Office for Institutional Diversity

April 13, 2021

Dear students, faculty, and staff,

In the past few weeks, we have written to you to acknowledge and condemn ongoing national events that negatively affect us all and are especially harmful and disheartening for members of targeted marginalized communities. Once again, we acknowledge the grief, outrage, discouragement, and weariness engendered by:

  • the shooting death of Daunte Wright at the hands of Minnesota law enforcement officers during a traffic stop, and the re-opening of long festering wounds as we relive the trauma of George Floyd’s killing through the Chauvin murder trail;
  • nationwide legislative actions to deny trangender children and their families appropriate access to medical care, educational opportunities, and the dignity of recognition of their authentic personhood;
  • continuing hate speech and violence toward members of Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander communities across the nation.

The compounding effects of these national occurrences contribute to the ongoing exhaustion and trepidation of navigating the everyday for many members of our campus community. The constraints of the pandemic make it difficult for us to gather to offer one another support, comfort, and solace, adding to our stress and isolation. We reach out today to offer more spaces, albit virtual, for our community to come together to reflect, grieve, and offer one another support in response to these ongoing assaults to dignity, safety, and life itself.

We invite staff and faculty to the following virtual gatherings for collective reflection and support hosted by the Office for Institutional Diversity. The gatherings begin this week and continue through the end of May. Additional meetings may be held as national events continue to unfold. For now, the scheduled meeting times are:

  • Thursday, April 15 @ 4:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, April 28 @ 4:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, May 11 @ 4:00 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 27 @ 4:00 p.m.

Zoom Link

We invite students to the following gatherings for collective reflection and support hosted by the Multicultural Resource Center. These gatherings will begin next week and continue through the end of the semester.

  • Wednesday, April 21 @ 4:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, May 4 @ 4:30 p.m.

Zoom Link

We ask that all community members continue to support one another by acknowledging the ways these events continue to weigh heavily on people’s hearts and minds and allow one another space, time, and consideration for absorbing and responding to harm and loss.


Mary James
Dean for Institutional Diversity

Audrey Bilger