Dear Graduate Students, Staff, and Faculty,
As I write to you, I feel a mix of disgust and sorrow over events of the past week. We are living in a moment of uncertainty, frustration, and grief—made worse by the pandemic and physical distancing—as we are not able to easily gather for healing and support.
Like you, the Graduate Studies staff and I have felt a multitude of unexpected emotions in the last several weeks. Not only do we echo the joint statement from the student body presidents; the call for systemic change, inclusivity, and equity from Dr. Marco Barker; and the condemnation of racism from Chancellor Ronnie Green, we also stand with you in disavowing the injustice collectively witnessed in the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, George Floyd, and the unjust treatment of Christian Cooper.
Still, we remain hopeful. We are steadfast in our support of graduate education that embraces an inclusive and equitable future for minoritized populations. We believe in this future. And we need your help in achieving the future we want for our students—ALL of our students.
The Graduate Studies staff and I will continue to work with campus partners to provide opportunities for safe dialogue regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion among the graduate community on our campus. We are sincerely committed to doing the right thing.
I am immensely proud of your resilience during this difficult time and your commitment to inclusive excellence.
Let’s work together.
Dean for Graduate Studies
Support & Community
Counseling and Psychological Services are available for students needing a safe place to talk or requiring support for problems that seem overwhelming. Various therapy and support groups provide opportunities to work through a variety of concerns with others. OASIS hosts Dish It Up, a weekly discussion open to students, staff, and faculty about current topics affecting society from the community to global level. Big Red Resilience & Well-Being helps students develop skills and behaviors to manage stress, build resilience, and understand emotions
Graduate students, faculty, and staff have access to free resources provided by the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL) using university credentials. After setting up an account, we suggest using search terms such as diversity, equity, and inclusion in the resources section. Ideal Bookshelf has a list of several reading selections that expand upon anti-racism and diverse perspectives. Although it focuses on K-12, Teaching Tolerance provides free resources on identity, diversity, justice, and action for educators who want to inform practices and create inclusive communities.