A politics and government professor creates a class to help students cope with—and learn from—the coronavirus

Jolie LiBert ’20 was overwhelmed. Home in Flushing, N.Y., for spring break, the Puget Sound senior had moved from one coronavirus epicenter to another. It was mid-March, and virus cases in both Washington and New York were trending sharply upward every day. “I told my mom, ‘I wonder how I can proactively think about this without reading bleak statistics,’” LiBert recalls.

Just moments later, she received an email. It was from Puget Sound politics and government professor Robin Jacobson, who was asking if students would be interested in a class about the coronavirus and its effects on local, state, and national governance. Perfect timing. It turns out that even on different sides of the country, Jacobson and LiBert were on the same page.