Dear AIC Campus Community,
I am writing to you today with great sadness at the events of the past several days. Our AIC community wholeheartedly condemns the injustice and racism that pervades this country. As a college dedicated to a vision of access, opportunity, and diversity, we are deeply concerned by what we know many of our students, faculty, and staff of color must be feeling in this moment.
As Martin Luther King, Jr., noted: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.” To that end, it is important for us to stand in solidarity with those who disproportionately feel the weight of social injustice, and to affirm AIC’s commitment to providing a safe, accessible, and inclusive environment for all members of our community.
We have heard from many of you, and we are honored that you’ve chosen to turn to us to share your stories, your fears, and your sadness. We’ve also heard the desire that some of you have expressed to be able to sit with your peers, with faculty, with your mentors and friends on campus to process your feelings and to attempt to make sense of the devastation around us right now.
We feel the same.
Our community is built upon the hopes and dreams of our students, faculty, and staff. When we come to campus, we are committing to sharing lived experiences, joining with other people who look or think like us, but also with those who do not. AIC’s community is built to offer opportunities to come together to learn about ourselves and about one another, where thoughtful dialogue can provide an important counterbalance to a more monolithic or homogenous narrative. The beauty of these experiences is that they provide all students on our campus the opportunity to learn from and grow with one another.
None of us alone can fix the depths of the injustice that pervades this country, but we can each commit to working to create an environment that is safe and inclusive for all through honest dialogue, professional development, student trainings, academic experiences, affinity groups, and policy reform. We value what each of you bring to our campus, and we will continue to find ways to ensure you feel your value every day. Bishop Desmond Tutu, who accepted an honorary degree from AIC because of our focus on social justice, teaches us that, “differences are not intended to separate, to alienate. We are different precisely in order to realize our need of one another.” Let us continue to remember our value to one another.
I hope to continue to hear from you. Please take care of yourselves.
© 2020 American International College