5 Questions: 'Tis the season for gratitude

Image of the word grateful

In this special edition of our 5 Questions Friday feature, we're flipping the concept on its head. Rather than asking one person to answer five questions, we're asking five people one question: What are you thankful for this season?

Germán Bollero, Interim Dean of the College of ACES

I’ve been with the ACES family for 32 years, and we’ve been through a lot together. I am grateful for the way my colleagues and our students bring their all to the meaningful work we do at ACES. And of course, my family is very important to me. So, during this season, I reflect on and give thanks for my family.

Anna Ball, Associate Dean of Academic Programs

I’m thankful for my grandson’s deep belly giggles, meaningful conversations with my adult daughters, laughing with my mom and sister until tears roll down our faces, and some best friends to share travels, memes, and life’s moments with.

Ava Splear, sophomore in Agricultural Leadership, Education, and Communications

I am thankful for family, friends, and the community that the University of Illinois provides me with. I feel cared for and am surrounded by supportive staff, mentors, friends, resources, and opportunities that allow me to develop every day.

Alan Puzey, President of the ACES Alumni Association

This season, I am thankful for my health and the health of my family and friends. I am grateful for the people I associate with on a daily basis- my immediate family, my farm family, and my ACES extended family. I am also thankful for a rich, bountiful, and safe harvest. Most of all, I am thankful to live in country where I am free to be me and enjoy the many advantages we often take for granted.

Allen Barton, Assistant Professor in Human Development and Family Studies

As someone who studies gratitude in couple relationships, it probably is not a surprise that this is one of my favorite times of the year! Given that, I’ll start by mentioning my wife and her listening to all the academic ramblings of her husband. My parents also immediately come to mind and all the support they have provided. Being a parent yourself is a great way to grow in appreciation for all that your parents did for you! Lastly, I am very grateful for this position that I have in the College of ACES and with this university. There likely is not a week that goes by in which I don’t stop to appreciate being able to work at the University of Illinois and conduct the research and outreach that my position involves.

Read more about Barton's gratitude research from the Illinois News Bureau and in the Atlantic.