William & Mary President Taylor Reveley sent the following message to the campus community Nov. 13, 2015 - Ed.
Dear William & Mary Community,
Recent events at universities across the country have highlighted the complexity and difficulty of race relations on college campuses. William & Mary faces the same challenges as we seek to create an environment where differences are embraced, and everyone feels welcome and included in campus life. We understand that many members of our community are experiencing the same feelings of isolation and frustration as those being felt on campuses nationwide.
Last spring, I formed the Task Force on Race and Race Relations so that as a community we can better understand the state of race relations on campus, as well as better educate ourselves about racial insensitivity and discrimination and prevent both. We must also do a better job, now, of recruiting a racially diverse faculty and senior administration, and we must find better ways for those who have experienced racial insensitivity or discrimination to make this known and seek remedies.
Last week, the task force began a series of campus forums for students, faculty and staff. These meetings provide an opportunity for us to come together and think about how we want to shape our community going forward. We have added a second forum for undergraduates this Tuesday, November 17, at 7 p.m. in Blow Hall 201, and a forum for staff will take place on Monday, November 23 at 11 a.m. in Blow Hall 201. Members of our Board of Visitors, the provost, and I have participated in one or more of these forums.
Our ongoing conversations have been powerful and, at times, difficult, but they are necessary for us to make progress. As a community, we must be able to talk with each other openly and honestly.
The task force is doing important work. I urge you to help.