuses across North Dakota and many programs have reverted to strictly online instruction.

The NDU members at our two research universities as well as at many of our regional universities raised their concerns about safely reopening campuses early in the summer and, by and large, campus administration welcomed their input.

As we move further into the academic year, it is imperative that our members continue to over communicate their concerns with leaders.  Furthermore, everyone on every campus must take seriously their responsibility to others to mask up, wash hands frequently, and to remain socially distant.

Next, ND United public employees have earned the respect of all North Dakotans for their continued and often heroic efforts in providing the vital public services that we depend on every day.

These dedicated public servants do their work so well and so selflessly that they too often are not recognized for the important work they do.  Whether they are repairing our roads, collecting tax dollars, providing needed health and human services, or any number of jobs that must be done, North Dakota’s public service professionals have been vital to seeing ND through this pandemic.

Finally, I hope that we all work together as neighbors, friends, and North Dakotans to bend the arc of infection downward. We know what to do to be successful in ending this virus: wear a mask, wash our hands, and do not gather in groups.  Together we can do this.

Be well and stay safe, friends!

Nick Archuleta

ND United President