Across this nation many have stood in solidarity to address the unrest sparked by the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor. As the Senior Leadership Team for a predominantly white institution, we recognize our privilege, but we feel it’s vital to add our voices to this situation and state that Black Lives Matter.
We are saddened by the loss of life, persistent unequal treatment, and continued violence against the black community. Coming out of the last few weeks, members of our Western family are hurting deeply. Let’s stand together, help each other, and love one another in this time of need.
Western is here for all members of our family. But today, we are here particularly for our black employees and students. We acknowledge our responsibility to be part of the solution, and we are committed to being allies for our black community. Let us stand alongside one another to reaffirm our values of diversity, integrity, and respect.
As we continue forward with our strategic directions and commitment to equity and inclusion, we pledge to do a better job communicating our efforts as they take shape. We also commit to including our employees and students of color in these important decisions.
We have made it a priority to invest resources into increasing enrollment, retention, and graduation of students of color. But these efforts lack meaning without intentional action and changes to our culture. We may never be perfect, but we’re going to do better every day.
A team of employees has volunteered to start the conversation about specific actions that we can take as a College. We will share more information about these efforts soon. For now, let’s focus on educating ourselves beyond the protest and reflect on how we can become part of the solution to end the systemic barriers racism has created at our institution and in our communities.
As a Senior Leadership Team, we stand as one voice, committed to providing a welcoming and safe environment for all, while showing mutual concern for one another. Each member of our College community is valued and respected. Please take good care of yourselves, and of one another.
Amy, John, Kat, Mike, Rande, Roger, Tracy, Wade
Western Senior Leadership Team