Dear Carolina Community:
Like all of you, we have been deeply moved by what has been another historic week on college campuses across the nation. Once again, our country is witnessing how racial tensions and collective responses to those tensions drive change and spark calls for immediate action. From events on our own campus, to those recently taking place in Missouri and New Haven, students, faculty and staff across America are making their voices heard.
The challenges and pain we are seeing here and around the nation are real, and deserve the significant attention they continue to receive. It is our belief that we have an opportunity to highlight and reinvigorate our efforts to address the issues and gaps that keep anyone from feeling a complete sense of equality and belonging at Carolina.
Here are some immediate actions we are taking to bolster positive change on our campus, with many more to come:
- Next Thursday, Nov. 19, at 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., we will host a town hall meeting on campus to engage with students, faculty and staff on the issues that continue to hamper our ability to be the inclusive, inspiring and safe campus we aspire to be. We are working on the specific details and will provide more information on Monday. We really want you to come, but we also will livestream the event.
- Chancellor Folt has appointed Dr. G. Rumay Alexander, EdD, RN, FAAN, as her Special Assistant to the Chancellor effective Jan. 1, 2016. A Carolina faculty member since 2003 and an award-winning, national leader in diversity and other workplace issues, Dr. Alexander will continue in her role as the Director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs in the School of Nursing and as chair of the Faculty Committee on Community and Diversity. She will use her new role to more closely integrate new and related initiatives that are arising across campus to accelerate diversity, inclusion, and family and work-life balance.
- We will continue to improve our communication with you, which includes providing more ways for you to make your views known to us. We also will provide more frequent updates and opportunities to discuss the actions we have already taken on these important issues. For example, the Task Force on UNC History has been working tirelessly for six months and will be giving a progress report to the Board of Trustees next week. Understanding that most of you will not be able to attend that presentation, we will make sure that you too understand what they are doing and will issue a pre-meeting update to the campus in the coming days.
We truly want Carolina to be a place where we can come together to address the most pressing challenges of our day. We know our community has the capacity and drive to be fully inclusive. Our success in no small part depends on your joining us to accomplish this important objective at this important time.
Please join us next Thursday.
Carol L. Folt
James W. Dean, Jr.
Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost
Felicia A. Washington
Vice Chancellor for Workforce Strategy, Equity and Engagement
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs
Posted November 12, 2015