From deep inside the sprawling asylum at the University of Minnesota we have received a copy of today’s correspondence to the “campus community” from the Office for Equity and Diversity:
Office for Equity and Diversity
Dear Twin Cities campus community,
Like many of you, I am processing the divisiveness that has characterized the prolonged election season, and am working to understand how it will impact our communities, our university, our nation and our world.
While there is no expiration date for the raw emotion many are feeling, we will continue to work diligently toward a campus climate that supports respect and inclusive excellence as we work across our differences. I say “we” because none of this work happens in isolation; it requires time and effort from all of us. As famed poet June Jordan said, “We are the ones we have been waiting for.” We can only transform and enrich our institution by learning from one another, working in partnership, and continuing to find ways to positively contribute to our campus community.
Some members of our community feel vulnerable and marginalized, and are most directly impacted by this contentious election cycle. We are grateful for those who have already shared resources or organized spaces to foster understanding and discussion, including:
• The Gender and Sexuality Center for Queer and Trans Life; the Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence; the office of Multicultural Student Engagement and the Women’s Center are currently hosting a post-election space focused on self-care and dialogue from 1:30-3:30 p.m. in room 101 of Walter Library. All faculty, staff and students are welcome to attend.
• La Raza Student Cultural Center is sponsoring a post-election discussion this evening from 6:00-8:00 p.m. in room 211 of Coffman Memorial Union.
• The Humphrey School of Public Affairs is hosting an intergenerational, interactive conversation, A Race Gender Dialogue on the 2016 Election, at 6 p.m.
If your department or group is hosting a post-election event, please post it on the University of Minnesota Events Calendar.
As always, campus resources are available to you. We encourage students to call the counseling services office, and faculty and staff to connect with the Employee Assistance Program.
We know we live in difficult times — not just here, but across our country and world. We want the University of Minnesota to be an environment where bridges are built to respectfully connect our many communities. That begins with each of us and all of us. Please join us in this critical effort.
Vice President for Equity and Diversity
Our confidential inmate comments: “Well at least now we know why the university hired a VP for Equity and Diversity.”
And that’s not all! A reader forwards the screenshot below of an email circulated to students in the Biology, Society and Environment (“BSE) program at the university announcing the cancellation of class today:
Our reader comments: “Cost of attendance at the university $26,719 in-state or $36,383 out-of-state.” As a taxpayer who subsidizes the freakouts at the University of Minnesota, I can say I share the pain.